The Portville Historical and Preservation Society
17 Maple Avenue
Portville, NY 14770
As the weather gradually warms and our thoughts turn to Spring, they are usually accompanied by
other mental pictures of a common occurrence in the Portville area –

Floods, as devastating as they have been over the years for Portville, have as much to do with the
success of our town as the people who established it.  The early lumbermen depended on the
untamed Allegheny River and the Oswayo, Dodges, and Haskell Creeks for their semi-annual flooding
to carry their lumber from the mill ponds to their markets.
Those of us who have had the misfortune of experiencing “a big one,” either in 1942 or in 1972 (or
both), have the indelible memory of incessant rains, rising water, evacuation to safety, and worst of
all, the devastating aftermath.

This week, we focus our attention on the ‘42 Flood that swept through Portville in July, 1942.  It
was eight years before the dikes were built for flood control, so there was nothing to stop the water
from coming into every home and business in its path.  It was already a stressful time for our
Portville families, with many of our young people overseas during World War II.

Many people contributed their pictures for a book about the flood.  It is this book, “Portville’s Flash
Flood of 1942,” that we have recreated here, presented in two parts.

Portville’s Flash Flood of 1942:   PART ONE     (It takes time to load all the pictures!)

Remember, to find our previous homepages, go to our

The lovely watercolor
in our toolbar above is
a depiction of the office
at 17 Maple Avenue.  
The artist is Portville's
very own talent,
Marilyn Reynolds.
Welcome to PHPS
This page was last updated on 04-14-08