The hamlet of South Lima lies within three different townships: Lima, Avon and the northern portion of the Town of Livonia. The settlement sprang up in the early part of the 19th century, and was first known as Goose Island because of the many geese in the swampland that surrounded it. Eventually, the swamps were drained, and the resulting muck land grew abundant crops for the local farmers who raised and marketed such produce as onions, celery, lettuce and potatoes.
One of the first pioneers came to South Lima in 1802; he was Ethan Bronson who bought a large tract of land from the Holland Land Purchase. Other early settlers were Jeremiah Whaley and William Hamilton. Mr. Bronson and Mr. Hamilton owned the two taverns in town. South Lima saw its fair share of travelers as it was on the main Canandaigua and Batavia stage coach route.
In 1852 the Erie Railroad was built through Goose Island. Mr. Hamilton gave part of his land to the railroad with the understanding that they would change the name of the place to Hamilton Station. In the 1960s, the Hamilton Tavern was dismantled and moved to the Genesee Country Museum and was used as a town hall.