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Danby, New York
Danby, New York is located in New York
Danby, New York
Danby, New York
Location in New York
Country United States
State New York
County Tompkins
 • Total 53.77 sq mi (139.28 km2)
 • Land 53.55 sq mi (138.70 km2)
 • Water 0.22 sq mi (0.58 km2)
1,532 ft (467 m)
 • Total 3,329
 • Estimate 
 • Density 66.01/sq mi (25.49/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
FIPS code 36-19620
GNIS feature ID 0978882

Danby is a town in Tompkins County, New York, United States. The population was 3,329 at the 2010 census. The town is in the southern part of the county and is south of the city of Ithaca.


Danby was first settled around 1797.

Danby was formed in 1811 from the Town of Spencer (now in Tioga County). In 1839, a part of the Town of Caroline was added to Danby, and part of Danby was lost to the Town of Dryden in 1856.

Among Danby's most famous natives was Martin L. Smith, a Confederate general in the American Civil War.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 53.8 square miles (139 km2), of which, 53.6 square miles (139 km2) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) of it (0.33%) is water.

The south town line is the border of Tioga County.

New York State Route 96B (Danby Road) is a north-south highway in the town.

Cayuga Inlet flows northward on the west side of Danby to Cayuga Lake, and Danby Creek flows eastward alongside NY-96B.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1820 2,001
1830 2,481 24.0%
1840 2,570 3.6%
1850 2,411 −6.2%
1860 2,261 −6.2%
1870 2,126 −6.0%
1880 2,035 −4.3%
1890 1,707 −16.1%
1900 1,449 −15.1%
1910 1,235 −14.8%
1920 1,143 −7.4%
1930 1,407 23.1%
1940 1,253 −10.9%
1950 1,555 24.1%
1960 2,059 32.4%
1970 2,141 4.0%
1980 2,449 14.4%
1990 2,858 16.7%
2000 3,007 5.2%
2010 3,329 10.7%
2016 (est.) 3,535 6.2%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2010, there were 3,007 people, 1,187 households, and 830 families residing in the town. There were 1,264 housing units at an average density of 23.6 per square mile (9.1/km2). The racial makeup of the town as 93.65% White, 2.69% African American, 0.17% Native American, 1.06% Asian, 0.43% from other races, and 2.00% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.70% of the population.

There were 1,187 households, out of which 33.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.6% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.0% were non-families. 21.2% of all households were made up of individuals, and 5.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 2.94.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 24.5% under the age of 18, 6.7% from 18 to 24, 30.0% from 25 to 44, 28.9% from 45 to 64, and 9.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 103.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.2 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $50,348, and the median income for a family was $52,303. Males had a median income of $34,181 versus $30,136 for females. The per capita income for the town was $23,078. About 3.9% of families and 5.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.0% of those under age 18 and 2.8% of those age 65 or over.

Communities and locations in Danby

  • Buttermilk Falls State Park – A part of the state park is located in the town, southwest of Danby village.
  • Caroline Depot – A hamlet at the east town line.
  • Danby (formerly "Beers Settlement") – The hamlet of Danby is located on NY-96B.
  • Point O' Rocks – A location by the south town line.
  • South Danby – A hamlet in the southeast part of the town.
  • West Danby – A hamlet in the southwest part of the town by the Cayuga Inlet. It was first settled around 1814.
  • White Hawk – An ecovillage that is to the south of Ithaca, NY.


New York State Route 96B (Danby Road) runs north-south through the central portion of the town, generally along the route of the 1811 Ithaca-Owego Turnpike.

New York State Routes 34/96 runs north-south through the western portion of the town, through the valley of the Cayuga Inlet.

A Norfolk Southern Railway branch line between Sayre, PA and Ludlowville, NY runs through the western portion of the town, through the valley of the Cayuga Inlet. This railroad was built in 1871 as the Ithaca & Athens Railroad and later become part of the Lehigh Valley Railroad. There was a depot in West Danby, on the north side of Station Road, east of the tracks. Passenger service to West Danby ended in the 1940s and passenger service on this line ended in 1961.

A former branch line of the Delaware, Lackawanna, and Western Railroad ran across the far northeastern part of the town, along the border with the Town of Caroline. This was originally built in 1834 as the Ithaca and Owego Railroad, one of the first in the United States. The line originally included two inclined planes to descend into Ithaca. These were rebuilt as a switchback railroad and leased to the DL&W in 1855. The line was abandoned in 1956.

The Finger Lakes Trail crosses the town east-west through the Danby State Forest.

Notable people

  • Dr. Samuel Parker (1779-1866). Congregational minister from Ashfield, Massachusetts who was ordained at the Danby Federated Church in 1812 and was the author of Parker's Exploring Tour beyond the Rocky Mountains, an account of his 1835 trip to the Pacific Northwest.
  • Prince and Lement Duplex. African-American Revolutionary War veteran and his wife who arrived in Danby from Connecticut in 1811.
  • William Grant Egbert (1867-1928). Noted violinist born in Danby. Founder of the Ithaca Conservatory of Music in 1892, which would grow into Ithaca College.
  • Wilson Greatbatch (1919-2011). Engineer and inventor from Buffalo who lived in Danby during his education at Cornell University in the late 1940s.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Danby (Nueva York) para niños

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