Port Chester, New York facts for kids
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Port Chester, New York
|Incorporated Village of Port Chester|
Downtown Port Chester
Gateway To New England
"Rich History, Great Future"
Location in Westchester County, New York
|• Total||2.40 sq mi (6.22 km2)|
|• Land||2.33 sq mi (6.03 km2)|
|• Water||0.07 sq mi (0.19 km2)|
|Elevation||43 ft (13 m)|
| • Estimate
|• Density||12,527.06/sq mi (4,836.38/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-4 (EDT)|
|GNIS feature ID||0977392|
Port Chester is a village in the U.S. state of New York and the largest part of the town of Rye in Westchester County by population. At the 2010 U.S. census, the village of Port Chester had a population of 28,967 and was the fifth-most populous village in New York State. In 2019, its population grew to a census-estimated 29,342 residents. Located in southeast Westchester, Port Chester forms part of the New York City metropolitan statistical area. Port Chester borders the state of Connecticut and the town of Greenwich to the east. Port Chester is one of only 12 villages in New York still incorporated under a charter; other villages either incorporated or reincorporated under the provisions of Village Law.
The village of Port Chester is nicknamed the "Gateway to New England" and serves as a transportation hub between New England states and New York. Its economy is primarily stimulated by small businesses, the local government, and several national chain stores, including Stop & Shop, Marshalls, Target, T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile, Verizon, Boost Mobile, Staples, and Walgreens.
The Bush-Lyon Homestead, Capitol Theater, Life Savers Building, Putnam and Mellor Engine and Hose Company Firehouse, St. Peter's Episcopal Church, and United States Post Office are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
In 1660, three settlers from Greenwidge (now Greenwich, Connecticut), Thomas Studwell, John Coe, and Peter Disbrow, arranged to buy Manursing Island and the land near the Byram River from the Mohegan Indians. The land that they bought is now Port Chester. The village was originally known as Saw Pit for the saw pits which were in use during the time. Logs were cut in holes in the ground for wood to be used for shipbuilding. The name of Sawpit was used for the first time in 1732. The village eventually outgrew this name and became Port Chester by incorporating as a village in 1868. When Port Chester was first incorporated, it was considered a major seaport.
In 1665, Sawpit was claimed by both New York and Connecticut. However, the land was given back to the New York Colony by Connecticut in 1683. This struggle over the ownership of Sawpit continued for almost 105 years. In 1788, the Legislature of New York ruled that Sawpit was a part of the town of Rye in New York.
Travel was considered dangerous in the early years of Sawpit as good roads were hard to find. The Boston Post Road, King Street, and Grace Church streets are some of the early migration paths in the Sawpit/Rye settlement. Other roads were usually dirt, which made transportation via water important.
The local waterways, the Byram River and Long Island Sound, were a key part of the growth and development of Sawpit/Port Chester. Early residents took part in boat building, farming, and shell fishing.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
At the 2019 American Community Survey, there were 29,342 people living in the village of Port Chester. The racial and ethnic makeup of Port Chester in 2019 was 30.6% non-Hispanic white, 3.0% Black or African American, 1.7% Asian, 0.3% some other race, 0.3% two or more races, and 63.9% Hispanic or Latin American of any race. Of the Hispanic and Latino population, the largest single group were Mexican Americans (14.4%) and other Hispanics and Latin Americans made up 45.0% of the demographic.
At the census of 2010, there were 28,967 people, 9,240 households, and 6,348 families residing in the village. The population density was 11,722.5 people per square mile (4,526.1/km2). There were 10,046 housing units at an average density of 4,185.8 per square mile (1,646.9/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 31.6% White, 5.3% African American, 0.2% Native American, 2.0% Asian, 0.0% Pacific Islander, 0.7% some other race, and 0.9% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 59.4% of the population.
There were 9,240 households, out of which 33.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.5% were headed by married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.3% were non-families. 24.2% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.08 and the average family size was 3.54.
In the village the population was spread out, with 22.6% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 34.2% from 25 to 44, 22.7% from 45 to 64, and 10.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34.4 years. For every 100 females, there were 110.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 111.4 males.
At the 2000 U.S. census, the median income for a household in the village was $45,381, and the median income for a family was $51,025. Males had a median income of $32,848 versus $32,461 for females. About 10.1% of families and 13.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.3% of those under age 18 and 12.6% of those age 65 or over. In 2019, the median income for a household in Port Chester was $74,920 and the mean income was $99,001.
