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Oswego County, New York

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Oswego County
Oswego County Courthouse
Oswego County Courthouse
Official seal of Oswego County
Map of New York highlighting Oswego County
Location within the U.S. state of New York
Map of the United States highlighting New York
New York's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 43°28′N 76°12′W / 43.47°N 76.2°W / 43.47; -76.2
Country United States
State New York
Largest cityOswego
 • Total1,312 sq mi (3,400 km2)
 • Land952 sq mi (2,470 km2)
 • Water360 sq mi (900 km2)  27%
 • Total117,525 [1]
 • Density123.5/sq mi (47.7/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional districts22nd, 24th

Oswego County is a county in the U.S. state of New York. As of the 2020 census, the population was 117,525.[2] The county seat is Oswego.[3] The county name is from a Mohawk language word meaning "the pouring out place", referring to the point at which the Oswego River feeds into Lake Ontario at the northern edge of the county in the city of Oswego.

Oswego County is part of the Syracuse, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area.


When counties were established in the British colony of New York in 1683, the present Oswego County was part of Albany County. This was an enormous county, including the northern part of what is now 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 in the British colony, 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 to honor 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, the size of Montgomery County was reduced by the splitting off of Ontario County from Montgomery. 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.

Oswego County was partly in Macomb's Purchase of 1791.

In 1791, Herkimer County was one of three counties split off from Montgomery (the other two being Otsego, and Tioga County). This was much larger than the present county, however, and was reduced by a number of subsequent splits.

In 1794, Onondaga County was created from a part of Herkimer County. This county was larger than the current Onondaga County, including the present Cayuga, Cortland, and part of Oswego counties.

In 1798, Oneida County was created from a part of Herkimer County. This county was larger than the current Oneida County, including the present Jefferson, Lewis, and part of Oswego counties.

In 1805, Oneida County was reduced in size by the splitting off of Jefferson and Lewis counties.

In 1816, Oswego County was created as New York State's 48th county from parts of Oneida and Onondaga counties.

In 1841, businessmen in Oswego attempted to divide Oswego County into two counties. They failed to persuade the State to do so, however. Occasionally, the topic still comes up today by dividing the county into an east part and a west part, with the east portion being renamed "Salmon County".

At various times, beginning in 1847 and as late as 1975, attempts were made to move the county seat to the Village of Mexico. However, none of these attempts succeeded.

On April 20, 2002, around 6:50 am, many residents of Oswego County were shaken awake by a magnitude 5.2 earthquake centered near Plattsburgh, New York. Minor damage to a Fire Hall in Altmar was the only report of damage. No injuries were sustained.

During 1–12 February 2007, a major lake effect snowfall dumped over ten feet of snow in many places in Oswego County, resulting in several roof collapses, some communities being cut off, and some people being snowed-in in their homes. A state of emergency was declared for the county, and the National Guard was sent in to help clear the snow.

Government and politics

United States presidential election results for Oswego County, New York[4]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 32,138 58.85% 21,143 38.71% 1,333 2.44%
2016 27,688 57.94% 17,095 35.77% 3,005 6.29%
2012 19,980 44.81% 23,515 52.73% 1,096 2.46%
2008 23,571 47.76% 24,777 50.21% 1,001 2.03%
2004 26,325 51.01% 24,133 46.76% 1,149 2.23%
2000 23,249 47.96% 22,857 47.15% 2,373 4.89%
1996 17,159 37.57% 20,440 44.75% 8,074 17.68%
1992 18,530 36.38% 16,990 33.36% 15,411 30.26%
1988 25,362 57.37% 18,430 41.69% 419 0.95%
1984 31,481 68.39% 14,347 31.17% 206 0.45%
1980 22,816 53.63% 15,343 36.07% 4,382 10.30%
1976 23,949 59.19% 16,332 40.36% 182 0.45%
1972 29,109 71.84% 11,317 27.93% 92 0.23%
1968 20,041 54.39% 14,636 39.72% 2,168 5.88%
1964 12,415 33.35% 24,788 66.59% 23 0.06%
1960 24,013 60.69% 15,544 39.28% 11 0.03%
1956 29,277 76.87% 8,809 23.13% 0 0.00%
1952 27,609 70.66% 11,444 29.29% 19 0.05%
1948 19,095 58.03% 12,820 38.96% 989 3.01%
1944 19,733 60.99% 12,593 38.92% 29 0.09%
1940 22,688 62.62% 13,459 37.15% 83 0.23%
1936 22,803 66.33% 11,068 32.20% 505 1.47%
1932 18,322 56.90% 13,314 41.35% 565 1.75%
1928 21,849 64.39% 11,639 34.30% 442 1.30%
1924 18,576 65.08% 7,864 27.55% 2,102 7.36%
1920 17,905 66.37% 8,045 29.82% 1,029 3.81%
1916 9,854 57.72% 6,210 36.38% 1,008 5.90%
1912 5,996 37.47% 5,256 32.84% 4,751 29.69%
1908 10,447 58.22% 6,172 34.39% 1,326 7.39%
1904 11,174 60.63% 6,152 33.38% 1,104 5.99%
1900 11,160 60.44% 6,605 35.77% 699 3.79%
1896 11,411 62.81% 6,401 35.23% 356 1.96%
1892 10,012 56.44% 6,729 37.93% 998 5.63%
1888 11,296 58.37% 7,429 38.38% 629 3.25%
1884 9,976 54.71% 7,434 40.77% 825 4.52%

