HOME

TheInfoList



OR:

Cortland County is a
county A county is a geographic region of a country used for administrative or other purposesChambers Dictionary, L. Brookes (ed.), 2005, Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd, Edinburgh in certain modern nations. The term is derived from the Old French ...
located in the U.S. state of New York. As of the 2020 census, the population of Cortland County was 46,809. The
county seat A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or parish (administrative division), civil parish. The term is in use in Canada, China, Hungary, Romania, Taiwan, and the United States. The equivalent te ...
is Cortland. The county is named after
Pierre Van Cortlandt Pierre Van Cortlandt (January 10, 1721 – May 1, 1814) was an American politician who served as the first Lieutenant Governor of New York. He was first elected to the New York Assembly in March 1768 and served in that body as the representative ...
, president of the convention at Kingston that wrote the first New York State Constitution in 1777, and first lieutenant governor of the state. Cortland County comprises the Cortland, NY Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Ithaca-Cortland, NY
Combined Statistical Area Combined statistical area (CSA) is a United States Office of Management and Budget (OMB) term for a combination of adjacent metropolitan (MSA) and micropolitan statistical areas (µSA) across the 50 US states and the territory of Puerto R ...
. The Cortland apple is named for the county.


History


Early history

Located in the glaciated
Appalachian Plateau The Appalachian Plateau is a series of rugged dissected plateaus located on the western side of the Appalachian Mountains. The Appalachian Mountains are a mountain range that run down the Eastern United States. The Appalachian Plateau is the nort ...
area of
Central New York Central New York is the central region of New York (state), New York State, including the following Administrative divisions of New York (state)#County, counties and Administrative divisions of New York (state)#City, cities: With a population ...
, midway between
Syracuse Syracuse may refer to: Places Italy *Syracuse, Sicily Syracuse ( ; it, Siracusa ; scn, Sarausa ), ; grc-att, wikt:Συράκουσαι, Συράκουσαι, Syrákousai, ; grc-dor, wikt:Συράκοσαι, Συράκοσαι, Syrā́ ...
and
Binghamton Binghamton () is a city A city is a human settlement of notable size.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London ...
, this predominantly rural county is the southeastern gateway to the
Finger Lakes The Finger Lakes are a group of eleven long, narrow, roughly north–south lakes located south of Lake Ontario in an area called the ''Finger Lakes region'' in New York (state), New York, in the United States. This region straddles the northern ...
Region. Scattered archaeological evidence indicates the Iroquois also known as the Haudenosaunee controlled the area beginning about AD 1500. What was to become Cortland County remained within Indian territory until the
American Revolution The American Revolution was an ideological and political revolution that occurred in British America between 1765 and 1791. The Americans in the Thirteen Colonies formed independent states that defeated the British in the American Revolut ...
. It became part of the Military Tract, when, in 1781, more than 1¼ million acres (5,100 km2) were set aside by the State's Legislature to compensate two regiments formed to protect the State's western section from the English and their Iroquois allies, at the close of the Revolution. To encourage settlement in the upstate isolated wilderness, the State constructed a road from Oxford through Cortland County to
Cayuga Lake Cayuga Lake (,,) is the longest of central New York (state), New York's glacial Finger Lakes, and is the second largest in surface area (marginally smaller than Seneca Lake (New York), Seneca Lake) and second largest in volume. It is just under l ...
in 1792–94. This, and construction of privately financed roads, were the major impetus to settlement. When counties were established in New York in 1683, the present Cortland County was part of Albany County, which encompassed the northern part of New York and all of the present State of
Vermont Vermont () is a U.S. state, state in the northeast New England region of the United States. Vermont is bordered by the states of Massachusetts to the south, New Hampshire to the east, and New York (state), New York to the west, and the Provin ...
, as well as indeterminate territory to west. On March 12, 1772, present day Cortland County became part of Tryon County, named for
William Tryon Lieutenant-general (United Kingdom), Lieutenant-General William Tryon (8 June 172927 January 1788) was a British Army officer and colonial administrator who served as List of governors of North Carolina (1712–1776), governor of North Carolin ...
, colonial governor of New York. In 1784, following the peace treaty that ended the
American Revolutionary War The American Revolutionary War (April 19, 1775 – September 3, 1783), also known as the Revolutionary War or American War of Independence, was a major war of the American Revolution. Widely considered as the war that secured the independence of t ...
, the name of the county was changed to honor General
Richard Montgomery Richard Montgomery (2 December 1738 – 31 December 1775) was an Irish soldier who first served in the British Army. He later became a major general in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, and he is most famous for l ...
, who had captured several places in Canada and died attempting to capture the city of
Quebec Quebec ( ; )According to the Government of Canada, Canadian government, ''Québec'' (with the acute accent) is the official name in Canadian French and ''Quebec'' (without the accent) is the province's official name in Canadian English is ...
, thus replacing the name of the locally unpopular British governor. Present day Cortland County became part of
Herkimer County Herkimer County is a County (United States), county in the U.S. state of New York (state), New York. As of the 2020 United States census, 2020 census, the population was 60,139. Its county seat is Herkimer (village), New York, Herkimer. The coun ...
in 1791, then became a part of Onondaga County when it split from Herkimer in 1794. Cortland County was formed by the splitting of Onondaga County in 1808.


