Most people would assume Jedediah Sanger to be the first settler, Not so. Although Jedediah is credited with being the founder of what is now the community of New Hartford, others came to this area first. Some passed thru, others stayed for a while.
Many early Dutch and German colonists had settled in the Mohawk Valley before the Revolutionary War. During this war for independence many New England soldiers were quartered in this valley, making note of the fertile Soil and swift flowing streams. When the war's end allowed them to return home they were fond of relating the beauty and richness of this western wilderness. The stories caused the flow of New Englanders to these western lands.
The earliest settlers purchased parcels of land from two principal owners: George Washington and George Clinton.
There is little proof of who settled here first. For the sake storytelling, the honor goes to Salmon Kellogg from Hartford Connecticut who came in 1782. Kellogg purchased land from Washington. He built a small house (later sold to Eli Butler) and was gone by 1787, moving to Paris Hill.
About 1784 David Risely, Alien Risely and Frederick Webster Kellogg arrived from Hartford, Connecticut settling near Washington Mills.
A friend of Hugh White (Whitestown founder) arrived and settled on a farm near Middle Settlement Road.
Another early settler to Town of Whitestown (New Hartford was then a part of Whitestown) was Oliver Collins from Wallingford, Connecticut. He enlisted in the Continental Army at age 14 and fought at Saratoga under General Gates.
The next people to come here were the Sanger's. Jedediah Sanger arrived in 1788 after purchasing 1,000 acres at $.50 per acre including the land of the present site of New Hartford Village. He erected a log cabin and cleared some land. In 1789 Colonel Sanger brought his wife and family to his forest home.
In 1790 the following families were living in or about New Hartford vicinity:
Kellogg, Jesse K,
Other early New Hartford settlers: Prescott, Lyon, Shay, Richardson, Eals and Dickinson are outstanding, but their life stories are slightly obscured.