Corning, NY is a great destination for a weekend getaway with friends, a significant other, spouse or family.
As you drive into the city of Corning, you’ll notice the lush green hills, often banked in cloud cover, and the Chemung river that meanders gracefully through the valley. Both are remnants of glaciers that moved through the region tens of thousands of years ago. The richness of the valley made it a fertile home to numerous tribes of Native Americans, most recently the Iroquois Nation, and then to settlers seeking farmland. The original agricultural roots of the area are still strong, but have slowly made way for industry as the Erie Canal, followed by the railroad, made shipping profitable. The company that would become known worldwide as Corning Glass Works and then Corning, Inc. was started in Brooklyn, NY 1851 as Brooklyn Flint Glass works by Armory Houghton (pronounced HOE-ton). The name was changed when he moved his company to the city of Corning in 1868. For more on Corning’s history, click here.
When you visit, be sure to check out the architecture. In addition to the Corning Museum of Glass structure, Market Street has many fascinating and original buildings dating back to the mid 1800s and if you drive up the steep side streets, you’ll find an amazing array of Victorian and Greek Revival style houses and unusual churches with marvelous stained glass windows.
Although Corning is closely associated with glass making and its Museum of Glass, there are plenty of additional activities to keep you busy, and Corning , NY is also a welcoming gateway to the Finger Lakes’ rich Wine Country.
A few interesting factoids:
- After his invention of the light bulb in 1879, Thomas Alva Edison turned to Corning Glass Works to make the casements or “bulbs” to hold the glass filaments that would revolutionize the way families lit their homes.
- On June 23, 1972, Hurricane Agnes dropped 7″-10″ of rain on the region around Corning, raising the water level of the Chemung River so that water rose to 5’4″ above floor level at the Corning Museum of Glass, doing devastating damage, long since repaired. The museum displays a red marker indicating the flood level.
- Corning Museum of Glass has over 45,000 objects made of glass, some that date back as far as 3500 years.
- The Subaru telescope, located in Japan, has the largest monolithic (one-piece) telescope mirror ever made and it was constructed at Corning Glass Works.
- The artisans who blow glass are known as a “Gaffers,” giving name to Corning’s Gaffer District.
- In the late 1930’s, businessman Max Eckhardt and a representative of F.W. Woolworth convinced Corning Glass Works to get into the production of Christmas ornaments which had previously been made almost exclusively in Germany, the Czech Republic and Japan.
For more interesting facts about Corning, NY, CLICK HERE.
For more information about a getaway to Corning, NY, you may want to read the following posts:
- Profile of the Radisson Hotel Corning
- A Look at The Rockwell Museum of Western Art
- Corning’s Gaffer District
- Corning Museum of Glass