A Brief History of Town of Tompkins
by Dorothy W. Brizzee, Town Historian, January 23, 1997
The Town of Tompkins set off from Walton, was established as Pinefield in 1806. Its name was changed to Tompkins in honor of Donald D. Tompkins, a former governor of New York, in 1808. In 1880, 44 square miles was taken off to form the town of Deposit. The town's area is 104 square miles, 66,560 acres. The principle industry was logging, farming and there always was plenty of fish and game to be had.
One of the main settlements was where the then Gannuissa Creek, now called Trout Creek, met the west branch of the Delaware River. It was first called Dickinson City, but later was changed to Cannonsville, named after Benjamin Cannon.
Another settlement, Teedville, later named Trout Creek, dates to 1788-1789. It lies at the head of Gannuissa or Trout Creek. the name Trout Creek derived from the large number of trout in the stream. Some of the early settlers names in Trout Creek were Bullock, Constable, Hales, Jacksons and Smiths.
Another settlement along the Gannuissa or Trout Creek was Walleyville, later named Rockroyal. David W. Lewis was a large landowner there in the early days. He also built the stone barn which was blown up by New York City. A large family of Walleys resided there also.
Other hamlets in the town were Carpenters Eddy, later named Granton, Kelsey, Cleaver, Rock Rift, and Apex. Early names in the settlements were Peck, Gregory, Crawford, Hathway, Moores, and Eggleston. The O & W railroad also ran through a portion of the town in the late eighteen hundreds through the nineteen thirties.
At present time, Cannonsville, Rockroyal, Granton, and Rock Rift are under the Cannonsville Reservoir, built by New York City in 1962.
The Town of Tompkins at this time, 1997, has a post office and church in Trout Creek, also the following: a supervisor, town board, town clerk, a planning board, a road superintendent, tax collector, voluntary fire department and auxiliary, and an emergency squad, also town historian and dog warden.