I opened up my Citizen newspaper this morning and there on the front page just below the fold was an article about a very old and historic home in Scipio Center.
The home is up for sale, and has been for a while. Known as the Merrifield Estate, it will be featured on the Today Show on NBC on Friday 11/13/2009 in a segment they are running on real estate at bargain prices.
The original settler was Ozam Merryfield, as the name was spelled at that time. Born about 1775, he died in Scipio NY in 1852. In his will, he gave about 90 acres of his real estate to his widow Adelia; his only son Thomas received an additional 100 acres. Ozam also mentions the potential for a railroad to run across his property that was bequeathed to Thomas, and Thomas' right to collect any damages if that occurred.
One of the small settlements in Scipio was (and still is for locals) known as Merrifield, named for this family. And yes, the railroad ran through it!
The house was used for a period of time as a stop on the Underground Railroad. I seem to recall an article in the Citizen a few years ago with some interesting details about the basement, and the documentation that led to that conclusion.
If you can, watch the Today Show on Friday to see a little piece of Scipio's history!