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Seneca County is a county located in the U.S. state of New Yorkmarker. As of the 2000 census, the population was 33,342. The county seat is Waterloomarker. The name is from the Iroquois (Seneca) that occupied part of the region.

History

The area covered by Seneca County straddles the prehistoric territories of both Seneca and Cayuga Nations of the Iroquois League. When counties were established by Europeans in New York in 1683, the present Seneca County was part of Albany County. This was an enormous county, including the northern part of New York as well as all of the present state of Vermontmarker and, in theory, extending westward to the Pacific Oceanmarker. This county was reduced in size on July 3, 1766 by the creation of Cumberland County, and further on March 16, 1770 by the creation of Gloucester County, both containing territory now in Vermont.

On March 12, 1772, what was left of Albany County was split into three parts, one remaining under the name Albany County. One of the other pieces, Tryon County, contained the western portion (and thus, since no western boundary was specified, theoretically still extended west to the Pacific). The eastern boundary of Tryon County was approximately five miles west of the present city of Schenectadymarker, and the county included the western part of the Adirondack Mountains and the area west of the West Branch of the Delaware River. The area then designated as Tryon County now includes 37 counties of New York State. The county was named for William Tryon, colonial governor of New York.

In the years prior to 1776, most of the Loyalists in Tryon County fled to Canadamarker. In the fall of 1779 on orders from commander-in-chief General George Washington the Sullivan Expedition conducted a scorched earth campaign against the Iroquois who sided with the Loyalists in the Revolutionary War. Sullivan's path destroyed Cayuga and Seneca villages along the east shore of Seneca Lakemarker.

In 1784, following the peace treaty that ended the American Revolutionary War, the name of Tryon County was changed to Montgomery Countymarker in honor of the general, Richard Montgomery, who had captured several places in Canada and died attempting to capture the city of Quebecmarker, replacing the name of the hated British governor.

In 1789, Montgomery County was reduced in size by the splitting off of Ontario Countymarker. The actual area split off from Montgomery County was much larger than the present county, also including the present Alleganymarker, Cattaraugusmarker, Chautauquamarker, Eriemarker, Geneseemarker, Livingstonmarker, Monroemarker, Niagaramarker, Orleansmarker, Steubenmarker, Wyomingmarker, Yatesmarker, and part of Schuylermarker and Wayne Countiesmarker.

Herkimer Countymarker was one of three counties split off from Montgomery County (the others being Otsegomarker and Tioga Countiesmarker) in 1791.

Onondaga Countymarker was formed in 1794 by the splitting of Herkimer County.

Cayuga Countymarker was formed in 1799 by the splitting of Onondaga County. This county was, however, much larger than the present Cayuga County. It then included the present Seneca and Tompkins Countiesmarker and part of Wayne Countymarker.

In 1804, Seneca County was formed by the splitting of Cayuga County.

In 1817, Seneca County was reduced in size by combining portions of Seneca and the remainder of Cayuga County to form Tompkins Countymarker. Part of this territory, the current towns of Covertmarker and Lodi, were returned to Seneca County in 1819.

In 1823, Seneca County was reduced in size by combining portions of Seneca and Ontario Counties to form Wayne Countymarker.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 391 square miles (1,011 km²), of which, 325 square miles (842 km²) of it is land and 66 square miles (170 km²) of it (16.80%) is water.

Seneca County is in the western part of New York in the Finger Lakesmarker Region, bounded on the east by Cayuga Lakemarker and on the west by Seneca Lakemarker.

The Finger Lakes National Forest is in the south part of the county.

Both the New York State Thruway and the Erie Canal cross the northern part of the county.

The former Seneca Army Depotmarker occupies a portion of land between Cayuga and Seneca Lakes. The Willard Drug Treatment Center and Five Points Correctional Facilitymarker are two NYS DOCS prisons located in the county. Sampson State Parkmarker is located next to the former Army base.

Adjacent counties



Major highways



National protected areas



Demographics

As of the census of 2000, there were 33,342 people, 12,630 households, and 8,626 families residing in the county. The population density was 103 people per square mile (40/km²). There were 14,794 housing units at an average density of 46 per square mile (18/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 95.02% White, 2.27% African American, 0.25% Native American, 0.68% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.67% from other races, and 1.09% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.98% of the population. 18.9% were of Italian, 16.7% German, 14.6% English, 13.4% Irish and 8.9% Americanmarker ancestry according to Census 2000. 95.3% spoke English and 1.6% Spanish as their first language.

There were 12,630 households out of which 31.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.60% were married couples living together, 10.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.70% were non-families. 25.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.60% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.51 and the average family size was 2.99.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.80% under the age of 18, 7.50% from 18 to 24, 28.80% from 25 to 44, 23.80% from 45 to 64, and 15.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 100.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.50 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $37,140, and the median income for a family was $45,445. Males had a median income of $32,512 versus $24,320 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,630. About 8.00% of families and 11.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.80% of those under age 18 and 7.30% of those age 65 or over.

Government and Politics

The County is governed by a fourteen-member Board of Supervisors[8988].

Towns and Villages



See also

References



External links




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