Harrison, New York facts for kids
Location of Harrison, New York
|Town||March 7, 1788|
|Named for||John Harrison|
|• Total||17.4 sq mi (45.0 km2)|
|• Land||16.8 sq mi (43.6 km2)|
|• Water||0.6 sq mi (1.5 km2)|
|Elevation||69 ft (21 m)|
|• Density||1,579/sq mi (610.5/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||Eastern (EDT) (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||0977345|
Harrison is a village and town located in Westchester County, New York, approximately 22 miles (35 km) northeast of Manhattan. The population was 27,472 at the 2010 census. Harrison was ranked sixth in the list of the top 10 places to live in New York State for 2014 according to the national online real estate brokerage Movoto.
According to Forbes, Harrison is the 326th wealthiest place in the United States with a median sale price of $1,230,625, slightly below that of Chappaqua. Fundera ranked Harrison the best place in New York for small business.
Harrison was established in 1696 by a patent granted by the British government to John Harrison and three others, who had a year earlier bargained with local Native Americans to purchase an area of land above Westchester Path (an old trail that led from Manhattan to Port Chester) and below Rye Lake. Local custom holds that Harrison was given 24 hours to ride his horse around the area he could claim, and the horse couldn't swim or didn't want to get its feet wet, but this is folklore. In fact, the land below Westchester Path and along Long Island Sound had already been purchased and partly developed by the settlers of Rye, NY.
The area that became Harrison had also been sold in 1661 or 1662, and again in 1666, to Peter Disbrow, John Budd, and other investors or early residents of Rye. Disbrow and Budd evidently lost their paperwork and the land was ultimately granted to Harrison and his co-investors in 1696. So upset were the people or Rye that they seceded to the Colony of Connecticut until 1700, when the King of England ordered Rye to rejoin the Colony of New York.
The first permanent residents of Harrison's Purchase, as it was called, arrived in about 1725, and many early settlers were Quakers, who set up a Friend's Meeting House at a settlement located in the part of Harrison now called Purchase. Harrison's Purchase was administered jointly by the settlers of Rye until it was incorporated as a town on March 7, 1788, by an act of the New York State legislature.
Merritt's Hill in West Harrison was the site of the Battle of White Plains during the Revolutionary War. Regiment 182 of the Continental Army, of the 367 regiments there, was the Harrison Regiment, composed solely of people from Harrison.
During the 1830s, David Haviland settled in Harrison where he produced Haviland China which he sold in his store in New York City before returning to his native France. Today there exists a Haviland Street in a neighborhood of Harrison known as "South Downtown", whose only street marker looks rather quite older than the rest in the town, composed of wrought iron in scrolled shapes.
In 1867 Benjamin Holladay purchased the land that is now Manhattanville College in Purchase. On the property is a Norman-style Roman Catholic chapel built for his wife. There is also Reid Castle, once called the Ophir House, before being renamed for a later purchaser. The castle hosted the King and Queen of Siam in the early 1930s.
What is now the Metro-North Railroad's New Haven Line, running from Manhattan, New York City, to Greenwich, Connecticut, first came through Harrison in 1848, though the first station was not built until 1870. Before that time, Harrisonites had to flag down the train to get a ride. Harrison remained generally free of factories through the Industrial Revolution, while large factory districts grew in the neighboring towns of White Plains, Port Chester and Mamaroneck.
In 1929, the Hutchinson River Parkway was extended to Harrison.
In 1967, 200 residents stated support for a plan to incorporate Purchase, a community in Harrison, so that corporations could not build in the community. In response, officials from the Town of Harrison put forward plans to try to become a city to try to stop Purchase from seceding from Harrison. The resolution was for the Town became a hybrid "Town / Village," which it remains today.
John A. Passidomo (1921–2005) was first elected Mayor in 1965 by only 67 votes. Re-elected eight times, he served until 1983 when he resigned to become Commissioner of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles. In his two and a half years at that job, he helped pass one of the nation's first seat-belt laws despite the law's unpopularity.
Harrison's "Platinum Mile", a string of corporate office parks along I-287 in the Purchase section of Harrison, developed under Passidomo. The mayor played an instrumental role in attracting large corporations such as PepsiCo, MasterCard and Texaco.