The Oswego County Legislature has 25 members, elected from equal population districts, reduced from 36 in 1993. The legislators are split between seven committees that meet monthly and also attend a general meeting once per month. The seven standing committees as of December 2019 were Government, Courts and Consumer Affairs; Public Safety; Infrastructure, Facilities and Technology; Economic Development and Planning; Health; Human Services; and Finance and Personnel.[5]

In the 2019 general election, the county GOP won three more seats previously occupied by Democrats, expanding its control of the legislature to 23–2. The two Democratic candidates who were elected ran unopposed, and there was only one other Democrat running for any of the 25 seats. Meanwhile, a proposition that sought to expand legislator terms from two years to four years was rejected, with 65.06 percent of 17,701 total votes countywide going against the proposition.[6]

District representation (2020)[7]

District Number Municipality Representative
1 Sandy Creek, Redfield, Boylston Michael G. Yerdon (R)
2 Orwell, Albion, Williamstown, Richland Herbert G. Yerdon (R)
3 Pulaski, Richland Edward Gilson (R)
4 Amboy, Hastings, Parish, Williamstown, West Monroe David Holst (R)
5 Constantia Roy Reehil (R)
6 Hastings, West Monroe John Martino (R)
7 Mexico Brad Trudell (R)
8 Palermo, Hastings, Schroeppel Paul House (R, C, I)
9 Central Square, Hastings James Weatherup, Legislature Chairman (R, I)
10 Volney, Granby, Schroeppel Mary Chesbro (R, C)
11 Volney Linda Lockwood, Legislature Vice Chairwoman (R)
12 Schroeppel, Hastings Richard Kline (R, C)
13 New Haven, Scriba Patrick Twiss, Majority Whip (R)
14 Scriba Stephen Walpole (R, I)
15 City of Oswego Nathan Emmons (R, C, I)
16 City of Oswego Thomas Drumm, Minority Whip (D, WOR)
17 City of Oswego, Scriba Laurie Mangano-Cornelius (R, C, I)
18 City of Oswego Robert Wilmott (R, C, I)
19 Minetto, Oswego (Town), Hannibal, Granby Marie Schadt, Minority Leader (D, C)
20 Oswego Town Tim Stahl (R, C)
21 Hannibal Terry Bucky Wilbur, Majority Leader (R, C, I)
22 Granby, City of Fulton James Karasek (R)
23 Granby Morris Sorbello Jr. (R, C)
24 City of Fulton, Granby Marc Greco (R, I)
25 City of Fulton Ralph Edward Stacy Jr. (R)

Oswego County has two representatives in the state assembly, with Republicans Will Barclay and Brian Manktelow[8] both serving as assemblymen for portions of the county. Barclay, of Pulaski was unanimously elected by a vote of his GOP Assembly peers to lead the State Assembly Republicans on Jan. 7, 2020.[9]

Sen. Patty Ritchie, R-Oswegatchie, represents the 48th district that includes Oswego County in the state senate.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,312 square miles (3,400 km2), of which 952 square miles (2,470 km2) is land and 360 square miles (930 km2) (27%) is water.[10]

Oswego County is in northwestern New York State, just north of Syracuse and northwest of Utica, on the eastern shore of Lake Ontario. Part of the Tug Hill Plateau is in the eastern part of the county and, at 1,550 feet (470 m), is the highest point.[11] The Salmon River Falls, a 110-foot (34 m) waterfall, is a popular sightseeing destination in the northeastern portion of the county.[12]

There are two harbors in the county, Oswego Harbor at the mouth of the Oswego River and Port Ontario on the Salmon River. The first major port of call on the Great Lakes is the Port of Oswego Authority dock.

Adjacent counties

Major highways


Historical population
Census Pop.
U.S. Decennial Census[13]
1790–1960[14] 1900–1990[15]
1990–2000[16] 2010–2019[2]

As of the census[17] of 2000, there were 122,377 people, 45,522 households, and 31,228 families residing in the county. The population density was 128 people per square mile (50/km2). There were 52,831 housing units at an average density of 55 per square mile (21/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 97.17% White, 0.59% Black or African American, 0.41% Native American, 0.42% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.48% from other races, and 0.93% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.30% of the population. 15.5% were of Irish, 14.0% German, 13.7% Italian, 13.3% English, 9.6% American, 7.9% French and 5.3% Polish ancestry according to Census 2000. 96.2% spoke English and 1.7% Spanish as their first language.

