Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/New York
NEW YORK, a State in the North Atlantic Division of the North American Union; bounded by Ontario, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, Long Island Sound, and the Atlantic Ocean; one of the original 13 States; number of counties, 62; capital, Albany; area, 47,620 square miles; pop. (1890) 5,997,853; (1900) 7,268,012; (1910) 9,113,279; (1920) 10,385,227.
Topography.—The Adirondack system lies in the N. E. corner, W. of Lake Champlain, and contains the only great forest remaining as a public domain within the boundaries of the State. Its highest peaks are Mount Marcy, 5,379 feet; Mount MacIntyre, 5,183 feet; and Haystack, 4,919 feet. Other high peaks are Skylight, Whiteface, Clinton, Dix, Baldface, and Hopkins. S. of the Adirondacks lie the Catskills, noted for their scenic beauty, and as a summer resort. These mountains form the termination of a chain extending into the State from New Jersey, and are a continuation of the Blue Ridge range. Another branch enters the State at its S. boundary and terminates in the Highlands on the Hudson. These mountains range in altitude from 1,500 to 3,500 feet. Among the more prominent are Beacon Hill, Bull Hill, and Butter Hill. A third range extends N. as far as the Mohawk, and reappearing on the N. side of the river continues toward Lake Champlain, connecting with the Adirondacks. The W. portion of the State is undulating, descending in rolling terraces to Lake Ontario. The river systems are divided into two divisions, one flowing N. to the Great Lakes, and St. Lawrence, and the other reaching the Atlantic by the Hudson. The Hudson river, the most important in the State, rises in the Adirondack Mountains and is navigable for 150 miles. The St. Lawrence forms 100 miles of the Canadian boundary. Other important rivers are the Mohawk, entering the Hudson at Cohoes, the Susquehanna, formed by the Chenango and Tioga, the Delaware, Niagara, Black, Genesee, Oswego, and Allegheny. The lakes are numerous and noted for their beauty. One half of Lakes Ontario, and Champlain, and the E. end of Lake Erie are property of the State. Lake George, S. of Lake Champlain, is an extensive sheet of water and is a noted resort. The central portion of the State has an extensive lake system, containing Seneca, Cayuga, Oneida, Keuka, and Canandaigua lakes. The Adirondack region is full of lakes, including Long, Schroon, Upper and Lower Saranac, Placid, and Raquette. Chautauqua, in the S. W., and Saratoga and Otsego in the E. are among the many pleasure resorts. The waterfalls in the State are numerous, and include Niagara Falls, Trenton Falls, Genesee Falls, Portage, Taghkanie, and those near Ithaca, and in Watkins Glen. There are many large islands, Manhattan, containing the greater part of New York City, Long Island, Staten Island, Coney Island, and Fire Island are on the S. Shore; and the St. Lawrence river contains over 700 small islands belonging to New York. The entire State is noted for its scenery; the Palisades, Highlands, and Catskills on the Hudson, Lake George, and Lake Champlain, the islands in the St. Lawrence, numerous waterfalls, chasms, inland lakes, and glens, all abound in historical traditions and are of great interest to the tourist. The chief harbors are New York, on New York Bay; Dunkirk and Buffalo on Lake Erie; Tonawanda and Lewiston, on Niagara river; Genesee, Sodus, Oswego, Sacketts Harbor, and Cape Vincent on Lake Ontario; Ogdensburg on the St. Lawrence; Rouse's Point, Plattsburg, and Whitehall, on Lake Champlain; and Sag Harbor on the E. end of Long Island.
Geology.—Nearly all the geological
formations are present in New York.
The Archæan is represented in the
Adirondacks and the Highlands on the
Hudson by gneisses and granites. The
Palæozoic constitutes four-fifths the
area of the State and is represented by
schists, slates, and metamorphosed rocks
in the E. and by massive sandstones in
the Catskills. The Palæozoic is
represented by the Cambrian, Silurian and
Devonian periods. The Triassic and
Jurassic are represented by Newark
sandstones and shales, in Rockland
county; and the Pleistocene, by glacial
drift, and lacustrine
a and estuarine
clays covering a great part of the State.
The Pleistocene ice sheet covered the
entire State and is responsible for many
of the details of topography.
