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Hamilton County, New York

Hamilton County is a county located in the U.S. State of New York. 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.

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History When counties were established in New York State in 1683, the present Hamilton County was part of Albany County. This was an enormous county, including the northern part of New York State as well as all of the present State of Vermont and, in theory, extending westward to the Pacific Ocean. 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 Schenectady, 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 Canada. In 1784, following the peace treaty that ended the American Revolutionary War, the name of Tryon County was changed to Montgomery County in honor of the general, Richard Montgomery, who had captured several places in Canada and died attempting to capture the city of Quebec, replacing the name of the hated British governor.

In 1789, Montgomery County was reduced in size by splitting off Ontario County. The actual area split off from Montgomery County was much larger than the present county, also including the present Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Orleans, Steuben, Wyoming, Yates, and part of Schuyler and Wayne Counties.

In 1791, Montgomery County was reduced further in size by splitting off Herkimer, Otsego, and Tioga Counties. In 1802, Montgomery County was reduced further in size by splitting off a part which was combined with portions of Clinton and Herkimer Counties to form St. Lawrence County.

In 1816, Hamilton County was created by splitting it off from Montgomery.

Geography Hamilton County is in the central part of the state, northwest of Albany. It lies within the Adirondack State Park[?] and consists mostly of publicly-owned parkland.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 4,682 km² (1,808 mi²). 4,456 km² (1,720 mi²) of it is land and 226 km² (87 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 4.84% water.

Demographics As of the census of 2000, there are 5,379 people, 2,362 households, and 1,558 families residing in the county. This makes it the least populous county in New York state. The population density is 1/km² (3/mi²). There are 7,965 housing units at an average density of 2/km² (5/mi²). The racial makeup of the county is 97.73% White, 0.45% 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 are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

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

In the county the population is 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 are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 45 years. For every 100 females there are 100.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 99.40 males.

The median income for a household in the county is $32,287, and the median income for a family is $39,676. Males have a median income of $29,177 versus $21,849 for females. The per capita income for the county is $18,643. 10.40% of the population and 6.00% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 10.50% are under the age of 18 and 8.70% are 65 or older.

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