Settlement of the county

Eastern New Yorkers and New Englanders, wanting new land to farm, welcomed the opening of this frontier. The first white settlement in the county was made in 1791 by Amos Todd, Joseph Beebe and Rhoda Todd Beebe, emigrants from Connecticut who paddled up the Tioughnioga River from Windsor, to live near the head of navigation in the Town of
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') (born ) was a Greek poet who is credited as the author of the ''Iliad'' and the ''Odyssey'', two epic poems that are foundational works of ancient Greek literature. Homer is considered one of the ...
. Following them came a flood of settlers who, in 1808, petitioned the State Legislature for county status. Thus, Cortland County was created from the southern half of Onondaga County as part of the Boston Ten Towns on April 8, 1808, and was named in honor of the
Pierre Van Cortlandt Pierre Van Cortlandt (January 10, 1721 – May 1, 1814) was an American politician who served as the first Lieutenant Governor of New York. He was first elected to the New York Assembly in March 1768 and served in that body as the representative ...
family - Pierre, Sr. having been the first lieutenant governor of the state.


Nineteenth century

The 76th New York Volunteer Infantry was one of the most famous of the New York units in the
Civil War A civil war or intrastate war is a war between organized groups within the same Sovereign state, state (or country). The aim of one side may be to take control of the country or a region, to achieve independence for a region, or to change go ...
. It was raised in 1861 primarily from Cortland County and the surrounding areas (about a third of the men were from the Cherry Valley area). The 76th was in most of the major battles the Army of the Potomac fought from Second Bull Run through Petersburg, at which time the three-year enlistment of most of the men ran out and the 300 or so men remaining from the 1,100 who left Cortland either returned home or transferred to other units. At the
Battle of Gettysburg The Battle of Gettysburg () was fought July 1–3, 1863, in and around the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, by Union Army, Union and Confederate States Army, Confederate forces during the American Civil War. In t ...
, the 76th New York was one of the first infantry regiments on the field, holding down the extreme right of the Union line on the first day. The regiment took huge casualties in that battle - nearly one-third of its strength - including its commander Major Andrew J. Grover, the first infantry officer killed in the battle.


