Cornerstone: The Village of Falconer

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Article Contributed by
Walt Pickut

The Village of Falconer, New York will celebrate its 200th birthday in less than 4 years, though it hasn’t always carried the same name and started its life as more of a country settlement, a few farms and buildings near the Chadakoin River and the Conewango Creek.

Falconer’s Mayor, David Krieg, and the village officials, however, are keeping their community up-to-date and, of particular importance today, financially ready to meet their challenges. Though the village population has dropped slightly in the last decade, a policy of welcoming new businesses into their commerce-friendly neighborhood supports the local prosperity. “We just had a ribbon-cutting ceremony couple of weeks ago for the new Falconer Pharmacy on Main Street,” Mayor Krieg said, “you’re doing every thing we can to attract more businesses downtown.”

“We have a fire department to run here too,” the mayor said, “but we are able to pay cash every seven years to replace one of our fleet of trucks.” Rather than borrowing, the village paid $900,000 in cash for this year’s new ladder truck. “We salt it away when we can to spend it when we must,” the mayor said with obvious pride. The Falconer Fire Department also serves the east and of Ellicott for fire and emergency calls.

Falconer’s commercial success once depended upon the Allegheny & Pittsburg Railroad which ran through the middle of the village on land donated by Patrick Falconer to stimulate the economy of his region. In 1874 the village changed its name to Falconer from Worksville. Edward Work had originally purchased the land from the Holland Land Company in 1807 but sold it to Robert Falconer in 1836. Falconer was not incorporated as a Village until 1891.

Combining the old and new, 2013’s traditional Falconer Santa Parade is slated for Saturday, November 23. Jolly old Saint Nick and Mrs. Santa Claus will be there on Saturday afternoon to meet and greet the children of the village at the Santa House. Parade Grand Marshal will be village resident, Steve Garvey. “He certainly deserves the honor, he’s a tireless supporter of everything that happens here,” said Tony Franchina, president of the Falconer Business Association, traditional parade organizers.

Falconer’s families, similar to most in the Greater Jamestown area, reflect two centuries of European immigration to the New World: half of the population is evenly divided between second and third generation Swedish, Italian and German families with another quarter of the residents evenly split between the English and the Irish. The remainder, like all Americans, are simply All-American.

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Walt Pickut
Walt Pickut’s writing career began with publishing medical research in1971 while working at the Jersey City Medical Center and the NYU Hospital and School of Medicine. Walt holds board registries in respiratory care and sleep technology as well as bachelor's degrees in biology and communication, and a master's degrees in physiology from Fairleigh-Dickinson University in New Jersey, with additional graduate work in mass communication completed at SUNY Amherst. He currently teaches Presentational Speaking in the Houghton College PACE program at JCC and holds memberships in the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Society of Business Publication Editors. He lives in Jamestown with his wife Nancy, an MSW social worker, and has three children: Dr. Cait Lamberton in Pittsburgh, Bill Pickut, a marketing executive in Chicago, and Rev. Matt Pickut in Plymouth, IN.