Soil and Productions.—About one-half the area of the State is adapted to cultivation. The principal forest trees are the maple, oak, pine, elm, hickory, beech, birch, ash, hemlock, spruce, cedar, poplar, willow, whitewood, chestnut, basswood, butternut, sycamore, locust, ailantus, black walnut, yew, and sumach. Agriculture is carried on to a large extent. New York being one of the leading agricultural States in the Union. The chief agricultural crops in 1919 were as follows: corn, 35,260,000 bushels, valued at $58,532,000; oats, 29,580,000 bushels, valued at $24,551,000; wheat, 11,178,000 bushels, valued at $24,32,000; hay, 6,539,000 tons, valued at $134,870,000; beans, 1,450,000 bushels, valued at $7,105,000; potatoes, 39,567,000 bushels, valued at $57,372,000. Much attention is paid to dairy and market farming, and the State ranks first in the production of buttre and milk.
Mineral Production.—New York ranks among the first of the States in the production of iron ore. In 1918 there were shipped from the iron mines of the State 889,970 long tons of iron ore, valued at $5,802,807. The value of the clay products amounts to over $12,000,000 annually. Salt is an important mineral product. Over 2,000,000 tons are produced annually with a value of about $6,000,000. The value of the cement products is about $7,000,000 annually. Other important mineral products are aluminum, ferro alloys, petroleum, sand and gravel. The total value of the mineral production of the State in 1917 was $52,123,552.
Manufactures.—The river systems with their extensive water power, the proximity of the Pennsylvania coal fields, and the facilities for transportation make New York one of the most prominent manufacturing States. The following figures relate to the census of 1914. Number of establishments, 48,203; wage earners, 1,057,857; capital invested, $3,334,278,000; amount paid for materials, $2,108,607,000; value of products, $3,814,661,000. Niagara Falls gives enormous power which is turned into electricity and used in the manufacture of aluminum, caborundum, and machinery. Schenectady is famous for its locomotives and electrical apparatus, Balston Spa for its paper mills, Elmira for its car shops, Oswego for flour mills, Kingston for hydraulic cement, Haverstraw for bricks, Rochester for optical goods, Syracuse for salt, and Brooklyn, New York City, Buffalo, Utica, Albany, Troy, Binghamton, Yonkers, and Long Island City for general manufactures. The principal articles of manufacture include cotton, woolen, and silk goods, boots and shoes, clothing, tobacco, liquors, foundry and machine shop products, paper, flour and grist, locomotives, electrical goods, machinery, furniture, household and agricultural implements, toys and novelties, leather goods, and glass.
Banking.—On Oct. 31, 1919, there were reported 485 National banks in operation, with an aggregate capital stock of $179,125,000; outstanding circulation, $71,646,134; and United States bonds and deposits, $76,302,400. There were also 210 State banks, with $39,603,000 in capital, $61,911,000 in surplus; and $1,270,298 in resources; 89 private banks, with $1,521,000 in capital, $2,868000 in surplus, and $23,358,000 in resources; 141 mutual and stock savings banks, with $2,179,034,000 in savings de- posits, $181,127,000 in surplus, and $2,367,040,000 in resources; and 101 loan and trust companies, with $136,043,000 in capital, $206,490,000 in surplus, and $3,654,027,000 in resources. The exchanges at the various clearing houses in the year ending Sept. 30, 1919, were as follows: New York, $214,703,444,000; Buffalo, $1,429,378,000; Rochester, $454,421,000; and Albany, $252,248,000.
Education.—The total school population of the State in 1918 and 1919 was 2,386,836. There were registered in the public schools 1,672,311 pupils. The average attendance was 1,310,826. The total expenditures for public schools during that year amounted to $92,334,179, and the receipts to $133,833,419. The principal colleges include Columbia University, New York University, Manhattan College, College of the City of New York, and St. Francis Xavier College in New York City; Hobart College at Geneva; University of Buffalo at Buffalo; Cornell University at Ithaca; Union College at Schenectady; Syracuse University at Syracuse; University of Rochester at Rochester; Hamilton College at Clinton; and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute at Troy. The women's colleges include Vassar College at Poughkeepsie; Barnard College at New York City; Wells College at Aurora; Elmira College at Elmira; and Teachers' College at New York City.