Modern Cortland County

Today, Cortland county is noted for the production of CNC milling machines, hospitality supplies, medical instruments and components,
textiles Textile is an Hyponymy and hypernymy, umbrella term that includes various Fiber, fiber-based materials, including fibers, yarns, Staple (textiles)#Filament fiber, filaments, Thread (yarn), threads, different #Fabric, fabric types, etc. At f ...
,
electronic component An electronic component is any basic discrete device or physical entity in an electronic system used to affect electrons or their associated fields. Electronic components are mostly industrial products, available in a singular form and are ...
s, plastic consumer goods, components for
NASA The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA ) is an independent agencies of the United States government, independent agency of the US federal government responsible for the civil List of government space agencies, space program ...
, and a variety of other goods and services. International exporting is an integral part of many of the corporations in the area. The county's present reflects its past.
Agribusiness Agribusiness is the Industry (economics), industry, Business, enterprises, and the field of study of Agribusiness value chain, value chains in agriculture and in the Bioeconomy, bio-economy, in which case it is also called bio-business or bio-ent ...
flourishes, yet consistent with the pattern elsewhere in New York State, the number of farms has declined while farm size and yield have increased. Continued growth in the service and
light industry Light industry are Industry (economics), industries that usually are less Capital intensity, capital-intensive than heavy industry and are more consumer-oriented than business-oriented, as they typically produce smaller consumer goods. Most lig ...
sectors is contributing to the growing strength of the
Central New York Central New York is the central region of New York (state), New York State, including the following Administrative divisions of New York (state)#County, counties and Administrative divisions of New York (state)#City, cities: With a population ...
region and the
Southern Tier The Southern Tier is a geographic subregion of the broader Upstate New York region of New York (state), New York State, consisting of counties west of the Catskill Mountains in Delaware County, New York, Delaware County and geographically situ ...
region. The loss of many of its local businesses has led to the current economic decline of the region.
Cornell University Cornell University is a private statutory land-grant research university based in Ithaca, New York. It is a member of the Ivy League. Founded in 1865 by Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White, Cornell was founded with the intention to ...
,
Syracuse University Syracuse University (informally 'Cuse or SU) is a Private university, private research university in Syracuse, New York. Established in 1870 with roots in the Methodist Episcopal Church, the university has been nonsectarian since 1920. Locate ...
,
Binghamton University The State University of New York at Binghamton (Binghamton University or SUNY Binghamton) is a public university, public research university with campuses in Binghamton, New York, Binghamton, Vestal, New York, Vestal, and Johnson City, New Yor ...
, and
Ithaca College Ithaca College is a private college in Ithaca (town), New York, Ithaca, New York. It was founded by William Egbert in 1892 as a Music school, conservatory of music and is set against the backdrop of the city of Ithaca, New York, Ithaca (which is ...
are all within a 45-minute drive of the City of Cortland. The State University of New York College at Cortland and Tompkins Cortland Community College are located in the county.


