Dutchess County is a
county located in the U.S. state of New York, in the
state's Mid-Hudson Region of the
The 2000 census
lists the population
as 280,150, but the United
States Census Bureau
gives an estimate of 292,706 residents for
the 12-month period ending July 1, 2007. The county seat is Poughkeepsie.
County is part of the Poughkeepsie‚ÄďNewburgh‚ÄďMiddletown, NY Metropolitan
Statistical Area as well as the larger New York‚ÄďNewark‚ÄďBridgeport, NY-NJ-CT-PA Combined
It is the northmost county in the New York
to Anglo-Dutch settlement, what is today Dutchess County was a
leading center for the Wappinger
. They had
their council-fire at Fishkill Hook and also held gatherings along
In 1683, the Province of New
established its first twelve counties, with Dutchess
County being one of them. Its boundaries at that time included the
County, and a small portion of the present Columbia
County (the towns of Clermont and
The county was named for
Mary of Modena
, Duchess of York,
second wife of James, Duke of York (later James II, King of
1713, Dutchess was administered by Ulster
County was detached from Dutchess.
In the twelve years 1685-1697 lawful patents had beengranted
securing for their purchasers every foot of Hudson River
shorelinein the original county.Three additional patents, to 1706,
laid claim to the remaininginterior lands.
- 1685 Rombout (Beacon/ Fishkill
- 1686 Minisink
- 1686 Kip
- 1688 Schuyler
- 1688 Schuyler (Red Hook)
- 1688 √Ürtsen-Roosa-Elton
- 1696 Pawling-Staats
- 1697 Rhinebeck
- 1697 Nine
- 1697 Philipse
- 1697 Cuyler
- 1703 Fanconnier
- 1703 Beekman (Back Lots)
- 1706 Nine
From 1683-1725 most of the settlers in Dutchess County were Dutch.
Many of these moved in from Albany and Ulster Counties.
settled along the Fishkill River and in the areas that are now
Poughkeepsie and Rhinebeck.
From 1715-1730 most of the new settlers in Dutchess county were
Germans. From 1730 until 1775 New Englanders were the main new
settlers in Dutchess County.
Franklin D. Roosevelt lived in his family home in
Park, overlooking the Hudson River.
In the 1960s G. Gordon Liddy
(now a radio talk show host and
who went to prison for crimes committed during the Nixon
administration's Watergate scandal
), was an assistant
Dutchess County district attorney when he repeatedly tried to have
arrested on drug
charges. By the 1980s, the two ex-cons went on a speaking tour
Prior to the 1960s Dutchess county was primarily agricultural.
Since then the southern part (from Poughkeepsie south) of the
county has developed into a largely residential area suburban
in character with many of its residents
commuting to jobs in New York City. The northern region of the
county at the same time developed many residences used during the
summer and or on weekends by people living in the New York City
County is located in southeastern New York State, between the
Hudson River on its west and the
York-Connecticut border on its east, about halfway between the
cities of Albany and New York. It contains two cities: Beacon and Poughkeepsie.
According to the U.S.
county has a total area of 825 square miles (2,138 km¬≤),
of which, 802 square miles (2,076 km¬≤) of it is land and
24 square miles (62 km¬≤) of it (2.88%) is water.
terrain of the county is mostly hilly, especially in the
Hudson Highlands in the southwestern corner and
Mountains to the northeast.
Some areas nearer the
river are flatter.
The highest point in the county is the summit of Brace Mountain, in
the Taconics, at 2,311 feet (704 m) above sea level. The lowest
point is sea level, along the Hudson River.
- Columbia County, New York, north
- Berkshire County,
- Litchfield County,
- Fairfield County, Connecticut, southeast
- Putnam County, New York, south
- Orange County, New York, southwest
- Ulster County, New York, west
State, County, And Town Parks
In 1990 Dutchess County had a population of 259,462.
As of the census
of 2000, there were 280,150
people, 99,536 households, and 69,177 families residing in the
county. The population density
was 350 people per square mile (135/km¬≤). There were 106,103
housing units at an average density of 132 per square mile
(51/km¬≤). The racial makeup of the county was 83.66% White
whites), 9.32% Black
, 0.03% Pacific Islander
, 2.37% from
, and 1.89%
from two or more races. 6.45% were Hispanic
of any race. 22.0% were
, 16.9% Irish
, 11.3% German
and 6.7% English
ancestry according to Census 2000
. 88.3% spoke English
, 4.8% Spanish
and 1.3% Italian
as their first language.
Based on the Census Ancestry tallies, including people who listed
more than one ancestry, Italians were the largest group in Dutchess
County with 60,645. Irish came in a very close second at 59,991. In
third place were the 44,915 Germans who barely exceeded the 44,078
people not in the 105 specifically delineated ancestry
6.45% of the population were Hispanic
of any race. Puerto
Ricans made up the largest portion of Latinos, with 2.9% of the
total county population. 2.1% of the county population was in the
category "other Hispanic or Latino". The other Hispanics and
Latinos were a varied group. About 700 were born in the Dominican
Republic, while people born in Colombia or Ecuador slightly
Costa Rica, El Salvador and Panama all had
more than 100 natives in Dutchess County. There were 1,685 people
in the county born in Mexico but they were exceeded by the total
1,894 born in South America.