Churches.—The strongest denominations in the State are the Roman Catholic, Methodist Episcopal, Regular Baptist, Prostestant Episcopal, Reformed Jewish, Congregational, Lutheran General Council, and Lutheran Synodical Conference.
Railways.—The total railway mileage of the State in 1919 was about 8,500. The roads having the longest mileage are the New York Central, the Erie, the Delaware and Hudson, and the Lehigh Valley.
Finances.—The assessed value of real and personal property in the State in 1919 was $12,758,021,934. The direct taxes levied in that year amounted to $13,523,503. The ordinary receipts amounted to $80,408,634, and the ordinary expenditures to $78,941,313. The excess receipts over the expenditures was $1,492,232.
Charities and Corrections.—Among the most important charitable and correctional institutions in the State are the Soldiers' and Sailors' Home at Bath, Boys' Reformatory at Elmira, House of Refuge at Randalls Island, Institution for Feeble-Minded at Syracuse, Craig Colony for Epileptics at Sonyea, Reformatory for Women at Bedford Hills. The total cost for the support of charitable and correctional institutions in the State is about $3,000,000 annually.
State Government.—The governor is elected for a term of two years, and receives a salary of $10,000 per annum. Legislative sessions are held annually, commencing on the first Wednesday in January, and the length of the session is unlimited. The Legislature has 51 members in the Senate and 150 in the House. There are 43 Representatives in Congress. In 1920 the governor was a Democrat, and the Legislature Republican.
History.—The first explorations of New York were made by Champlain and Henry Hudson in 1609, Champlain coming down from Canada, as far as the lake which bears his name, and Hudson, discovering New York Bay, and sailing up the Hudson river. The region surrounding the Hudson was claimed by the Dutch who called the place New Netherlands, sending out numerous colonists, who explored the country along the Hudson and Long Island Sound, and founded trading posts at Fort Orange (now Albany), and at New Amsterdam, on Manhattan Island, the latter the present city of New York. The Dutch settlements were invaded by the English from Connecticut, and by the Swedes in Delaware. The English claimed New Netherlands as part of Virginia, priorly discovered by Cabot, and Charles II., in 1664, granted a charter of all the lands lying between the Hudson and the Delaware to his brother, the Duke of York. In August of the the same year the whole country passed into the possession of the English, who gave the name of New York, to New Amsterdam, and that of Albany to Fort Orange. When the Duke of York ascended the English throne as James II., the government became an appendage to the crown, and was administered by viceroys bearing the title of governor. In 1684 Governor Dongan concluded an offensive and defensive treaty with the Indians; and from that time forward the English became their allies and fast friends. The peace of Ryswick in 1697, terminating the war between England and France, Count Frontenac, the French governor of Canada at the time, directed his force against the Five Nations. This proceeding was frustrated by the English governor of the province, who supported the Indians. The great conflict between England and France to decide the sovereignty of America broke out in 1754. In 1756, the French destroyed Oswego; and, in the following year, Fort William Henry capitulated to the French, when the English garrison was massacred by the Indian allies of the victors. In 1758 General Abercrombie was defeated at Ticonderoga, and Colonel Bradstreet took Fort Frontenac. In 1759 Niagara surrendered to General Prideaux and Sir William Johnson, and Ticonderoga and Crown Point were abandoned, leaving no French troops within the limits of the colony. In 1775 the Revolutionary War broke out, and in February, 1776, an American force took possession of New York City, which they held till the defeat at Long Island in August. In 1783 New York City was evacuated by the British. The first constitution of the State was adopted in 1777, and was successively revised in 1801, 1821, 1846, 1877. In 1788 New York adopted the Federal Constitution. The National Government was first located in New York City, which was the State capital till 1797. During the War of 1812 important events took place on the N. boundary, along Lake Ontario, the Niagara river, and on Lake Champlain. Slavery was abolished in 1817. Steamboat navigation was begun on the Hudson in 1807, and in 1825 the Erie Canal was completed from the Lakes to the Hudson. New York took an active part in the Civil War, supplying large numbers of troops to the army. Since the close of the war rapid steps of progress have been made, and the State has attained a position which gives it a fair claim to the title of Empire State.
|Copyright, L. L. Poates Eng. Co., 1921|