Government and politics

Cortland County is a bellwether county, having voted for the national winner in every presidential election from 1976 to 2016. The city of Cortland itself, the largest city in the county, leans Democratic. Republican
Ronald Reagan Ronald Wilson Reagan ( ; February 6, 1911June 5, 2004) was an American politician, actor, and union leader who served as the 40th president of the United States from 1981 to 1989. He also served as the 33rd governor of California from 1967 ...
scored landslide wins in the county in 1980 and 1984. Democrat
Bill Clinton William Jefferson Clinton (Birth name, né Blythe III; born August 19, 1946) is an American politician who served as the 42nd president of the United States from 1993 to 2001. He previously served as governor of Arkansas from 1979 to 1981 ...
carried the county with pluralities in 1992 and 1996. Republican
George W. Bush George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is an American politician who served as the 43rd president of the United States from 2001 to 2009. A member of the Republican Party (United States), Republican Party, Bush family, and son of the 41st ...
carried the county in 2000 and 2004, defeating
Al Gore Albert Arnold Gore Jr. (born March 31, 1948) is an American politician, businessman, and environmentalist who served as the 45th vice president of the United States from 1993 to 2001 under President Bill Clinton. Gore was the Democratic Part ...
by less than 1% in 2000, and
John Kerry John Forbes Kerry (born December 11, 1943) is an American attorney, politician and diplomat who currently serves as the first United States special presidential envoy for climate. A member of the Forbes family and the Democratic Party (Unite ...
by just over 4% in 2004. In 2008,
Barack Obama Barack Hussein Obama II ( ; born August 4, 1961) is an American politician who served as the 44th president of the United States from 2009 to 2017. A member of the Democratic Party (United States), Democratic Party, Obama was the first Af ...
defeated
John McCain John Sidney McCain III (August 29, 1936 – August 25, 2018) was an American politician and United States Navy officer who served as a United States senator from Arizona from 1987 until his death in 2018. He previously served two terms ...
54-45%, and in 2012 he defeated
Mitt Romney Willard Mitt Romney (born March 12, 1947) is an American politician, businessman, and lawyer serving as the Seniority in the United States Senate, junior United States Senate, United States senator from Utah since January 2019, succeeding O ...
by a similar margin. The last Democrat to win a majority in Cortland County prior to Obama was
Lyndon Johnson Lyndon Baines Johnson (; August 27, 1908January 22, 1973), often referred to by his initials LBJ, was an American politician who served as the 36th president of the United States from 1963 to 1969. He had previously served as the 37th vice ...
in 1964. In 2020, Cortland County's streak of voting for the winner ended, as
Donald Trump Donald John Trump (born June 14, 1946) is an American politician, media personality, and businessman who served as the 45th president of the United States from 2017 to 2021. Trump graduated from the Wharton School of the University of Pe ...
won for the second time, defeating Democratic nominee
Joe Biden Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. ( ; born November 20, 1942) is an American politician who is the 46th and current president of the United States. A member of the Democratic Party (United States), Democratic Party, he previously served as the 47th ...
by a narrow margin of just 420 votes. Had the streak continued, it would have been tied with Clallam County, Washington for the longest active streak in the nation, as the streaks of longstanding bellwethers Valencia County, New Mexico and Vigo County, Indiana also ended in 2020. Cortland was one of five counties in the state that Trump carried by less than 500 votes. Cortland County's lawmaking body is the legislature, which consists of 17 members. All are elected from single member districts.


Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of , of which is land and (0.5%) is water. Cortland County is sometimes considered to be part of
Central New York Central New York is the central region of New York (state), New York State, including the following Administrative divisions of New York (state)#County, counties and Administrative divisions of New York (state)#City, cities: With a population ...
and
Southern Tier The Southern Tier is a geographic subregion of the broader Upstate New York region of New York (state), New York State, consisting of counties west of the Catskill Mountains in Delaware County, New York, Delaware County and geographically situ ...
regions of New York and is also somewhat to the southwest of the center of New York, south of
Syracuse Syracuse may refer to: Places Italy *Syracuse, Sicily Syracuse ( ; it, Siracusa ; scn, Sarausa ), ; grc-att, wikt:Συράκουσαι, Συράκουσαι, Syrákousai, ; grc-dor, wikt:Συράκοσαι, Συράκοσαι, Syrā́ ...
and north of
Binghamton Binghamton () is a city A city is a human settlement of notable size.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London ...
.


Adjacent counties

* Onondaga County - north * Madison County - northeast * Chenango County - east * Broome County - south * Tompkins County - west * Tioga County - southwest * Cayuga County - northwest


Major highways

*
Interstate 81 Interstate 81 (I-81) is a north–south (physically northeast–southwest) Interstate Highway in the eastern part of the United States. Its southern terminus is at Interstate 40, I-40 in Dandridge, Tennessee, Dandridge, Tennessee; its nort ...
* U.S. Route 11 *
New York State Route 13 New York State Route 13 (NY 13) is a state highway that runs mainly north–south for between New York State Route 14, NY 14 in Horseheads (village), New York, Horseheads and New York State Route 3, NY 3 west of Pulaski, N ...
* New York State Route 41 * New York State Route 90 * New York State Route 392


