In 1683, New York State established its first twelve counties. Dutchess County was one of them. Its boundaries at that time included the present Putnam County, and a small portion of the present Columbia County (the towns of Clermont and Germantown). Until 1713, Dutchess was administered by Ulster County. In 1812, Putnam County was detached from Dutchess.
Dutchess County is located in eastern New York State, between the Hudson River on its west and the New York-Connecticut border on its east, about halfway between the cities of Albany and New York. It contains two cities: Beacon and Poughkeepsie. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 2,138 km (825 mi). 2,076 km (802 mi) of it is land and 62 km (24 mi) of it is water. The total area is 2.88% water. The terrain of the county is mostly hilly, especially in the Hudson Highlands in the southwestern corner and the Taconic Mountains to the northeast. Some areas nearer the river are flatter. The highest point in the county is the summit of Brace Mountain, in the Taconics, at 704 m (2,311 feet) above sea level. The lowest point is sea level, along the Hudson
As of the Census of 2000, there are 280,150 people, 99,536 households, and 69,177 families residing in the county. The population density is 135/km (350/mi). There are 106,103 housing units at an average density of 51/km (132/mi). The racial makeup of the county is 83.66% White, 9.32% Black or African American, 0.22% Native American, 2.52% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 2.37% from other races, and 1.89% from two or more races. 6.45% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race. There are 99,536 households out of which 34.50% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.50% are married couples living together, 10.30% have a female householder with no husband present, and 30.50% are non-families. 24.60% of all households are made up of individuals and 9.00% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.63 and the average family size is 3.16.
In the county the population is spread out with 25.10% under the age of 18, 9.40% from 18 to 24, 30.20% from 25 to 44, 23.20% from 45 to 64, and 12.00% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 37 years. For every 100 females there are 100.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 98.20 males. The median income for a household in the county is $53,086, and the median income for a family is $63,254. Males have a median income of $45,576 versus $30,706 for females. The per capita income for the county is $23,940. 7.50% of the population and 5.00% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 8.50% of those under the age of 18 and 6.50% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.
(Source: Wikipedia Encyclopedia...wikipedia.org)
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