In the early 1970s, under Passidomo's supervision, a group in the Purchase section of town, concerned about the town's overdevelopment, attempted to incorporate as a village and thereby separate from the town of Harrison. Creatively, to avoid being served papers that would have begun the legal proceedings for Purchase to incorporate as a village, Passidomo entered his office through the fire escape. He then immediately made sure that the town Harrison became a village but remained as a town to end to the possibility of Purchase's secession, since a village cannot legally be formed in another village.
The list of supervisors/mayors begins at 1965; however, there were mayors before that.
- John Passidomo 1965–1983
- Pat V. Angarano 1983-1990
- Charles Balancia 1990–1994
- Philip A. Marraccini (R) 1994–1998
- Ronald Bianchi (D) 1998–2002
- Stephen Malfitano (R) 2002–2008
- Joan Walsh (D) 2008–2011
- Ronald Belmont (R) 2012-
Harrison is a town and village in Westchester County, New York, approximately 22 miles (35 km) northeast of Manhattan, New York City. According to the United States Census Bureau, the town (and coterminous village) has a total area of 17.4 square miles (45 km2), of which 16.8 square miles (44 km2) is land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km2), or 3.22%, is water. The population was 27,472 at the 2010 census.
Harrison is bordered by North Castle, White Plains, Rye town, Rye city, Mamaroneck, and Scarsdale. The New England Thruway (I-95) runs through the town (without any interchanges), as well as the Cross Westchester Expressway and the Hutchinson River Parkway. I-684 passes through Harrison and ends at the Cross Westchester Expressway and the Hutchinson Parkway.
|Climate data for Harrison, New York|
|Average high °F (°C)||35
|Average low °F (°C)||21
|Precipitation inches (mm)||3.78
|Source: The Weather Channel|
At the 2000 census, there were 24,154 people, 8,394 households and 6,186 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,435.2 per square mile (554.1/km2). There were 8,680 housing units at an average density of 515.8 per square mile (199.1/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 89.78% White, 1.43% Black or African American, 0.09% Native American, 5.44% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 1.59% from other races, and 1.67% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.70% of the population.
Harrison is also known for its large Italian American population.
There were 8,394 households of which 35.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.4% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.3% were non-families. 22.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.72 and the average family size was 3.20.
24.5% of residents were under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 29.4% from 25 to 44, 21.9% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 89.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.2 males.
According to a 2009 estimate, the median household income was $104,640, and the median family income was $130,224. The per capita income for the village was $63,742. About 4.2% of families and 5.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.3% of those under age 18 and 7.8% of those age 65 or over.
Areas and neighborhoods
The boundaries of the town of Harrison are the approximate shape of a figure-eight. The southern half is known as simply Harrison, or downtown, while the hamlet of Purchase is located in the northern portion of the town. "West Harrison" is a neighborhood south of Purchase, further west, bounded by Silver Lake, the Brae Burn Golf Course, and I-287. The "downtown" southern half of Harrison is divided into four general areas: The Brentwood, Sunnyridge, Sterling Ridge/The Trails, and South Downtown.
West Harrison is an isolated community, lodged between a tall hill bordered by a lake, Interstate 287, a tall relatively steep hill, and a cliff at the northern edge. Because of this, there is a general lack of street entrances. There is really only one road into it, although there are a few other "back" ways into it. The road is called Lake Street, flanked on one side by Silver Lake Park, bordering the lake, and by a small business district on the other side of the street. West Harrison contains the Passidomo Veterans Memorial Park and Pool and the Leo Mintzer Center. West Harrison also contains the site of the Battle of White Plains from the Revolutionary War.
Purchase is a more secluded area of Harrison, with winding roads and deep woods. The houses are larger, in often cases whole swaths of land developed in the late twentieth century, and early 2000s, comparably younger in age to the rest of the town.
Downtown is split into the four sections mentioned above, and is flanked by Interstate 95, the Hutchinson River Parkway, and the Metro-North Railroad. The manmade lines create isolation to areas, with few areas to cross each. Harrison's only middle school, Louis M. Klein Middle School, and only High School, Harrison High School, are located in the "downtown" area. The four areas of downtown, as separated by the boundaries of Interstate 95 and the railroad tracks as well as separated by wealth gaps, are very diverse. Despite its name, "Downtown" is not in any sense a business district, it is much rather a residential enclave, featuring houses of every wealth level.
