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Ossining (town), New York facts for kids

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Ossining, New York
First Baptist Church of Ossining
The Volunteer-Spirited Town
Location of Ossining (town), New York
Location of Ossining (town), New York
Country United States
State New York
County Westchester
 • Type Manager-Council
 • Total 15.6 sq mi (40.4 km2)
 • Land 11.7 sq mi (30.3 km2)
 • Water 3.9 sq mi (10.1 km2)
 • Total 37,674
 • Density 3,123.0/sq mi (1,205.6/km2)
 • Demonym
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 914
FIPS code 36-55530
GNIS feature ID 0959520

Ossining is a town located along the Hudson River in Westchester County, New York, United States. The population was 37,674 in the 2010 census. It contains two villages, the Village of Ossining and part of Briarcliff Manor, the rest of which is located in the Town of Mount Pleasant. Ossining is the location of Sing Sing maximum-security prison.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 15.6 square miles (40.4 km²), of which 11.7 square miles (30.3 km²) is land and 3.9 square miles (10.1 km²) (25.06%) is water.

Ossining is bounded on the west by the Hudson River and on the north by the Croton River.


See also: Downtown Ossining Historic District#History and History of Briarcliff Manor

Frederick Philipse bought the area which presently constitutes the Town of Ossining from the Sint Sinck Indians in 1685. The Sint Sinck were members of the Matinecock (Algonquin) tribe, who originally resided in the area of Cow Neck Peninsula on Long Island, New York. His Manor extended from Spuyten Duyvil Creek on the border between present day Manhattan and the Bronx to the Croton River. The last Lord of the Manor, Frederick Philipse III, was a Loyalist in the American Revolutionary War who fled to England. The State of New York confiscated the manor in 1779.

In 1813, the village of Sing Sing was incorporated. Sing Prison, now known as Sing Sing Correctional Facility, which is a maximum-security prison, opened in 1826. The prison was opened to replace the Newgate Prison that was located in New York City. In 1845, the New York State Legislature created a new town out of the northern part of what had been the Town of Mount Pleasant. A local Indian authority suggested the town be named Ossinsing, a different form of the name Sing Sing. One year later the last "s" was removed for ease in pronunciation. In 1881, the town considered changing its name to "Garfield Plains" to honor the recently assassinated President of the United States, James Garfield, but dropped the idea after the much larger city of White Plains in southern Westchester County objected. In 1901, to prevent confusion of goods made in the village with Sing Sing prison-made items, local officials had the village name changed to Ossining as well.

In 1902 an area east of the village of Ossining, then known as Whitson's Crossing, was incorporated as the village of Briarcliff Manor.

The Jug Tavern and Scarborough Historic District are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 4,939
1860 6,766 37.0%
1870 7,798 15.3%
1880 8,760 12.3%
1890 10,058 14.8%
1900 10,895 8.3%
1910 12,828 17.7%
1920 12,358 −3.7%
1930 17,724 43.4%
1940 18,911 6.7%
1950 20,137 6.5%
1960 26,199 30.1%
1970 32,397 23.7%
1980 30,680 −5.3%
1990 34,124 11.2%
2000 36,534 7.1%
2010 37,674 3.1%
Est. 2014 38,214 1.4%
U.S. Decennial Census

In the census of 2000, there were 36,534 people, 12,355 households, and 8,537 families residing in the town. The population density was 3,123.0 people per square mile (1,205.6/km²). There were 12,733 housing units at an average density of 1,088.4 per square mile (420.2/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 70.26% White, 14.28% Black or African American, 0.35% Native American, 4.54% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 7.34% from other races, and 3.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 19.93% of the population.

There were 12,355 households out of which 33.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.4% were married couples living together, 10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.9% were non-families. Of all households 25.5% were made up of individuals and 9.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.64 and the average family size was 3.14.

In the town, the population was spread out with 21.8% under the age of 18, 7.8% from 18 to 24, 34.5% from 25 to 44, 22.9% from 45 to 64, and 13.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 106.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 105.4 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $65,485, and the median income for a family was $81,943 (these figures had risen to $77,753 and $98,593 respectively as of a 2007 estimate). Males had a median income of $51,286 versus $40,618 for females. The per capita income for the town was $34,195. About 5.0% of families and 8.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.3% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.

Ossining is ranked the #2 best community to live in Westchester by Westchester Magazine, based on criteria such as Diversity, Housing Costs, Parks & Recreation, Property Tax, Proximity to NYC, Safety, Schools, Proximity to Water, Nightlife, Shopping, and Downtown.


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