The Village of
Belmont was originally laid out in 1833 and named Philipsburg in honor
of Philip Church. The Village was incorporated on February 1, 1853 as
Philipsville, but everything east of the Genesee River, which runs
through the Village, was called Miltonville. In 1870 a referendum was
held at a local hotel and 70 male voters decided on the name Belmont - -
from the French "beaumont" meaning "beautiful hills".
construction of the Erie Railroad through the Genesee valley in 1849 -
1850, Belmont grew rapidly. By 1857 a movement was underway to move the
Allegany County seat from Angelica to a more centralized location and
closer to the depot for the New York and Erie Railroad.
Surrounded by controversy, Belmont became the county seat in 1859. The
conflict, however, was not completely resolved. A courthouse was built
in Belmont, although court was held alternately between Angelica and
Belmont until 1892 when all court session were finally moved to Belmont.
Since that time, the Village has been the primary home of the Allegany
A new courthouse was built in 1938 with a commanding view of both the
Village and the Genesee River. In 1976 a new county office building was
built adjacent to the courthouse - - housing the jail, legislative
chambers, social services, sheriff's department, and health department.
In 2006 the sheriff's department and the county jail were moved to the
new public safety facility located must outside the Village of State
In addition to being the county seat, Belmont is home to numerous
businesses, the new Genesee Valley Central School, the Fountain Arts
Center, and many other attractions.