Kiantone was a derivative of the Seneca word kyenthone, meaning, roughly, level place for growing corn. While the Senecas received exclussive rights to reservation lands in 1794, they did not move at once to the reservations. When anglo-saxon settlers arrived in Kiantone, they found the Kyenthono village still inhabited by the senecas.
Through the years, Kiantone made its name as a mill town, with settlers either coming up the Allegany River from Pittsburgh or overland from Buffalo.
The first Kiantone town meeting was held on Feb. 21, 1854, with Ezbai Kidder elected supervisor, Levand B. Brown elected town clerk; Francis M. Alvord town school superintendent; and Stephan Norton as tax collector. According to a 2006 book, ‘‘Kiantone, Chautauqua County’s Mystical Valley,’’ by Deborah K. Cronin, construction and improvement of roads was a continuous concern, and one-room schoolhouses were built. A post office took the new town name on April 4, 1955, and would remain the town’s only post office until it was discontinued in 1900. The population remained small, and the town was geographically the smallest in Chautauqua County. For a time, Kiantone played host to one of Chautauqua County’s numerous spiritual communities, a place called Harmonia. Harmonia had up to 30 people living in it at its peak before dying out in the 1860s.