There were 45,522 households, out of which 35.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.80% were married couples living together, 10.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.40% were non-families. 24.30% of all households were made up of individuals, and 9.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.60 and the average family size was 3.08.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 26.80% under the age of 18, 10.90% from 18 to 24, 28.90% from 25 to 44, 22.10% from 45 to 64, and 11.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 97.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.40 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $36,598, and the median income for a family was $43,821. Males had a median income of $34,976 versus $23,938 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,853. About 9.70% of families and 14.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.10% of those under age 18 and 9.50% of those age 65 or over.

Oswego County is also home to two colleges: State University of New York at Oswego in the Town of Oswego and the Fulton Branch Campus of Cayuga County Community College in the City of Fulton.


A map of towns, cities and villages in Oswego County, New York
A map of towns, cities and villages in Oswego County, New York

Oswego County has 22 towns, 2 cities, and 10 villages.

Larger Settlements

# Location Population Type Area
1 Oswego 18,142 City Lake Shore
2 Fulton 11,896 City Riverbank
3 Brewerton 4,029 CDP Lake Oneida
4 Phoenix 2,382 Village Riverbank
5 Pulaski 2,365 Village Lake Shore
6 Central Square 1,848 Village Lake Oneida
7 Mexico 1,624 Village Lake Shore
8 Constantia 1,182 CDP Lake Oneida
9 Minetto 1,069 CDP Riverbank
10 Sand Ridge 849 CDP Riverbank
11 Sandy Creek 771 CDP Lake Shore
12 Cleveland 750 Village Lake Oneida
13 Lacona 582 Village Lake Shore
14 Hannibal 555 Village Riverbank
15 Parish 450 Village East
16 ††Altmar 407 CDP East

† - County Seat

†† - Former Village

‡ - Not Wholly In This County



Swimming places in the county include

on Lake Ontario[18]
Unofficial swimming places include
  • "The Rocks" in the city of Oswego, on the west side of the west breakwater defining Oswego Harbor (so outside of the harbor)
Swimming on Oneida Lake
  • Taft Bay Park[18] at Bernhards Bay, New York and other swimming on Oneida Lake. Oswego County includes the majority of the northern shore of the lake, running east to the hamlet of Cleveland, New York. It also includes all of the lake surface from the north shore to the south shore, which is the northern edge of Onondaga and Madison counties. So swimming out from beaches on the southern shore, even, puts you in Oswego County. Oswego County runs east along the south shore almost to the hamlet of Lakeport.
Pool swimming includes


Oswego's economy is most prominent as industry; in 2012, manufactured shipments made up $2.1 billion of the local economy. Retail made up the next most prominent sector, totaling $1.2 billion or more than $10,000 per resident. Wholesale merchants also made $368 million sales the same year. Services made up the final total, equal to over $500 million in food service, healthcare, accommodation, and social services.[20]

See also


  1. ^ "US Census 2020 Population Dataset Tables for New York". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 2, 2022.
  2. ^ a b "US Census QuickFacts". Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved August 29, 2021.
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  4. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections".
  5. ^ "2019 Legislative Standing Committees". Oswego County Government. Retrieved January 2, 2020.
  6. ^ Reitz, Matthew. "County term length prop fails, GOP adds to supermajority". Oswego County News Now. Retrieved January 2, 2020.
  7. ^ White, Shannon. "Oswego County Legislature". Retrieved August 10, 2016.
  8. ^ "Brian Manktelow - Assembly District 130 |Assembly Member Directory | New York State Assembly". New York State Assembly.
  9. ^ "Barclay elected state Assembly GOP leader". The Palladium-Times. Retrieved January 8, 2020.
  10. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Archived from the original on May 19, 2014. Retrieved January 6, 2015.
  11. ^ Oswego County Clerk's Office, NY Archived 2012-02-06 at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ Minetor, Randi (2014). Hiking waterfalls in New York: a guide to the state's best waterfall hikes. Guildford, Conn.: Falcon Guides. pp. 67–69. ISBN 978-0762787500. Retrieved February 20, 2015.
  13. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 6, 2015.
  14. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved January 6, 2015.
  15. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 6, 2015.
  16. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 6, 2015.
  17. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Visit Oswego County's Beaches and Pools".
  19. ^ a b c d e f "Oswego County Division of Promotion and Tourism: Swimming". Archived from the original on May 10, 2008. Retrieved September 4, 2015.
  20. ^ "Quickfacts: Oswego County, New York". U.S. Census Bureau. July 1, 2017. Retrieved November 6, 2018.

External links

This page was last edited on 22 July 2022, at 01:39
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