Demographics


2020 Census


2000 census

As of the
census A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring, recording and calculating information about the members of a given population Population typically refers to the number of people in a single area, whether it be a city A city is a ...
of 2000, there were 48,599 people, 18,210 households, and 11,617 families residing in the county. The
population density Population density (in agriculture: Stock (disambiguation), standing stock or plant density) is a measurement of population per unit land area. It is mostly applied to humans, but sometimes to other living organisms too. It is a key geographical ...
was 97 people per square mile (38/km2). There were 20,116 housing units at an average density of 40 per square mile (16/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 96.95%
White White is the lightest color Color (American English) or colour (British English) is the visual perception, visual perceptual Physical property, property deriving from the spectrum of light interacting with the photoreceptor cells of th ...
, 0.86%
Black Black is a color which results from the absence or complete Absorption (electromagnetic radiation), absorption of visible spectrum, visible light. It is an achromatic color, without hue, like white and grey. It is often used symbolically or fi ...
or
African American African Americans (also referred to as Black Americans and Afro-Americans) are an Race and ethnicity in the United States, ethnic group consisting of Americans with partial or total ancestry from sub-Saharan Africa. The term "African American ...
, 0.27% Native American, 0.41% Asian, 0.01%
Pacific Islander Pacific Islanders, Pasifika, Pasefika, or rarely Pacificers are the peoples of the list of islands in the Pacific Ocean, Pacific Islands. As an ethnic group, ethnic/race (human categorization), racial term, it is used to describe the original p ...
, 0.32% from other races, and 1.18% from two or more races. 1.16% of the population were
Hispanic The term ''Hispanic'' ( es, hispano) refers to people, Spanish culture, cultures, or countries related to Spain, the Spanish language, or Hispanidad. The term commonly applies to countries with a cultural and historical link to Spain and to Vic ...
or Latino of any race. 17.3% were of English, 16.9% Irish, 14.2% German, 13.0% Italian and 9.9% American ancestry according to Census 2000. 96.0% spoke English and 1.4% Spanish as their first language. There were 18,210 households, out of which 31.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.20% were married couples living together, 10.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.20% were non-families. 26.50% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.40% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.00. In the county, the population was spread out, with 23.70% under the age of 18, 15.50% from 18 to 24, 26.50% from 25 to 44, 21.80% from 45 to 64, and 12.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 93.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.00 males. The median income for a household in the county was $34,364, and the median income for a family was $42,204. Males had a median income of $30,814 versus $22,166 for females. The
per capita income Per capita income (PCI) or total income measures the average income earned per person in a given area (city, region, country, etc.) in a specified year. It is calculated by dividing the area's total income by its total population. Per capita i ...
for the county was $16,622. About 9.30% of families and 15.50% of the population were below the
poverty line The poverty threshold, poverty limit, poverty line or breadline is the minimum level of income deemed adequate in a particular country. The poverty line is usually calculated by estimating the total cost of one year's worth of necessities for t ...
, including 16.40% of those under age 18 and 10.80% of those age 65 or over. As of 2014 the largest self-reported ancestry groups in Cortland County, New York were: * English - 17.7% * Irish - 12.9% * German - 11.9% * Italian - 8.8% * "American" - 6.9% * French (except Basque) - 2.8% * Dutch - 2.7% * Polish - 2.2% * Scottish - 2.1% As of 2015 the largest self-reported ancestry groups in Cortland County, New York were: * English - 18.8% * Irish - 12.3% * German - 10.8% * Italian - 8.1% * "American" - 7.3% * Dutch - 2.5% * Scottish - 2.3% * French (except Basque) - 2.2% * Polish - 2.1% As of 2016 the largest self-reported ancestry groups in Cortland County, New York were: * English - 19.8% * Irish - 11.9% * German - 10.2% * Italian - 8.0% * "American" - 6.9% * Dutch - 2.4% * Scottish - 2.0% * French (except Basque) - 2.3% * Polish - 2.1%


Education

Area schools include: *
State University of New York at Cortland State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine ''State Magazine'' is a digital magazine published by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Global Talent Management. Its mission is to acquaint Department o ...
* Tompkins Cortland Community College * Cincinnatus Central School District * Cortland City School District * Homer Central School District * Marathon Central School District * McGraw Central School District


