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With its cool climate in western New York white wines excel in the region and are compared to the Rhine region in Germany due to the similar growing conditions.Riesling is king here with more acres planted by more than 2-1 over the next most planted, Chardonnay.If we can’t rely on “An Old Indian Legend” to tell us how the Finger Lakes got named, then we have to look at more recent history, starting with colonial times.I have been researching Haudenosaunee/Colonial New York history for nearly a decade and have been writing about my research for the past couple years.Oneida drains at its western end into the Oswego River, which connects to the Seneca River north of Syracuse.

So, from Oneida Lake to Canandaigua Lake, there is a nine lake interconnected waterway.This book compiles various lectures and essays about New York State, including a “Catalogue of the Books, Tracts, Newspapers, Maps, Charts, Views, Portraits, and Manuscripts in the Library of the New York Historical Society.” Though one part names 20 lakes across Upstate New York, including all eleven of what we call the Finger Lakes (using “Crooked” in place of Keuka), the book does not include the all-important phrase “Finger Lakes.” (1819).Because his geographical discussions are extensive, the book warrants a further examination.If the colonists, French, Dutch or English were to name a set of lakes as “Finger Lakes,” this whole system would be a prime candidate.However, Oneida Lake is not situated on a north-south river valley, and is relatively shallow (55 feet), though it has nearly 25 times the surface area of Otisco Lake.

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