St. Lawrence County, New York

St. Lawrence County, New York
St. Lawrence County, New York
Seal of St. Lawrence County, New York
Map of New York highlighting St. Lawrence County
Location in the state of New York
Map of the U.S. highlighting New York
New York's location in the U.S.
Founded 1802
Seat Canton
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

2,821 sq mi (7,306 km²)
2,686 sq mi (6,957 km²)
136 sq mi (352 km²), 4.82%
 - (2010)
 - Density

41/sq mi (16/km²)

St. Lawrence County is a county located in the U.S. state of New York. As of the 2010 census, the population was 111,944. The county seat is Canton. The county is named for the Saint Lawrence River, which in turn was named for the Catholic saint on whose Feast day the river was discovered by French explorers. St. Lawrence County is the largest county in New York based on area (New York County is the smallest).



When counties were established in New York State in 1683, the present St. Lawrence County was part of Albany County. This was an enormous territory, 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. The 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. The other two were called Tryon County (later renamed Montgomery County) and Charlotte County (later renamed Washington County). Tryon County contained the western portion (and, since no western boundary was specified, theoretically 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 includes what are now 37 counties of New York State. The county was named for William Tryon, colonial governor of New York. Charlotte County contained the eastern portion of Albany County.

In 1784, following the peace treaty that ended the American Revolutionary War, the name "Charlotte County" was changed to Washington County to honor George Washington, the American Revolutionary War general and later President of the United States of America. Tryon County was changed to Montgomery County to honor the general, Richard Montgomery, who had captured several places in Canada and died trying to capture the city of Quebec; it replaced the name of the hated British governor.

In 1788, Clinton County was split off from Washington County. This was a much larger area than the present Clinton County, including part of what would later become St. Lawrence County, as well as several other counties or county parts of the present New York State.

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.

St. Lawrence County is part of 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. The first was the splitting off in 1794 of Onondaga County. This county was larger than the current Onondaga County, including the present Cayuga, Cortland, and part of Oswego Counties. This was followed by the splitting off in 1798 from Herkimer County of two portions: one, Oneida County, was larger than the current Oneida County, including the present Jefferson, Lewis, and part of Oswego Counties; another portion, together with a portion of Tioga County, was taken to form Chenango County.

In 1799, Clinton County was reduced in size by the splitting off of Essex County from Clinton County.

In 1802, parts of Clinton, Herkimer, and Montgomery Counties were taken to form the new St. Lawrence County. At that time Ogdensburg was the county seat. In 1828 the county seat was moved to Canton. The selection of Canton as the county was a compromise by the state legislature to end competition between factions supporting Ogdensburg and Potsdam for the county seat.[1]


On September 5, 1944, a 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck the county, which was centered in Massena. The earthquake was felt from Canada south to Maryland, and from Maine west to Indiana. The earthquake was also the strongest earthquake in New York State history.[2]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1810 7,885
1820 16,037 103.4%
1830 36,354 126.7%
1840 56,706 56.0%
1850 68,617 21.0%
1860 83,689 22.0%
1870 84,826 1.4%
1880 85,997 1.4%
1890 85,048 −1.1%
1900 89,083 4.7%
1910 89,005 −0.1%
1920 88,121 −1.0%
1930 90,960 3.2%
1940 91,098 0.2%
1950 98,897 8.6%
1960 111,239 12.5%
1970 111,991 0.7%
1980 114,254 2.0%
1990 111,974 −2.0%
2000 111,931 0%
2010 111,944 0%

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 111,931 people, 40,506 households, and 26,936 families residing in the county. The population density was 42 people per square mile (16/km²). There were 49,721 housing units at an average density of 18 per square mile (7/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 94.51% White, 2.38% African American, 0.87% Native American, 0.71% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.69% from other races, and 0.81% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.79% of the population. 16.9% were of French, 14.1% Irish, 13.9% American, 11.6% English, 8.1% French Canadian, 7.1% German and 5.6% Italian ancestry according to Census 2000. 94.9% spoke English, 1.5% Spanish and 1.2% French as their first language.

There were 40,506 households out of which 31.80% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.50% were married couples living together, 10.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.50% were non-families. 26.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 2.99.

In the county the population was spread out with 23.40% under the age of 18, 13.80% from 18 to 24, 27.40% from 25 to 44, 22.40% from 45 to 64, and 13.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 103.30 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 102.10 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $32,356, and the median income for a family was $38,510. Males had a median income of $33,135 versus $22,253 for females. The per capita income for the county was $15,728. About 12.30% of families and 16.90% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.30% of those under age 18 and 10.30% of those age 65 or over.

County information

Saint Lawrence County is home to St. Lawrence University, State University of New York at Potsdam, Clarkson University, New York State Ranger School, and the State University of New York at Canton. Part of the County is in the Adirondack Park and includes Lake Ozonia.


Cities, towns, and villages

=> Label in parentheses is official level of government.

School districts

There are 17 School Districts centered in St. Lawrence County, all under the juridstiction of the St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES( Supervisory District along with Harrisville Central School District in Lewis County, New York.

Brasher Falls Central School District: St. Lawrence Central School, Brasher Falls, NY, Home of the Larries, SLC
Canton Central School District: Hugh Williams Senior High School, Canton, NY
Clifton-Fine Central School District: Clifton-Fine Central School, Star Lake, NY
Colton-Pierrepont Central School District: Colton-Pierrepont Central School, Colton, NY
Edwards-Knox Central School District: Edwards-Knox Central School, Russell, NY
Gouverneur Central School District: Gouverneur Junior/Senior High School, Gouverneur, NY
Hammond Central School District: Hammond Central School, Hammond, NY
Hermon-Dekalb Central School District: Hermon-Dekalb Central School, Dekalb Junction, NY
Heuvelton Central School District: Heuvelton Central School, Heuvelton, NY
Lisbon Central School District: Lisbon Central School, Lisbon, NY
Madrid-Waddington Central School District: Madrid-Waddington Central School, Madrid, NY
Massena Central School District: Massena Senior High School, Massena, NY
Morristown Central School District: Morristown Central School, Morristown, NY
Norwood-Norfolk Central School District: Norwood-Norfolk Central School, Norfolk, NY
Ogdensburg City School District: Ogdensburg Free Academy, Ogdensburg, NY
Parishville-Hopkinton Central School District: Parishville-Hopkinton Central School, Parishville, NY
Potsdam Central School District: Potsdam High School, Potsdam, NY

Athletics: All schools in St. Lawrence County compete the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Section X Northern Athletic Conference (

Adjacent counties and areas

See also


  1. ^ Linda Casserly, County Courthouse Has 'Fiery' History, St. Lawrence Plaindealer, May 23, 2000. Archived copy on website of New York 4th Judicial District, St. Lawrence County.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

External links

Coordinates: 44°30′N 75°04′W / 44.50°N 75.07°W / 44.50; -75.07

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”