Port Chester contains a more diverse, working-class population than many of its surrounding communities. The population of Port Chester is also a relatively religious suburban community in Downstate New York. The largest religious group in the village and area is Christianity, dominated by the Roman Catholic Church (47%). Of the Christian community, the second largest group operating in the village is the United Methodist Church (1.8%) and the third largest were Baptists (1.7%). The second largest religion in Port Chester was Judaism as of 2021 (5.2%), and Islam was the third largest single religious group (1.5%).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.5 square miles (6.5 km2), of which 2.4 square miles (6.2 km2) is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2), or 5.22%, is water.
Port Chester has a transitional climate between a humid subtropical climate (Cfa) and a humid continental climate, although in reality it shares far more features with the latter. Due to its location on the coast, temperatures don't get extremely cold or warm and precipitation is plentiful for the entire year. Winters are usually cold and powerful nor'easters are common, often dropping over 2 feet of snow on the city. Average annual snowfall is 38.6 inches, which is significantly more than New York City. Snow cover while typically not persistent for the entire winter is present much of the time, sometimes during all of January and February. During the summer, Port Chester is typically warm, however is far cooler than towns even a few miles inland.
|Climate data for Port Chester, New York|
|Average high °F (°C)||35
|Average low °F (°C)||21
Port Chester is unofficially divided into 7 distinct neighborhoods, located north and south of Westchester Avenue, Port Chester's main east-west street.
- North of Westchester Avenue:
- Tower Hill
- Colonial Ridge (Area of Puritan Drive)
- Alden Estate (Area of Quintard Drive)
- Rye Brook (Village in town of Rye)
- Washington Park
- South of Westchester Avenue:
- The Bowery (South Main Street/ Grace Church Street from the square to Midland Avenue including all the streets off of and including Purdy Avenue)
- Edgeland (Area served by Midland Avenue and upper Grace Church Street)
- Purdy's Grove
Parks and recreation
Port Chester has five main parks, together totaling nearly 50 acres (0.20 km2):
- Abendroth Park: a 10.1 acre park which includes a newly renovated section for dogs.
- Columbus Park: a 9.4 acre park located east of Ryan Avenue, west of I-95, and north of Fox Island. This park has one basketball and two volleyball courts, one large and one small playground, one picnic pavilion with picnic grills, a seasonal water spray playground, and an artificial turf soccer field. Bathroom facilities are available on-site.
- Crawford Park: owned by the town of Rye. The park is used for soccer, tee-ball, and softball by the village.
- Edgewood Park: a 3.2 acre park with one youth baseball field and small playground structure.
- Joseph Curtis Recreation Park: a 7.5 acre park located north of the Village’s downtown, not far from Lyon Park. The park is bounded by Putnam Drive on the west, Locust Avenue on the east, and Willett Avenue from the wouth. The park has a small playground structure, one adult size baseball field and batting cage, one roller skating rink, and BOCCE courts with fencing and lighting. Bathroom facilities are available on-site.
- Lyon Park: a 20.3 acre park that contains two Little League fields, a playground, and the historic Bush-Lyon Homestead. The park is bounded by Putnam Avenue, King Street, and Parkway Drive.
The Bee-Line Bus System provides bus service to Port Chester on routes 13 and 61.
Connecticut Transit Stamford Division provides bus service to Port Chester on routes 311 and 311B. The 13 was combined with the southern portion of the former 76 route on December 31, 2011.
Metro-North Railroad's Port Chester train station is located on the New Haven Line, and thus provides commuter rail service to Grand Central Terminal in New York City, and to Stamford Transportation Center and New Haven-Union Station in Connecticut.
