(WETM) – Presidential campaigns span thousands of miles every four years, but rarely do candidates make it to the Twin Tiers.

The first documented visit to the area was President Millard Fillmore in 1851 for the opening of the Erie Railroad. President Fillmore visited Corning, Painted Post, Addison, Hornell, Arkport, and Almond.

Teddy Roosevelt made several visits to the area when campaigning for Governor of New York and President, mostly visiting Steuben County thanks to the railroads.

Theodore Roosevelt’s campaign train stopped at Cameron Mills, he spotted the milk station manager with his nine children on the loading dock. “This is the most prosperous place I have been to yet,” TR quipped

Steuben County Historical Society

Roosevelt’s cousin Franklin Roosevelt made campaign stops in Elmira, Corning, Bath, and Hornell during his long political career as a Governor and President. When he was the Governor of New York, Roosevelt visited the Reconstruction Home for children afflicted by polio, a disease he also suffered from.

Republican presidential candidate Wendell Willkie came to Elmira on October 25, 1940, giving a speech at Wisner Park and participating in a car parade through the city.

General Dwight D. Eisenhower visited Corning prior to officially declaring his candidacy, visiting with Corning’s Amo Houghton, who’d later become his Ambassador to France.

Gerald Ford and First Lady Hillary Clinton also both made visits to the Doorman Library in Bath.

Green Party candidate Ralph Nader also made a visit to Corning and Binghamton during his 2000 campaign.

Thank you to the Steuben and Chemung County Historical Societies for the information and pictures.