There were 99,536 households out of which 34.50% had children under
the age of 18 living with them, 55.50% were married couples
living together, 10.30% had a
female householder with no husband present, and 30.50% were
non-families. 24.60% of all households were made up of individuals
and 9.00% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or
older. The average household size was 2.63 and the average family
size was 3.16.
In the county the population was spread out with 25.10% under the
age of 18, 9.40% from 18 to 24, 30.20% from 25 to 44, 23.20% from
45 to 64, and 12.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median
age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 100.10 males.
For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.20
The median income for a household in the county was $53,086, and
the median income for a family was $63,254. Males had a median
income of $45,576 versus $30,706 for females. The per capita income
for the county was
$23,940. About 5.00% of families and 7.50% of the population were
below the poverty line
, including 8.50%
of those under age 18 and 6.50% of those age 65 or over.
The per capita income and average home values have increased
noticeably in recent years mainly due to affluent residents
relocating from nearby and expensive Westchester County, NY. In
recent years, there has been a large influx of people that have
relocated from New York City, mainly from the Borough of The
The decrease in population between 1810 and 1820 was due the
separation of Putnam County
Dutchess in 1812.
2006 Census estimates
By 2006 the population of Dutchess County was estimated at 295,146.
80.3% of the population was White (non-Hispanic whites being about
77% of the population), 8.0% Black (if Hispanic Blacks are excluded
the namber falls at most to 7.8% of the population), 8.4% Hispanic
or Latino and 3.4% of the population was Asian. Chinese and Asian
Indians were by far the largest Asian groups, both numbering over
3000 people while the next largest group, Koreans, numbered just
over 1000 people.
Government and Politics
The county is governed via a county executive and a county legislature. The county legislature consists of 25 members each elected from single member districts. The county executive is elected in a countywide vote.
Dutchess County Executives
|David C. Schoentag
||January 1, 1968 - December 31, 1975
|Edward C. Scheuler
||January 1, 1976 - April, 1978
|Lucille P. Pattison
||April, 1978 - December 31, 1991
|William R. Steinhaus
||January 1, 1992 - present
- Interstate 84
traverses the county in an east-west route cutting through the
southern quadrant of the county. It is the only interstate highway
in the county.
- US 9, the Taconic State Parkway, and NY 22 are the main north-south roads
in the county.
- US 44, NY 55, and NY 199 are the other main east-west
roads in the county
Amtrak has stations in Rhinecliff, a small hamlet in the Town of Rhinebeck, and
Poughkeepsie, with both stations being served by Empire Service trains as well as other trains
that run along the line .
The latter station is the terminus
of the Hudson Line
Hudson Line also has station stops in New
Hamburg (a hamlet of the town of Poughkeepsie) and Beacon.
Harlem Line, on the eastern side of the
county, has station stops in Pawling, Wingdale, Dover Plains, and two stops in Wassaic (one along the Tenmile
River and the other the namesake
terminus of that line).
Public transportation in Dutchess County is handled by the Dutchess
County Department of Mass Transit, branded publicly as the LOOP
system. Outside of the urbanized
area of the county, most service is limited. The City of Poughkeepsie
its own limited system as well. Privately run lines connect
Poughkeepsie to New Paltz
and Beacon to
For intercity bus service, Adirondack Trailways
and Short Line Bus
also operate some
service through Poughkeepsie, Rhinebeck, and the southern part of
the county. The last time service ran outside that area was in the
late-1990s when Peter
ran service to New York City in the eastern part of
County Airport, located in the town of Wappinger, is a general aviation facility which once had
commercial service. The closest commercial airport, Stewart
International Airport, is located across the Hudson River in Newburgh.
The Hudson Valley Renegades
are a minor league baseball team affiliated with the Tampa Bay Rays
. The team is a member
of the New York - Penn
League, and play at Dutchess Stadium in Fishkill.
The Hudson Valley Bears
of four founding members of the Eastern Professional
. They play their home games at the Mid-Hudson
Civic Center in Poughkeepsie.
The Hudson Valley Hawks
team in the newly formed National
Professional Basketball League
. The team's home court is at Beacon High
School, in Beacon.
the State of New York
the State of New York
by the State of New York
by the State of New York
*: There is also a northern
border of about 0.5 miles (0.8km) in length with Berkshire
County, Massachusetts, however this is in a forested area in Taconic State Park and there is no direct
road access from Dutchess County to Berkshire County.
- Cities, Towns and Villages are official political
Colleges, universities, etc.
Public school districts
- MacCracken, Henry Noble. Old Dutchess Forever!, New
York: Hastings House, ¬©1956. LC 56-12863
- Smith, James H. History of Dutchess County, New York,
Syracuse, New York: 1882. Reprinted: Interlaken, New York: Heart of
the Lakes Publishing. ISBN 0-932334-35-0