Canajoharie, New York
Canajoharie, New York
The "pot that washes itself" located just south of the Village of Canajoharie on the Canajoharie Creek
|• Type||Town Council|
|• Town Mayor||Jim Blair (R)|
|• Town Council|
|• Total||43.10 sq mi (111.63 km2)|
|• Land||42.60 sq mi (110.34 km2)|
|• Water||0.50 sq mi (1.29 km2)|
| • Estimate |
|• Density||84.81/sq mi (32.74/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-4 (EDT)|
Canajoharie (//) is a town in Montgomery County, New York, United States. The population was 3,730 at the 2010 census. Canajoharie is located south of the Mohawk River on the south border of the county. The Erie Canal passes along the north town line. There is also a village of Canajoharie in the town. Both are east of Utica and west of Amsterdam.
These were settled as European-American jurisdictions, named for the historic Mohawk village of the same name, which was also known as the Mohawk Upper Castle.
The town is near the former site of Canajoharie, an important village of the Mohawk nation that also became known as the Upper Castle. The Mohawk had as their territory most of the central area of present-day New York from the Hudson River west to where Oneida territory started. They also used the St. Lawrence River valley as hunting grounds after 1600. They dominated the fur trade with the French based in central Quebec, and with Dutch and later English in eastern New York. French, Dutch and later English trappers and traders came to this Mohawk village to trade. Both the French and Dutch married or had unions with Mohawk women, increasing their ties with the people. Their mixed-race children married into the Dutch and later English communities. Many of their sons also became interpreters or traders.
Anglo-Europeans began settling in the area around 1730 and the Mohawk gradually adopted certain English customs in their village. Because the Mohawk and three other Iroquois nations were allied with the British during the Revolutionary War, they were forced to cede most of their lands in New York after the United States victory. The state sold millions of acres of land to speculators and private owners.
The town of Canajoharie was consumed by fire 3 times causing an ordinance to be passed prohibiting homes to be constructed of wood. Therefore, many of the older homes in the town are made of brick or locally quarried stone.
After the revolutionary war George Washington visited Canajoharie after surveying the damage to nearby Cherry Valley, NY. He stayed the night at the Van Alstyne home a common meeting place. The Van Alstyne house has long been referred to by some as Ft. Rensselaer; the actual Ft.Rensselaer (destroyed sometime before the French-Indian War) was in nearby Ft. Plain, NY.
The modern town was formed in 1788, but was reduced to form the towns of Minden (1798) and Root (in part, 1823). While the Mohawk Valley developed with the completion of the Erie Canal, the project also enabled considerable migration from New York to the Midwest. The population of the town in 1865 was 4,248.
Beech-Nut, the baby food producer, was founded in Canajoharie in 1891 during the period of early industrialization in the river valley. It served as the largest employer in the town for more than a century. In March 2011, the Beech-Nut factory moved out of Canajoharie, relocating to a new factory in the nearby town of Florida, near Amsterdam on the south side of the river, still in Montgomery County.
- Susan B. Anthony, women's rights pioneer, taught school here
- Frank Barbour, football player, coach, and businessman
- Joseph Brant (1743–1807), Mohawk chief
- Molly Brant (1736–1796), Mohawk leader
- Thomas Burdick, leader in early Latter Day Saint movement, Mormon pioneer, politician in California
- Alfred Conkling, lawyer, statesman, and jurist
- Frederick Conkling, son of Alfred Conkling and brother of Roscoe Conkling; became congressman for state of New York
- Josiah Failing, 4th Mayor of Portland, Oregon; gained wealth as entrepreneur through general merchandise
- Bernhard Gillam, political cartoonist; died of typhoid in Canajoharie
- Myron Grimshaw, Major League Baseball player; right fielder for Boston Red Sox 1905-1907
- Dan Hunt, football head coach, Colgate University
- Thomas James, former slave of Asa Kimball who became minister in upstate New York
- John Keyes, first Adjutant General of Connecticut
- Jacob Klock, colonel of 2nd regiment of Tryon County militia during Revolutionary War
- James Knox, U.S. Representative from Illinois
- Mary Anne Krupsak, lawyer and politician, Lieutenant Governor of New York 1975-78
- Sean MacFarland, Lieutenant General, Army, Commanding General of 1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss, Texas, later Commanding General of III Corps and Fort Hood, Texas
- Charles McVean, Congressman for New York; while in Canajoharie, was editor of town's newspaper
- George A. Mitchell, founder of Cadillac, Michigan
- Ots-Toch, 17th Century Mohawk woman from Canajoharie who married Dutch trader Cornelius Anthonisse Van Slyck, founding Van Slyck family in New Netherland
- Edwin M. Randall, Chief Justice for Florida
- Hendrick Theyanoguin (1692–1755), Mohawk leader
- Benjamin Van Alstyne, head coach of Michigan State University basketball team 1927–1949
- Amy Vedder, ecologist and primatologist involved in conservation work with mountain gorillas
- Rebecca Winters, Mormon pioneer
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 43.1 square miles (111.7 km2), of which 42.6 square miles (110.4 km2) is land and 0.50 square miles (1.3 km2), or 1.16%, is water.
