Delavan is named in honor of the Edward Cornelius Delavan, first chairman of the NY State Temperance Society and wealthy temperance leader from Albany NY.  The name was selected by Colonel Samuel F. Phoenix who attended the first meeting of the Territorial Legislature of Belmont as a lobbyist.  Phoenix also named the County in honor of Chancellor Rueben Walworth, prominent NY temperance leader.  Neither Delavan nor Walworth ever visited the Town or County named in their honor.  They hoped to create a community, where the religious, temperance and abolitionist beliefs would become a living reality and therefore named the Town Delavan.

The Town of Delavan was created on January 2, 1838 by act of the Territorial Legislature. The City of Delavan is situated on land, which was part of the Town of Delavan until 1897.  Although Delavan was organized as a separate town in 1838, no record of any town meeting for the election of officers can be found prior to 1842.  The first town meeting was held April 5, 1842 at the home of Israel Stowel.  Fifty six male citizens cast the votes, which elected William A. Bartlett, Delavan’s first Town Chairman; also elected were two side supervisors.

Town Chairmen originally served one year terms but in April 1945 with George Proctor as chairman, the term of office was extended to two years.  During Hugo Hammerstrom’s administration, the size of the town board was increased from three members to five.

The Town of Delavan today has a population of 5,272; is the Community of Choice for people who care a great deal about where they live, work, recreate, and raise families.

Currently known for its; over two thousand Acre Lake which was rehabilitated from 1989 to 1992.  The lake is a great place for outdoor water sports, swimming, fishing, and sailing.