Port Chester – Rye Brook Public Library
The Port Chester-Rye Brook Public Library is an association library funded by and for the villages of Port Chester and Rye Brook. The library was founded in 1876 by the Honorable Jared V. Peck and was dedicated at its present location in 1926 at the intersection of Haseco and Westchester Avenues. Three major renovations have taken place over the years: 1967, 2007 and 2012. The latest renovation included the creation of a teen room, a multipurpose meeting room, the addition of new furniture and carpets, and the relocation of the children's room and the implementation of an elevator. Although the renovation did not add square footage to the original three-story, 18,900 square foot building, it did provide a more open design with better use of space and light to promote parent and child reading activities. The 2012 renovations which cost $1M dollars were paid with the kind bequest of the late Douglas and Elise Lefferts. According to 2011 records; 19,900 people hold library cards, and 10,221 people attended programs including GED and community interest classes. The summer reading program typically draws 13,000 children
On June 30, 1974 an infamous nightclub fire killed 24 young men and women. The fire at Gulliver's was the deadliest dance club fire in the United States in more than a generation (the Cocoanut Grove fire in Boston, on November 28, 1942, had killed 491, and the Happy Land fire in the Bronx, on March 25, 1990, was to kill 87), and it called attention to the dangers of herding young people into windowless underground rooms without smoke alarms, sprinklers, fire-resistant walls, or limits on occupancy.
Despite the tragedy of Gulliver's, comprehensive New York State Fire Code reform would not be seen until the 1980s. Fire code enforcement continues to be a top priority in Port Chester to this day.
Port Chester is twinned with:
The Life Savers Candy Company operated a factory in Port Chester from 1920 until 1984. The factory building, which now contains apartments, is one of Port Chester's prominent landmarks. National Collector's Mint was headquartered in Port Chester, and Port Chester is the home of the chili restaurant Pat's Hubba Hubba (also known as "Hubba's").
- American Automotive Equipment (1969)
Within the village's borders, there is one public school district, the Port Chester-Rye Union Free School District. Established in 1884, it is the oldest school district in Westchester County. Two notable schools in Port Chester are Port Chester Middle and Port Chester High School.
At one time the Westchester Fairfield Hebrew Academy (now Carmel Academy) was in Port Chester. It opened in Port Chester in 1997, in rented space.
The Japanese Weekend School of New York, a hoshū jugyō kō (Japanese weekend school), holds classes at Port Chester Middle School. As of 2006, the school had about 800 students, including Japanese citizens and Japanese Americans, at locations in Westchester County and Long Island.
- PC Chris, gamertag of Chris Szygiel, professional Super Smash Bros Melee player. The handle PC Chris comes from his hometown of Port Chester, New York.
- John Abercrombie, jazz guitarist
- Jon Alpert, reporter and documentary filmmaker
- Lex Barker, film actor, famous for playing Tarzan
- Herman Barron (1909–1978), professional golfer
- Keter Betts, jazz double bass player
- Nick Bianco, Amateur motocross racer
- Edson Buddle, Major League Soccer player
- Jackie Carter, children's book editor and author
- William W. Cook, legal scholar and major benefactor of the University of Michigan Law School
- Paul Costa, professional football player
- Luigi Del Bianco, chief carver of Mount Rushmore
- Elliot del Borgo, composer
- Arnold Diaz, journalist for Fox 5 News
- Aaron Sabato, 2020 MLB First Round Pick by the Minnesota Twins
- Meaghan Francella, LPGA player
- George Gallo, screenwriter and filmmaker
- Arnold Gamson, conductor
- Doug Grean, musician and producer
- Adam Haslett, writer and winner of the PEN/Malamud Award
- Rob Ianello, University of Akron football coach
- E.L. Konigsburg, author, illustrator, Newbery Award winner
- Ferdinand Kramer, architect of Greyrock Park and Alden Estates 1939/1940 to 1945
- Joe Langworth, Broadway performer, choreographer and director
- Frank E. "Lank" Leonard, cartoonist and creator of the Mickey Finn comic strip
- Val Lewton, writer and producer
- Barry Lopez, writer, National Book Award winner
- Robert W. McKnight, Florida state legislator, businessman, and writer
- Terrence McNally, Playwright, librettist, and screenwriter
- Colin Moran, professional baseball player
- Andy Newmark, rock and funk drummer
- Leslie R. Nicholas, businessman and Pacific War veteran
- Richard Ogilvie, Governor of Illinois 1968-1972
- Ruth Roberts, songwriter
- Saul Rosen, computer scientist
- Andre Roy, NHL player
- Rachael Sage, singer-songwriter
- Carl Schmehl, director and producer
- Ed Sullivan, entertainer
- Art Tomassetti, record-setting test pilot
- David Tutera, celebrity wedding planner
- Anthony Vincent, YouTuber and musician
- Peter J. Vita, holder of the world record for the longest working career as a barber
In Spanish: Port Chester para niños
Port Chester, New York Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.