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Pawling (town), New York facts for kids

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Harlem Valley view from Appalachian Trail, Pawling, NY.jpg
View of Harlem Valley from Appalachian Trail in Pawling
Pawling seal.png
Name origin: From Catherine Pauling, wife of Albert Pauling, and eldest daughter of colonial landowner Henry Beekman
Country United States
State New York
Region Hudson Valley
County Dutchess
Landmark The Great Swamp
River Swamp River
Center Village of Pawling
 - elevation 480 ft (146 m)
 - coordinates 41°34′N 73°36′W / 41.567°N 73.600°W / 41.567; -73.600
Highest point Observatory Hill (Pawling)
 - elevation 1,332 ft (406 m)
 - coordinates 41°35′16″N 73°32′27″W / 41.58778°N 73.54083°W / 41.58778; -73.54083
Lowest point East Branch Croton River at Putnam County line
 - elevation 420 ft (128 m)
 - coordinates 41°31′24″N 73°36′12″W / 41.52333°N 73.60333°W / 41.52333; -73.60333
Area 45 sq mi (117 km²)
 - land 44.2 sq mi (114 km²)
 - water 0.8 sq mi (2 km²)
Population 8,463 (2010)
Density 170.2 /sq mi (66 /km²)
Founded 1788
 - location Town Hall, 160 Charles Colman Blvd.
 - elevation 450 ft (137 m)
 - coordinates 41°34′08″N 73°35′59″W / 41.56889°N 73.59972°W / 41.56889; -73.59972
Town Supervisor David P. Kelly (R)
Timezone EST (UTC-5)
 - summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 12564
Area code 845
Exchange 855

Pawling is a town in Dutchess County, New York, United States. The population was 8,463 at the 2010 census. The town is named after Catherine Pauling, the daughter of Henry Beekman, who held the second largest land patent in the county. A misprint caused the U to change to a W and the name stuck.

The Town of Pawling is in the southeast part of the county. The town has a village of Pawling.


A part of the town was involved in a boundary problem involving New York and Connecticut. A section of the town, located in the "Oblong,"(This curious name was given to the disputed oblong strip of land, two miles in width forming part of the Eastern boundary of the now Dutchess and Putnam Counties.) It was settled by Nathan Birdsall and his wife Jane Langdon, they were the first pioneer settlers of Quaker Hill, Dutchess, NY. He was a native of Long Island and was born about 1700 of Quaker parents. He was one of the surveyors of the area and picked his home site during the survey. Nathan purchased his land from the Great Nine Partners Patent, and prior to moving his family there, he erected a log house and barn, probably around 1720. The next settler was Benjamin Ferris, a Quaker preacher. It was not until 1731, when the one-hundred-year-old dispute as to the boundary between the English in New England and the Dutch in New York was settled, that emigration started in any volume, a number of "Friends" coming from Harrisons Purchase, now a part of Rye, in Westchester County, New York. Quaker Meeting House is still standing today, and open for visitors. George Washington established his headquarters at the John Kane House in the town (now the village) for two months in 1778. The town was founded in 1788, but part of the town was used to form the neighboring Town of Dover in 1807.

The oldest public golf course in the United States, the Dutcher Golf Course, also is in Pawling, and still in use. The Pawling Corporation is headquartered there.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 45.0 square miles (117 km2), of which 44.2 square miles (114 km2) is land and 0.8 square miles (2.1 km2) (1.80%) is water.

The eastern and western section of the towns are high and hilly, with the Great Swamp and Harlem Valley in the middle, where the village of Pawling is located. The highest elevation in town is Observatory Hill, at 1,332 feet (406 m) above sea level; the lowest is 420 feet (130 m), in the Great Swamp along the south boundary of town.

Most of the population of Pawling is concentrated in the valley, traversed by NY 22 (joined by NY 55 south of the village) and Metro-North Railroad's Harlem Line. There are two train stations in town, the Pawling station in the village and the Appalachian Trail station, allowing passengers to hike that trail up into the Pawling Nature Reserve along Hammersby Ridge in the northern section of town.

The south town line is the border of Putnam County, New York, and the east town line is the border of Connecticut. To the west lies the town of Beekman, with Dover to the north.

Communities, locations and notable places in the Town of Pawling

  • Baker Corner – A hamlet east of Hurd Corners.
  • Holmes – A hamlet in the southwest part of the town.
  • Hurd Corners – A hamlet north of Pawling village.
  • Quaker Hill – A hamlet near the east town line, northeast of Pawling village.
  • Pawling – The Village of Pawling.
  • West Pawling – A hamlet on Route 55, northwest of Pawling village.
  • Whaley Lake – A lake by the west town line.
  • Woodinville – A hamlet west of Pawling village.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1820 1,804
1830 1,705 −5.5%
1840 1,571 −7.9%
1850 1,720 9.5%
1860 1,743 1.3%
1870 1,760 1.0%
1880 2,006 14.0%
1890 1,949 −2.8%
1900 1,921 −1.4%
1910 1,927 0.3%
1920 1,955 1.5%
1930 2,391 22.3%
1940 2,752 15.1%
1950 2,891 5.1%
1960 3,938 36.2%
1970 4,764 21.0%
1980 5,795 21.6%
1990 5,947 2.6%
2000 7,521 26.5%
2010 8,463 12.5%
Est. 2014 8,374 −1.1%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2000, there were 7,521 people, 2,823 households, and 1,987 families living in the town. The population density was 170.2 people per square mile (65.7/km²). There were 3,101 housing units at an average density of 70.2 per square mile (27.1/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 94.43% White, 1.46% Black or African American, 0.17% Native American, 1.28% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 1.30% from other races, and 1.32% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.85% of the population.

There were 2,823 households out of which 33.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.6% were married couples living together, 7.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.6% were non-families. 24.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.62 and the average family size was 3.16.

In the town, the population was spread out with 25.3% under the age of 18, 5.3% from 18 to 24, 29.3% from 25 to 44, 24.9% from 45 to 64, and 15.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 95.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.4 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $61,380 and the median income for a family was $70,056. Males had a median income of $47,143 versus $35,063 for females. The per capita income for the town was $30,043. About 1.7% of families and 3.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.2% of those under age 18 and 4.1% of those age 65 or over.

Notable places

  • Akin Free Library, historic eclectic late Victorian stone building - home to the Gunnison Museum of Natural History and Historical Society of Quaker Hill and Pawling.
  • Daryl's House, concert venue and restaurant located in the former home of the famous Towne Crier Cafe.
  • John Kane House, used by George Washington as his headquarters when the Continental Army was garrisoned on Purgatory Hill.
  • Oblong Friends Meeting House, a late 18th-century Friends Meeting House of the Religious Society of Friends in the hamlet of Quaker Hill.
  • Peale History Center and Library, commemorating the life and teachings of Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, the creator of "The Power of Positive Thinking" and founder of Guideposts.
  • Trinity-Pawling School, an all-boys boarding school.
  • Whaley Lake, the only lake in Dutchess county to allow motorized boats.
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