From Ebenezer to West Seneca

January 11, 2013 Updated Jan 11, 2013 at 12:33 PM EDT

By WKBW News
By Jaclyn Asztalos

January 11, 2013 Updated Jan 11, 2013 at 12:33 PM EDT

West Seneca, N.Y. (WKBW) - One bustling suburban area was not always known as it is today.

"The name West Seneca started when the Ebenezer Society incorporated it in honor of the Seneca Indians," Historian Jim Pace said.

The land was known as the Village of Ebenezer in the late 1800 and a section of it was called Gardenville, named after the beautiful and lush landscape that was in the area. Currently, there is a historical display at the Burchfield Nature and Art Center on Clinton and Union Road.

"We've put a display on which we feel encompasses all time periods from when the Native American presence to the Ebenezers, to the 100 years after, all the way up to modern times," Pace said.

This small display is just a sampling of what the West Seneca Historical Society has to offer. Just a few miles up the street on Mill Road, there is an entire house filled with items from the past.

"The unique thing about West Seneca history is that they were a utopian religious group and they were prosecuted in Germany. They came here not only for religious freedom but to live their communal lifestyle," Pace said.

Residents who have lived in West Seneca for decades said it's important to keep the rich history alive.

"To pay tribute to a lot of the people who lived here," Louise Nazareth Parika said.

Tours are given of the museum with everything from kitchen appliances from the 1800s to more modern items. A book that tells all the historical facts about West Seneca is also available to answer any of your questions.