The Town of Wayne is northeast of Bath, New York.
The region was first settled around 1791 by Abraham Hendricks, and it was organized as the "Town of Frederickstown" on 18 May 1796, when the County of Steuben was formed from a part of the larger Ontario county. Early settlers include Ephriam Sanford, Anthony Swarthout, Jabez Hopkins, and Joseph Bailey.
The town changed its name to "Wayne" on April 6, 1808 in honor of the Revolutionary War hero, General Anthony Wayne, and included what is now the smaller hamlet of Wayne, NY. Afterwards, the town was substantially reduced in size by the formation of other towns, including Reading (1806), Orange (1813) and Barrington, and Tyrone (1822). In 1854, the size of the township was again reduced by moving a parcel of land to the town of Tyrone, which included a large portion of the hamlet of Wayne. Also, a former hamlet in the township, further south, was known as "Wayne Four Corners".
Famous natives and locations in Wayne
Wayne native Jonathan Goble is said to have invented the rickshaw in 1859. He was a Marine who traveled with Commodore Matthew Perry's squadron which opened Japan to western trade. He later returned as a Baptist missionary and was inspired to invent the rickshaw in order to transport his invalid wife around the streets of Tokyo.
A famous landmark in the township was the Keuka Hotel, built in 1895 on the shores of Lake Keuka. Hoagy Carmichael was the pianist and vocalist at the hotel for two seasons and local legend has it that his hit Stardust was written while at the Keuka hotel.
Francis M. McDowell, one of the seven founders of the National Grange and its treasurer for 21 years was born in Wayne, NY. In the 1860s, he returned to Wayne to grow grapes on the shores of Lake Keuka. He was also involved with his brother-in-law Samuel Hallett, in several enterprises. Samuel Hallett is known for building the largest home in Wayne, known as the "Aisle of Pines". It was a 20-column mansion, built in 1854, but it burned to the ground in 1974.