Neff & Gampp Cheese Factory Site Introduction
The Neff & Gampp Cheese Factory site (A00902.000096, NYSM 11658, UB 3830) was excavated as part of cultural resource investigations undertaken in preparation for the construction of Segment 6 of the U.S. Route 219 highway, a 5.3 km (3.3 mi) section of the 4 lane divided highway, between Edies Rd. and Neff Rd. in the Town of Ashford, Cattaraugus County, New York. All aspects of this archaeological project conforms to New York Archaeological Council’s (NYAC) Standards for Cultural Resource Investigations (1994). The work scope and site limits were defined in consultation with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Places, Clough Harbour & Associates, LLC, the New York State Department of Transportation and the Seneca Nation of Indians, Tribal Historic Preservation Office.
The Neff & Gampp Cheese Factory site is situated on a portion of Lot 62 in Township 5, Range 6 of Joseph Ellicott’s survey of the Holland Land Purchase, opposite the intersection of the existing course of US Route 219 and Snake Run Rd. It is associated with the partially-ruined foundation of a mid-19th to mid-20th century commercial / industrial structure (MDS 81). MDS 81 was a small-scale cheese factory (c.1867-1888) that was later re-used as a domestic tenancy. The building was abandoned by the mid 1960s and the roof collapsed a short time afterwards. At present, only the structure’s stone and concrete block foundation remains, filled with the structural remains of the buildings upper works.
The Neff & Gampp Cheese Factory site is situated in a low lying area at the edge of the Connoisarauley Creek flood plain. An unnamed, perennially flowing tributary of the creek flows adjacent to the cheese factory’s foundation, about 12 m (40 ft) to the north. To the east, the ground surface slopes gently downward for a distance of about 60 m (200 ft) to the creek, while to the west exists the a steep slope that led up to the present alignment of US Route 219. At the time of archaeological investigations, the site was bounded to the north by Snake Run (Creek); to the east immediately by a cow pasture; to the south by a steep slope leading to the northern (side) yard of a residential structure located at 9378 US Route 219; and to the west by US Route 219’s steep road embankment.