The New York State Thruway crosses the northern part of the town, following the river. New York State Route 5S parallels the Thruway. New York State Route 10 is a north-south highway, intersecting the Thruway and NY-5S at Canajoharie village.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,797 people, 1,492 households, and 1,026 families residing in the town. The population density was 88.5 people per square mile (34.2/km²). There were 1,637 housing units at an average density of 38.2 per square mile (14.7/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 97.02% White, 0.63% Black or African American, 0.40% Native American, 0.50% Asian, 0.32% from other races, and 1.13% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.13% of the population.
There were 1,492 households out of which 33.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.0% were married couples living together, 11.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.2% were non-families. 26.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.00.
In the town, the population was spread out with 26.3% under the age of 18, 7.5% from 18 to 24, 25.8% from 25 to 44, 23.7% from 45 to 64, and 16.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females, there were 94.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.0 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $31,701, and the median income for a family was $39,646. Males had a median income of $29,107 versus $22,617 for females. The per capita income for the town was $16,702. About 11.0% of families and 11.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.8% of those under age 18 and 3.3% of those age 65 or over.
Communities and locations in the town
- Ames – A village in the south part of the town on NY-10.
- Bowmans Creek – A stream in the south part of the town.
- Budd Hill – A location at the south town line, south of Ames.
- Buel – A hamlet in the southwest part of the town on Bowmans Creek. The community and much of the south part of Canajoharie were once called Bowmans Creek after early settler Jacob Bowman.
- Canajoharie – A village in the north part of the town on the Mohawk River and NY-10.
- Canajoharie Creek – A stream in the south central part of the town.
- Canajoharie Falls – A waterfall located south of the Village of Canajoharie.
- Fort Plain – A village that is partly in the town at the western town line.
- Maple Hill – A location east of Marshville.
- Mapletown – A location near the east town line, named after local trees.
- Marshville – A hamlet south of Canajoharie village on NY-10.
- Sprout Brook – A hamlet in the southwest part of the town on Bowmans Creek.
- Van Deusenville – A hamlet near the town line in the southwest part of the town.
- Waterville – A hamlet northeast of Ames.
References in popular culture
- They Might Be Giants featured a song titled "Canajoharie" on their 2011 album Join Us (2011).
- Canajoharie is the title of a melancholic, Pop inspired piano piece at the album Mia Brentano’s Hidden Sea: 20 Songs for 2 Pianos by Benyamin Nuss & Max Nyberg (2018).
Canajoharie is the location of Richardson Brands Co. (www.richardsonbrands.com), which manufactures candies including Richardson Pastel Mints.
- "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved Jul 5, 2017.
- "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Canajoharie town, Montgomery County, New York". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved November 15, 2012.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
- Burke Jr, T. E., & Starna, W. A. (1991). Mohawk Frontier: The Dutch Community of Schenectady, New York, 1661-1710. SUNY Press. p. 26
- Burke (1991), Mohawk Frontier, p. 93
- "Beech-Nut ends production in Canajoharie," The Leader-Herald, 27 March 2011
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Mia Brentano, Canajoharie on YouTube
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|Wikisource has the text of the 1879 American Cyclopædia article Canajoharie.|