Harrison is traversed by several of Westchester County's major arteries.
- I-287 traverses the center of the town, between Purchase and Downtown. West Harrison is served by Exit 8 (NY 127). Downtown and Purchase are served by Exits 9 (Hutchinson River Parkway) and 10 (NY 120/NY 120A).
- I-95 (New England Thruway) crosses downtown, although no interchanges are located within Harrison.
- I-684 travels north from Interstate 287, and forms a border between West Harrison and Purchase. Harrison is served by exit 2 (Westchester County Airport), which is located in North Castle. Additionally, Harrison is served by the Manhattanville Road exit off the connector road between I-684 and the Hutchinson River Parkway.
- Hutchinson River Parkway runs along the western edge of Downtown, forming a border between Harrison and White Plains. North of Interstate 287, the parkway turns eastward towards Rye Brook and Greenwich, Connecticut. Downtown is served by exits 23 (Mamaroneck Avenue), and 25 (NY 127/North Street). Purchase is served by exits 27 (NY 120), and 28 (Lincoln Avenue).
Harrison is served by several other significant roads.
- NY 120 enters Harrison from the east near Rye's central business district. The route parallels the western edge of I-287 for several blocks, to Westchester Avenue, where NY 120 meets the southern end of NY 120A, an alternate route through Rye Brook. NY 120 follows Westchester Avenue, which forms collector/distributor roads running along I-287. About a half-mile west, NY 120 turns north, and passes through Purchase, where it intersects the Hutchinson River Parkway at exit 27. Continuing north, the route runs along the eastern edge of the campus of Manhattanville College, and passes a short distance west of the State University of New York at Purchase. The route continues north towards Westchester County Airport, and North Castle, as well as an intersection with I-684 at exit 2.
- NY 120A terminates just inside of Harrison along Westchester Avenue.
- NY 127 runs across downtown as Harrison Avenue and North Street. The route enters from Mamaroneck as Harrison Avenue, a short distance from its terminus at US 1. Some distance north, the route intersects Halstead Avenue, Downtown's main business strip. The route also intersects the New Haven Line, and has an intersection with the Hutchinson River Parkway on the White Plains/Harrison line (exit 25).
- See also: List of bus routes in Westchester County
Harrison is served by several Bee-Line Bus routes.
Harrison is served by the New Haven Line of the Metro-North Railroad at the Harrison station, near the intersection of NY 127/Harrison Avenue and Halstead Avenue downtown.
Harrison is served by Westchester County Airport, which is partially located in Purchase.
Points of interest
Places of worship
Places of worship in Harrison include:
- St. Gregory the Great Church in Harrison
- St. Anthony of Padua Church in West Harrison
- Greek Orthodox Church of Our Savior
- All Saints Church in Harrison
- Harrison Presbyterian Church in Harrison
- Young Israel of Harrison
- Harrison Jewish Community Center
There are several cemeteries in the downtown, including many small family plots dating back to the 17th century and before. Greenwood Union Cemetery is a cemetery shared by the city of Rye. There is also the Small Roman Catholic Cemetery dating back to when Harrison was first discovered in the 17th century. It is located right on the border of Rye and Harrison. This was a domain for Indian burials.
The Westchester Country Club, Willow Ridge Country Club, and Apawamis Golf Club are all located in Harrison. All three of them are next to each other in the southern half ("downtown") portion of the town. A portion of Apawamis, including its entrance is located in Rye, New York.
Harrison contains two post offices; one is located in the downtown section on Halstead Avenue, and the other is in Purchase, facing Purchase Street, near the intersection with Anderson Hill Road.
The Hadden-Margolis House, Stony Hill Cemetery, and United States Post Office are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
In West Harrison
Michelangelo's Pizza Pasta & Things
Silver Lake Pizza
In Downtown Harrison
Sophia's Pizza & Restaurant
Harrisons Pizza & Pasta
NY Pizza Station
Council Members For 2016
Town Clerk: Jackie Greer
Deputy Town Clerk: Bryan Cipolla
Senior Clerk: Diana Minishi
Images for kids
1932 memorial to Amelia Earhart, located in Harrison.
Harrison, New York Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.