Historic marker notes “Paul Revere of Ridge Road”

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 25 May 2014 at 12:00 am

Photo and article by Tom Rivers

GAINES – John Proctor is often referred to by historians as the Paul Revere of Ridge Road. On a December night in 1813, he rode by horseback on the Ridge from Gaines to Clarkson to warn of the approach of British and the Indians after the burning of Lewiston.

The following morning he joined a regiment that was headed to Lewiston. The regiment would capture the enemy quartered at Molyneaux Tavern. A historical marker on a large stone shares the story of Proctor. The stone is on the south side of Ridge Road, a few houses west of the Route 98 intersection.

The marker was put up in 1935 by the State Education Department and the Daughters of the American Revolution. It is one of a series of historical markers along Ridge Road that were erected in the 1920s and ’30s.

The Proctor marker also notes that the site was once a primitive log cabin owned by Elijah Downer. When Gov. DeWitt Clinton passed through in 1810, looking at land for a possible Erie Canal, he stopped at the cabin for breakfast.

Today, Justin and Adrienne Kirby and their three children make their home on the property.

Here are links to previous articles about the historic markers along the Ridge:

There’s a George Washington Monument in Orleans County

The Transit Line: Where the Holland Purchase begins

Oldest building in Orleans stands in Ridgeway on 104