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The Pulteney Association

The Pulteney Association was a purchaser of a large portion of the Western New York land tract known as the Phelps and Gorham Purchase. The Pulteney Associates were British investors. Nine-twelfths was owned by Sir William Johnstone Pulteney (1729-1805), a Scottish lawyer, two twelfths by William Hornby, former Governor of Bombay, and Patrick Colquhoun, a Scottish merchant. Some of their heirs owned land in Western New York into the 1920s.

After Oliver Phelps and Nathaniel Gorham purchased all of Massachusetts' land in Western New York in 1788, they ran into financial trouble. In 1790, they sold all of their holdings to Robert Morris, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, a financier of the American Revolution and the wealthiest man in the United States. Morris hoped to make a quick sale. In 1792, Morris' agent, William Temple Franklin, grandson of Benjamin Franklin, sold 1.2 million acres of the Phelps and Gorham Purchase to The Pulteney Associates. The Pulteney Purchase, or the Genesee Tract as it was also known, comprised all of the present counties of Ontario, Steuben and Yates, as well as portions of Allegeny, Livingston, Monroe, Schuyler and Wayne counties. After Pulteney's death in 1805, it was known as the Pulteney Estate.