Mahopac, New York

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Mahopac, New York
Census-designated place & hamlet
Mahopac, New York is located in New York
Mahopac, New York
Mahopac, New York
Location within the state of New York,
Coordinates: 41°22′11″N 73°44′15″W / 41.36972°N 73.73750°W / 41.36972; -73.73750Coordinates: 41°22′11″N 73°44′15″W / 41.36972°N 73.73750°W / 41.36972; -73.73750
Country United States
State New York
County Putnam
Area
 • Total 6.4 sq mi (16.7 km2)
 • Land 5.3 sq mi (13.7 km2)
 • Water 1.1 sq mi (2.9 km2)
Elevation 666 ft (203 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 8,369
 • Density 1,300/sq mi (500/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 10541
Area code(s) 845
FIPS code 36-44534
GNIS feature ID 0956273

Mahopac /ˈmɑː.hˌpæk/ is a hamlet (and census-designated place) in the town of Carmel in Putnam County, New York. An exurb some 47 miles (76 km) north of New York City, Mahopac is located on US Route 6 on the county's southern central border with Westchester County. As of the 2010 census, the population was 8,369.[1]

History[edit]

Mahopac and Mahopac Falls have played central roles in the history of Putnam County.

Originally inhabited by the Wappinger Native Americans, an Algonquian tribe, the hamlet's land was patented in 1697 by Adolphus Philipse, son of a wealthy Anglo-Dutch gentryman. During the French and Indian War, Wappingers throughout Putnam County traveled north to Massachusetts to fight for the British.

When the Crown refused to return their land after the war, most Wappingers abandoned the area and joined with other displaced Native Americans elsewhere. Farmers and their families migrated to Mahopac from as far away as Cape Cod and rented land from the Philipse family. Wheelwrights and blacksmiths set up shops to assist the tenant farmers.

Although no battles were fought in Mahopac during the American Revolution, the area was strategically important due to its location. With troop encampments in nearby Patterson, Yorktown, West Point, and Danbury, Connecticut, it was a cross-roads between key Colonial garrisons. Soldiers were stationed in Mahopac Falls to guard the Red Mills, an important center for grinding grain and storing flour for the American troops.

Upon Colonial victory in the Revolution, the Tory-sympathizing Philipse family lost its claim to the land, which was then resold to farmers by New York State. After the incorporation of Putnam County in 1812 the Mahopac area grew steadily. By the middle-19th century the hamlet had become a summer resort community. The New York Central Railroad brought vacationers north from New York City to Croton Falls. Hotels would often have competing races of decorated horse-drawn coaches bringing passengers from the train to Lake Mahopac. After the Civil War a direct rail spur was laid, creating boom times for the village.

The locale remained primarily a summer resort until after World War II, when nearby highways such as the Taconic State and Saw Mill River parkways began to make travel by automobile convenient. With the passing of the last passenger service to Mahopac in 1959, the hamlet evolved into a year-round community, many of its residents making the commute to New York City.

Mahopac today[edit]

The hamlet of Mahopac encircles a picturesque 587-acre (238 ha) lake, from which it draws its name. The lake contains three islands, Fairy, Petre, and Canopus, all privately owned. Fairy Island sports multiple homes accessible via a short causeway; Petre boasts a single Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired residence, the A. K. Chahroudi Cottage; and Canopus has undeveloped land available for purchase. Boating, fishing and other water sports are permitted on the lake. Slips and support services are provided by two marinas.

Besides Lake Mahopac, other lakes within the Mahopac CDP include Kirk Lake, Lake Casse, Bloomer Pond, Glencoma Lake, Lake Secor and Teakettle Spout Lake.

Mahopac has a 33,000-square-foot (3,100 m2) library, featuring multiple reading rooms overlooking Lake Mahopac, abundant computers, a law library and conference rooms.

The Carmel Historical Society Museum in the Old Town Hall on McAlpin Avenue features many fascinating area artifacts.

Mahopac has had several motion pictures filmed on location. Among them are scenes from the 1982 comedy film Tootsie. An exterior shot is used in which the Mahopac Farm Playhouse exterior was converted to read "SYRACUSE FARM PLAYHOUSE". The property, which at times has been host to flea markets and antique shows, was originally a dairy farm, which produced dairy products sold as far south as New York City. The Playhouse was closed in the mid-1980s, and the property is now being considered for commercial development on the border.

Mahopac Falls[edit]

In colonial times a large gristmill sat near the present-day intersection of Route 6N, Hill Street, and Myrtle Avenue. Drawing its water from the streams that drained Kirk Lake and Lake Mahopac, it was the largest building in the entire county. Early settlers to the area, tenant farmers renting land from the Philipse family, provided grain for its wheel. Over time the mill's red paint came to identify the area, known to this day as "Red Mills".

It was the falls of the waters of the pond that drove the mill that gave the larger community comprising the southern half of the hamlet of Mahopac the name "Mahopac Falls". Although the famous mill there is gone, one of its original millstones forms a part of the front steps of the Red Mills Branch of Mahopac National Bank.

