Canandaigua (Utaʼnaráhkhwaʼ in Tuscarora) is a city in Ontario County, New York, United States. The population was 10,545 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Ontario County although some administrative offices are located at the county complex in the adjacent town of Hopewell. The name Canandaigua is derived from the Seneca name spelled variously Kanandarque, Ganondagan, Ga-nun-da-gwa, or in a modern transcription, tganǫdæ:gwęh, which means "the chosen spot", or "at the chosen town".
The city lies within the Town of Canandaigua. The City of Canandaigua is located on the northern end of Canandaigua Lake, southeast of Rochester and west of Syracuse. Parts of six neighboring towns also share the Canandaigua mailing address and 14424 ZIP code.
Built on the site of a Seneca Iroquois village, Canandaigua was an important railroad junction and home port for several steamboats by the mid-19th century. After the Civil War, local industries included two brick works, the Lisk Manufacturing Company, several mills, and the regionally prominent McKechnie Brewery. The shire town of the original county of western New York, Canandaigua was the site of the Susan B. Anthony trial in 1873. Today, the town is a center for business, government, health care, and education. Canandaigua is the home of Constellation Brands, founded as Canandaigua Wine Company; Finger Lakes Community College; Thompson Health System; the Constellation Brands-Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center (CMAC); Granger Homestead; The Canandaigua Lady Paddle wheel tour boat; and Sonnenberg Gardens and Mansion State Historic Park. It is also home to one of the largest Wegmans Food Markets and the New York Wine & Culinary Center.
The city was the site of a village of the Seneca, Kanandaigua. It was located on West Avenue where the West Avenue Cemetery is today.
The region was visited by the explorers Robert de La Salle and René de Bréhant de Galinée in 1669 during which time they observed a burning spring known to the Seneca in the nearby Town of Bristol. Such springs occur in places where water appears to support a flame caused by escaping natural gas, and several have been noted in the Canandaigua area.
The Seneca village consisted of twenty-three longhouses and was destroyed by the Sullivan Expedition on September 10, 1779.
The city public high school, Canandaigua Academy, was founded in 1791.
On November 11, 1794, the Treaty of Canandaigua was signed in the town. The treaty was constructed in hopes of establishing peace and friendship between the United States of America and the Six Nations of the Iroquois and is still recognized by the federal government today.
What is now the City separated from the Town of Canandaigua to become the Village of Canandaigua in 1815 and a city in 1913.
In 1807-1808, Jessie Hawley, a flour merchant from Geneva, New York, who became an early and major proponent of building of the Erie Canal, spent 20 months in the Canandaigua debtors' prison; during this time he published fourteen essays on the idea of building the canal that were to prove immensely influential.
In 1873, women's rights activist Susan B. Anthony was tried in the Ontario County Courthouse, located in the City of Canandaigua, for voting. She was found guilty and fined $100, which she did not pay.
In 1945, Canandaigua Wine Company was founded by Marvin Sands. The company underwent rapid expansion through acquisitions in the 1980s and 1990s. It joined other companies in forming Constellation Brands and became the world's largest wine and spirits distributor. In 2006, Canandaigua Wine Company rebranded as Centerra Wine Co., a subsidiary of Constellation Wines, U.S., Inc.
On March 14, 2006, President George W. Bush came to Canandaigua and spoke at Canandaigua Academy, and at Ferris Hills, an assisted living community for seniors. The focus of this visit was to talk about Medicare Part D for senior citizens. The text of his speech at Ferris Hills can be found here.