The early settlers were Dutch, but later Quakers and New Englanders arrived. The Town of Chatham was formed from the Towns of Canaan and Kinderhook in 1795. Contradictory of its current condition or image, Chatham, in fact, was an industrial center of multiple inter-state rail lines in the early 1900s, including the junction of the Boston and Albany Railroad for connections east and west, the Rutland Railroad for connections to the north to Vermont and the New York Central's Harlem Line for connections to New York City. In 1887 a terminal designed by Henry Hobson Richardson was constructed. Amtrak service on the Lake Shore Limited passes through, east-west, but does not stop. In later years Amtrak has planned to build a rail station in Chatham.