Place:Putnam, New York, United States

Watchers
NamePutnam
Alt namesPutnamsource: Getty Vocabulary Program
TypeCounty
Coordinates41.433°N 73.733°W
Located inNew York, United States     (1812 - )
See alsoDutchess, New York, United StatesParent county (source: Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990)
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Putnam County is a county located in the U.S. state of New York. As of the 2010 census, the population was 99,710. The county seat is Carmel. Putnam County formed in 1812 from Dutchess County and is named for Israel Putnam, a hero in the French and Indian War and a general in the American Revolutionary War.

Putnam County is included in the New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA Metropolitan Statistical Area. It is located in the lower Hudson River Valley. Midtown Manhattan is around a one-hour drive, and Grand Central Terminal is approximately 1 hour, 20 minute train ride from the county.

It is one of the most affluent counties in America, ranked 7th by median household income, and 43rd by per-capita income, according to the 2012 American Community Survey and 2009-2013 American Community Survey, respectively.

Contents

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

In 1609, a Native American people called the Wappinger inhabited the east bank of the Hudson River. They farmed, hunted, and fished throughout their range, often encountering Dutch fur traders. They obtained metal tools and goods such as alcohol and firearms in exchange for furs.[1]

The colonial Province of New York and the Connecticut Colony negotiated an agreement on November 28, 1683, establishing their border as east of the Hudson River, and north to Massachusetts. Dutchess county was organized as one of New York's twelve counties. It included all of today's Putnam County and two towns in the present Columbia county. Until 1713, Dutchess was administered by Ulster county.

In 1691, a group of Dutch traders purchased a tract of land from the Wappingers that spanned from the Hudson River to the Connecticut border. Six years later they sold it to wealthy Dutch-American merchant Adolphus Philipse, who obtained a Royal sanction for a "Highland Patent" (later to be known as the Philipse Patent) that encompassed most of today's Putnam County.[1][2] Unknown at that time was a veer in the river's path to the northwest at the Hudson Highlands. This generated a dispute over a roughly 2-mile-wide section of border between northern Westchester County and then-Dutchess counties and the Connecticut Colony; it came to be known as "The Oblong".

In 1737, the New York Colonial Assembly designated the Philipse Patent as the South Precinct of Dutchess County. The Philipses began leasing farms to migrants from Massachusetts, Connecticut, Long Island, and lower Westchester. After Adolph Philipse's death, the Patent was divided in 1754 into nine lots granted to three heirs: Mary Philipse, Philip Philipse, and Susannah Philipse Robinson. During the French and Indian War, many of the Wappinger went to Stockbridge, Massachusetts.[1][2]

Compared to other parts of the Hudson Valley, Putnam County had slow settlement. It was privately owned and settlement was limited to tenant farmers willing to pay the Philipse family for leases. Secondly, it was mostly hilly and rocky, making it unappealing to men looking for tillable cropland. Its use was generally limited to dairy farming and wood cutting. The first non-tenant settlers in the county were along its eastern edge. The ambiguous border with Connecticut attracted farmers from New England. They assumed that Philipse did not own the disputed area.

Among early settlers were the Hayt family, which built a farm called The Elm in 1720. Jacob Haviland settled in the Oblong in 1731 in what became known as Haviland Hollow. The first village in the county was Fredericksburg, now the hamlet of Patterson.

During the Revolution, the Philipses stayed loyal to the Crown. As a consequence, their lands were confiscated by the New York government. It sold the Philipse Patent along with the rest of their holdings. The dispute over The Oblong was resolved in the aftermath of the war, with the heavily settled tract being incorporated as the first of two versions of the Town of Southeast. Also resolved were two "Gores", the Beekman Gore and the Rombout Gore, which being geographically similar to the Livingston and Beekman patents they abutted, were ceded by the Philipses to Dutchess County in 1758 and 1771 respectively.

Due to the increasing population of the Southern Precinct of Dutchess County and the great distance of these communities from the county seat,[3] Poughkeepsie, Putnam was split from Dutchess in 1812. It was organized as an independent county.[1] It encompassed all of the Philipse Patent and the Oblong abutting it, less a triangular area in the farthest northwest reach of the Patent. There, a lowland near Fishkill Creek isolated from the rest of Putnam County and its adjacent upland drainage leading into the Hudson Highlands to the south, were ceded to Dutchess. Putnam travelers mostly used boats and ships along the Hudson River. Boats transporting goods traveled up the Hudson to ports, mainly at Peekskill, New York. They were transported by road into Putnam County, or goods were unloaded in Putnam County at Cold Spring, New York.[1] Such transport suffered in winter, when the river froze. At that time, little food or goods could be shipped to the county.

The Philipstown Turnpike was created in 1815 as a toll road from Cold Spring to Connecticut. The wagons that traveled the road would transport produce from eastern Putnam County and iron ore from the mines. The route of the turnpike can roughly be traced today: Rt 301 from Cold Spring to Farmers Mills Road, to White Pond Road to Pecksville, then Holmes Rd to Patterson, then Quaker Hill Rd to Connecticut.[1] Transportation improved with the advent of the railroad, namely the Harlem Line, which was built in the 1840s, connecting Putnam by rail to New York City. Originally there were four stations on the Harlem line in Putnam County: Brewster, Dykemans, Towners, and Patterson. Today only the Brewster and Patterson stops remain; a new one called Southeast was added in modern times.

Putnam County played an important role in the Civil War. One third of the county's men between the ages of 15 and 55 served in the military during the war years.[1] During the post-Civil War years, industry and agriculture suffered losses as the economy contracted. Iron, which was produced in the Highland Mountains, could be found elsewhere. Agriculture was also affected greatly. The increasing need for drinking water in New York City led the city to search for sources in the Hudson Valley. In Putnam County, much of the farmland was flooded to create reservoirs. The abandoning of farms, the creation of reservoirs, and the preservation of the remaining open land resulted in scenic lands that drew large amounts of tourism from New York City.[1]

By the 20th century, improved roads brought vacationers from New York City. The Taconic State Parkway was constructed during the Great Depression as one of numerous infrastructure projects in the state and country. This brought more vacationers from the city, who were attracted to the scenic lands and the inexpensive hotels, inns, and summer houses. Putnam County's population doubled during the summer months.[1]

After World War II, Putnam County became an exurb of New York City. Rapid suburban development occurred and the county became a bedroom community. However, the protection of Putnam county's reservoirs inherently limited development, as much of the land in the county is close to wetlands or reservoirs.[1]

Timeline

Date Event Source
1812 County formed Source:Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources
1812 Land records recorded Source:Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources
1820 First census Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990
1820 No significant boundary changes after this year Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990

Population History

source: Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990
Census Year Population
1820 11,268
1830 12,628
1840 12,825
1850 14,138
1860 14,002
1870 15,420
1880 15,181
1890 14,849
1900 13,787
1910 14,665
1920 10,802
1930 13,744
1940 16,555
1950 20,307
1960 31,722
1970 56,696
1980 77,193
1990 83,941

Research Tips

External links

  • Outstanding guide to Putnam County family history and genealogy resources (FamilySearch Research Wiki). Birth, marriage, and death records, censuses, wills, deeds, county and town histories, cemeteries, churches, newspapers, libraries, and genealogical societies.
  • www.rootsweb.com/~nyputnam/


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