The 1971 prison riot at Attica Correctional Facility brought the name “Attica” into the national and international vernacular, and the prison still is the top employer in the region. But Attica has much more to offer, including historic buildings, an annual rodeo said to be one of the best in the eastern United States, a variety of shopping, and an agricultural heritage. With more than 7,700 residents, Attica is one of the biggest towns in Wyoming County.
The Attica Correctional Facility is a maximum security prison that was constructed in the 1930s and is one of the oldest prisons in New York. The prison riot in 1971 resulted in 39 deaths (29 inmates and 10 guards), and the name “Attica” has since been mentioned in many pop-culture references. Some well-known convicts who has been incarcerated here include bank robber Willie Sutton; David Berkowitz, also known as “Son of Sam”; and Mark David Chapman, who killed John Lennon. On a more positive note, Attica also has landmarks such as the Exchange Street Historic District, the Augustus A. Smith House, and a Post Office that all are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Attica Historical Society is at 130 Main St.