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Hamilton County is a county located in the U.S. state of New Yorkmarker. It is named after Alexander Hamilton, the only member of the New York State delegation who signed the United States Constitution in 1787 and later the first United States Secretary of the Treasury. Its county seat is Lake Pleasant. It is one of only two counties that lie entirely within the Adirondack Park (Essexmarker is the other). It is the least populated of New York's 62 counties and is also the most sparsely populated county in the eastern half of the United States, with a population density of just over 3 people/sq mi.


For the history of Hamilton County prior to 1816 see Montgomery Countymarker, New Yorkmarker

On 1816-04-12, Hamilton County was created by partitioning 1,800 Square Miles from Montgomery County , but due to low population it remained unorganized and administered from Montgomery County, N.Y. until it was recognized as sufficiently organized for self-government on 1838-01-01. The organization process was completed by Summer of 1847.

On 1860-04-06, Fulton County was partitioned, with 10 Square Miles of land in Sacandaga Park transferred to Hamilton County.

On 1915-05-24, land was swapped between Hamilton and Essex counties, with Hamilton ceding Fishing Brook Mountain for Indian Lakemarker. Hamilton gained an additional 20 Square Miles, whereas Essex County lost 30 Square Miles. This left Hamilton with its present size of 1,830 Square Miles

The former town of Gilman was dissolved in 1860. The original county seat was Sageville, now part of Lake Pleasant.


Hamilton County is in the north central part of the state, northwest of Albanymarker. It lies entirely within Adirondack Park and consists mostly of publicly owned parkland.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,808 square miles (4,682 km²), of which, 1,720 square miles (4,456 km²) of it is land and 87 square miles (226 km²) of it (4.84%) is water.

The snowfall in Hamilton County averages 100 inches per year .

Adjacent counties


As of the census of 2000, there were 5,379 people, 2,362 households, and 1,558 families residing in the county. The population density was 1/km² (3/sq mi); both the total population and population density rank lowest in the state of New Yorkmarker. There were 7,965 housing units at an average density of 5 per square mile (2/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 97.73% White, 0.45% Black or African American, 0.26% Native American, 0.15% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.67% from other races, and 0.69% from two or more races. 1.06% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 16.9% were of Irish, 15.7% German, 15.2% English, 10.9% French, 7.3% Americanmarker and 5.7% Italian ancestry according to Census 2000. 97.5% spoke English and 1.7% French as their first language.

There were 2,362 households out of which 23.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.70% were married couples living together, 6.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.00% were non-families. 29.60% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.24 and the average family size was 2.74.

In the county the population was spread out with 19.70% under the age of 18, 5.20% from 18 to 24, 24.20% from 25 to 44, 30.90% from 45 to 64, and 20.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 45 years. For every 100 females there were 100.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.40 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $32,287, and the median income for a family was $39,676. Males had a median income of $29,177 versus $21,849 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,643. About 6.00% of families and 10.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.50% of those under age 18 and 8.70% of those age 65 or over.

Government and Politics

The county is the most consistently Republican of New York State. In the last 23 Presidential elections the Republican candidate only lost once, that loss being when Barry Goldwater failed to win a single county in the state. In the 2008 U.S. Presidential election, John McCain carried Hamilton County by a 26.9% margin over Barack Obama, with Obama winning statewide by a virtually equal margin over McCain. Hamilton gave McCain the highest margin of victory in the state.

In state elections it was the only county to be won by Howard Mills over incumbent Chuck Schumer in the 2004 U.S. Senate election. It also voted for John Faso over Eliot Spitzer for Governor in 2006, and for John Spencer 55.5%-42.1% over incumbent Hillary Clinton for the U.S. Senate in 2006.

Towns, villages, and other locations

  • => Label in parentheses indicates official political designation.

County information

Because Hamilton County is entirely within the Adirondack Park, it has a low population of year-round residents, but this population increases at least fivefold during summer months.

Tourism is almost the sole industry of the county. Another large sector is employment by government agencies, including the school districts. There is no agriculture due to the short growing season and the potential for frost during every month. Logging, retail sales, and a few small industries contribute to the economy.

See also


  1. New York. Laws of New York;1816; 39th Session; Chapter 120; Section 1; Page 16.
  2. New York. Laws of New York;1837; 60th Session; Chapter 238; Section 1; Page 227.
  3. New York. Laws of New York;1860; 83rd Session; Chapter 178; Page 298.
  4. New York. Laws of New York;1915; 138th Session; Chapter 718; Section 1; Page 2364.
  5. Geographie Electorale
  6. U.S. Election Atlas
  7. CNN Election Results for New York

External links

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