Hubbell Law Office
We are fortunate to have the original office of Canandaigua lawyer Walter Hubbell on our property.
This building dates from 1822. Originally located on the west side of Main Street in Canandaigua about a one-third a mile south of the Granger Homestead, this was typical of law offices of the time.
In fact there were two buildings similar to this one on either side of the Granger Homestead driveway. These were the offices of Gideon and Francis Granger.
Walter Hubbell graduated from Union College in 1819 and came to Canandaigua to practice law. While Hubbell was in the general practice of law, much of the work he did revolved around land transactions. Because this area was part of the frontier of the nation at the time, land speculation and acquisition was rampant and an important business for any lawyer. Inside the office you will see land surveying equipment on display. The maps on the wall indicate the divisions of the land in the area. The books are typical of those found in an office such as this.
This building had an interesting history. At one time (from about 1910-1960) it was used as a tool shed on Niagara Street. In 1960 it was moved to its present location and the on-going restoration project was started in 1994. The building has two rooms: the main office area where Mr. Hubbell would receive his clients and the smaller back room, which would house law students.
One of the more interesting students who read law with Hubbell was Stephen A. Douglas. While best known for his connection to the state of Illinois, his work in the US Congress and his debates with Abraham Lincoln, it is in this office that Douglas first read law in 1832. Born in Brandon, Vermont in 1813, he moved to a farm near Clifton Springs, New York and attended Canandaigua Academy. After reading law with Hubbell, Douglas moved to Illinois where he eventually took up a political career. This movement from east to west (Vermont to New York to Illinois) was fairly typical of many of those that opened up the frontiers of the United States. The law office is open during regular tour hours. It is used in the winter as the starting point for sleigh rides.