DescriptionThe site of Binghamton was bought by Philadelphia merchant William Bingham in 1786 and settled by Joseph Leonard and other pioneers the following year. Originally called Chenango for the river it bordered, the settlement was renamed Binghamton in honor of the man whose donations of land allowed it to grow into a village and later into a full-fledged town.
Railroads, photography equipment and cigar making were the town's major industries before 1900, but shoe manufacturing became the dominant enterprise in the early 20th century. Such high-tech corporations as Universal Instruments and Link Flight Simulation, which manufactures aerospace equipment, later came to the forefront. IBM established its first plant in nearby Endicott.
Gold- and onion-domed churches of various Eastern European cultures are found throughout Broome County. Binghamton also includes among its cultural assets a branch of the State University of New York. The Anderson Center for the Performing Arts at Binghamton University presents performing artists of national and international acclaim; phone (607) 662-7523. The Forum Theatre on Washington Street hosts cultural productions; phone (607) 778-2480.
The Binghamton area has six antique, wood-carved carousels that visitors can ride from Memorial Day through Labor Day (weather permitting). George F. Johnson, who donated the carousels to local parks, stipulated that the municipalities never charge a fee for a ride. The carousels are at C. Fred Johnson Park in Johnson City; George W. Johnson Park in Endicott; Highland Park in Endwell; Recreation Park in Binghamton; Binghamton Zoo at Ross Park; and West Endicott Park in Endicott.
Visitor InfoGreater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce 49 Court St., 2nd floor BINGHAMTON, NY 13902-0995. Phone:(607)772-8860 or (800)836-6740
ShoppingOakdale Mall, 3 miles west on Harry L Drive (SR 17 exit 70N), has The Bon-Ton, Burlington Coat Factory and JCPenney among its 126 stores. Kohl's anchors Parkway Plaza, on SR 434 at SR 17 exit 70S. Clinton Street's Antique Row, off SR 17 exit 72, attracts antique enthusiasts.
Things to SeeBinghamton Zoo at Ross Park