Communities


Larger Settlements


Towns

* Cincinnatus * Cortlandville * Cuyler *
Freetown Freetown is the capital and largest city of Sierra Leone. It is a major port city on the Atlantic Ocean The Atlantic Ocean is the second-largest of the world's five oceans, with an area of about . It covers approximately 20% of Earth' ...
* Harford *
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') (born ) was a Greek poet who is credited as the author of the ''Iliad'' and the ''Odyssey'', two epic poems that are foundational works of ancient Greek literature. Homer is considered one of the ...
* Lapeer *
Marathon The marathon is a long-distance foot race with a distance of , usually run as a road running, road race, but the distance can be covered on trail routes. The marathon can be completed by running or with a run/walk strategy. There are also w ...
* Preble * Scott *
Solon Solon ( grc-gre, wikt:Σόλων, Σόλων;  BC) was an History of Athens, Athenian statesman, constitutional lawmaker and poet. He is remembered particularly for his efforts to legislate against political, economic and moral decline in A ...
* Taylor * Truxton *
Virgil Publius Vergilius Maro (; traditional dates 15 October 7021 September 19 BC), usually called Virgil or Vergil ( ) in English, was an ancient Rome, ancient Roman poet of the Augustan literature (ancient Rome), Augustan period. He composed three ...
*
Willet The willet (''Tringa semipalmata'') is a large shorebird in the family Scolopacidae. It is a relatively large and robust sandpiper, and is the largest of the species called "shanks" in the genus Genus ( plural genera ) is a taxonomic rank ...


Notable people

* William Dillon, composer, lyricist, and vaudevillian *
Ronnie James Dio Ronald James Padavona (July 10, 1942 – May 16, 2010), known professionally as Ronnie James Dio, was an American Heavy metal music, heavy metal singer. He fronted and founded numerous bands throughout his career, including Elf (band), Elf, Rainb ...
, former frontman for
Rainbow A rainbow is a meteorology, meteorological phenomenon that is caused by Specular reflection, reflection, refraction and dispersion (optics), dispersion of light in water droplets resulting in a optical spectrum, spectrum of light appearing in ...
and
Black Sabbath Black Sabbath were an English rock music, rock band formed in Birmingham in 1968 by guitarist Tony Iommi, drummer Bill Ward (musician), Bill Ward, bassist Geezer Butler and vocalist Ozzy Osbourne. They are often cited as pioneers of heavy met ...
; a street in the city of Cortland is named for him (Dio Way) * Nancy Duffy, Syracuse news personality; founder of the Syracuse St. Patrick's Day Parade *
John McGraw John Joseph McGraw (April 7, 1873 – February 25, 1934) was an American Major League Baseball (MLB) player and manager (baseball), manager who was for almost thirty years manager of the New York Giants (NL), New York Giants. He was also the ...
, Hall of Fame Major League Baseball player and manager from the town of Truxton * Alton B. Parker, Democratic candidate for president in 1904 * Arthur C. Sidman, playwright and vaudevillian *
Elmer Ambrose Sperry Elmer Ambrose Sperry Sr. (October 12, 1860 – June 16, 1930) was an American inventor An invention is a unique or novelty (patent), novel machine, device, method, composition, idea or process. An invention may be an improvement upon a machi ...
, prolific inventor who invented gyroscopic compass and held over 400 patents; the USS ''Sperry'' is named after him


See also

*
List of counties in New York There are 62 county (United States), counties in the U.S. state, state of New York (state), New York. The first 12 were created immediately after the British took over the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam; two of these counties were later aboli ...
* National Register of Historic Places listings in Cortland County, New York * Svend O. Heiberg Memorial Forest


References


Further reading

*


External links

*
Weather forecast for Cortland County
*
Cortland County Economic Development

Cortland County Chamber of Commerce

Cortland County Convention & Visitors Bureau



Cortland County Historical Aerial Photographs of New York
Cornell University Library & Cornell Institute for Resource Information Sciences
Cortland Public History
{{Authority control 1808 establishments in New York (state) Populated places established in 1808 Counties of Appalachia