Lake Secor[edit]

Lake Secor, located 1 mile (1.6 km) west of Mahopac CDP, received its name from the Secor family who were the first white people to officially call the land their own. In the early 20th century Secor turned into a "bungalow city" where the urbanites spent their summer weekends. At first the area was largely Germans, later in the mid-1950s it peaked opening up to all family types. In the 1940s and '50s a summer camp for Jewish children (Secor Lake Camp) operated on the other side of the lake from the bungalows. In the 1980s Secor was divided half and half between the people that resided there and the city folk who came up on weekends. Today it has over 500 families living on the 26 roads that enclose it.

Geography[edit]

Mahopac is located at 41°22′11″N 73°44′15″W / 41.36972°N 73.73750°W / 41.36972; -73.73750 (41.369657, -73.737463).[2]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the Mahopac CDP has a total area of 6.4 square miles (16.7 km2), of which 5.3 square miles (13.7 km2) is land and 1.1 square miles (2.9 km2), or 17.57%, is water.

While the hamlet of Carmel is the seat of the county government, Mahopac, the largest population center in the town of Carmel, hosts the Town Hall. Both Mahopac (ZIP code 10541) and Mahopac Falls (10542) have their own post offices.

Demographics[edit]

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 8,369 people, 2,943 households, and 2,258 families residing in the hamlet. The population density was 1,585.3 per square mile (617.6/km²). There were 3,260 housing units at an average density of 585.1/sq mi (225.8/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 91.1%White, 2.1% African American, 0.1% Native American, 2.0% Asian, 0% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10.9% of the population.

There were 2,943 households out of which 23.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.6% were married couples living together, 8.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.7% were non-families. 17.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.74 and the average family size was 3.28.

In the hamlet the population was spread out with 25.3% under the age of 18, 7.7% from 18 to 24, 30.8% from 25 to 44, 26.4% from 45 to 64, and 9.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 99.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.7 males.

The median income for a household in the community was $95,189, and the median income for a family was $91,148. Males had a median income of $52,315 versus $36,419 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $44,494. The percent of persons below poverty level was 5.0%.

The median value of owner-occupied housing units was 407,900.

Mahopac Central School District[edit]

The Mahopac Central School District is divided into six schools: an all-kindergarten facility (the Falls School), three 1-5 schools (Lakeview, Fulmar Road, and Austin Road), a Middle School (Mahopac MS) and a High School (Mahopac HS).

Historically, Mahopac had five one-room school houses that were united into one central school (now Lakeview Elementary School) in 1935.

In athletics, Mahopac boasts strong legacies in wrestling (John Degl 1991 NYS Champion & Joe Mazzurco 2000 NYS Champion) ice hockey (Section I Division II Champions 2000-2001 [The programs inaugural season]/2001-2002/2002-2003), basketball, softball, volleyball, gymnastics, field hockey, baseball (Dave Fleming 1987 MHS Graduate & former pitcher for the Seattle Mariners), football, track & field (Nick Lakis 1968 MHS graduate and former mile record holder at U.S. Naval Academy), and lacrosse. School teams have won several New York state championships, including the Boys Varsity Lacrosse team in 1996. A long-time rivalry exists between the "Indians" and the neighboring Carmel High School Rams.

Since 1979, Mahopac has had a regionally competing marching band (The Cavaliers) and since 1982 the rock ensemble Illusion.

Notable people[edit]

Pronunciation differences[edit]

Mahopac is an Algonquin word with definitions that historic linguists have attributed to "Lake of the Great Serpent" or just "Great Lake". "Ma" indicating water, the accent of Mahopac is on the second syllable. Long-time Mahopac residents claim that "Ma-HO-pac" was used by residents until the hamlet's evolution into a full-time community after World War II.

In spite of a 3-2 vote by the Carmel Town Board in favor of the traditional Indian pronunciation,[11] no consensus has emerged, the modern-day first-syllable-inflected "MAY-o-pac" being used by a large number of residents today.

Carmel itself has a pronunciation issue as well, with local residents unanimously pronouncing it CAR-mel, while visitors usually assume it's pronounced car-MEL until instructed otherwise.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Mahopac CDP, New York". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved June 14, 2012. 
  2. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  3. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  4. ^ http://www.filmreference.com/film/74/Jay-Acovone.html
  5. ^ Pearlman, Jeff. "Dave Fleming, My Hometown Hero". ESPN. ESPN. Retrieved 7/5/2011.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  6. ^ Pearlman, Jeff. [http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story? page=pearlman/080609&sportCat=mlb "Dave Fleming, My Hometown Hero"]. ESPN. ESPN. Retrieved 7/5/2011.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  7. ^ DelCampo, Michael. "DelCampo Bio". Michael DelCampo's website. Retrieved 6/5/2011.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  8. ^ Marc, Weiner. "Weinerville Productions LLC - About Us". Weinerville Productions LLC. Retrieved 7/11/2011.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  9. ^ Winkler, Henry. "IMDB biography". IMDB. IMDB. Retrieved 7/5/2011.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  10. ^ Nackman, Barbara (2008-12-15). "Revolutionary Road in Mahopac". LoHud. Retrieved 7/5/2011.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  11. ^ Associated Press. "Vote Ends Old Battle Over Name of Hamlet", The New York Times, December 30, 1988. Accessed May 11, 2007.

External links[edit]