Troy, New York: Wikis

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Troy
City
The Troy waterfront and Hudson River, 2009
City seal
Official name: City of Troy
Name origin: From classical Troy
Motto: Ilium fuit, Troja est
Nickname: The Collar City
Country United States
State New York
Region Capital District
County Rensselaer
Landmark Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
River Hudson
Center Monument Square
 - elevation 30 ft (9 m)
 - coordinates 42°43′53″N 73°41′30″W / 42.73139°N 73.69167°W / 42.73139; -73.69167
Highest point unnamed hill in east of city
 - elevation 500 ft (152 m)
 - coordinates 42°44′02″N 73°39′42″W / 42.73389°N 73.66167°W / 42.73389; -73.66167
Lowest point sea level
 - elevation ft (0 m)
Area 11 sq mi (28 km2)
 - land 10.4 sq mi (27 km2)
 - water 0.6 sq mi (2 km2)
Population 48,649 (2003 est.)
Density 4,721.8 /sq mi (1,823 /km2)
Settled 1787
 - Incorporation as village 1793
 - As city 1816
Government Mayor-council
 - location City Hall
 - coordinates 42°43′54″N 73°41′33″W / 42.73167°N 73.6925°W / 42.73167; -73.6925
Mayor Harry Tutunjian (R)
Timezone EST (UTC-5)
 - summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP Code 12179-12182
Area code 518
FIPS code 36-75484
GNIS feature ID 0967902
Location of Troy within Rensselaer County
Location of Troy within the state of New York
Wikimedia Commons: Troy, New York
Statistics: Troy, New York at city-data.com
Website: www.troyny.gov

Troy is a city in New York, U.S., and the county seat of Rensselaer County. At the 2000 census, the population was 49,170. Troy's motto is Ilium fuit, Troja est, which means "Ilium was, Troy is".[1]

Troy is located on the western edge of Rensselaer County and on the eastern bank of the Hudson River. Troy has close ties with the nearby cities of Albany and Schenectady, forming a region popularly called the Capital District. The city is one of the three major centers for the Albany-Schenectady-Troy Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), the metro area has a population of 850,957. Troy is home to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Russell Sage College, Hudson Valley Community College and the Emma Willard School, and was the hometown of Uncle Sam.

Contents

History

The site of the city was a part of the Rensselaerswyck, a patroonship created by Kiliaen van Rensselaer. Dirck Van der Heyden was one of the first settlers. In 1707, he purchased a farm of 65 acres (26 ha) which in 1787 was laid out as a village.

A local legend that a Dutch girl had been kidnapped by an Indian male who did not want her to marry someone else gained some credence when two skeletons were found in a cave under Poestenkill Falls in the 1950s. One skeleton was female and Caucasian with an iron ring. The other was Native-American and male.

The name Troy (after the legendary city of Troy, made famous in Homer's Iliad) was adopted in 1789, and the region was formed into the Town of Troy in 1791 from part of the Manor of Rensselaerswyck. The township included the current city and the town of Brunswick. Troy became a village in 1801 and was chartered as a city in 1816. In 1900, the city of Lansingburgh was merged into Troy.

In the post-Revolutionary War years, as central New York was first settled, there was a strong trend to classical names, and Troy's naming fits the same pattern as the New York cities of Syracuse, Rome, Utica, Ithaca, or the towns of Sempronius, Manlius, or dozens of other classically named towns to the west of Troy.

Northern and Western New York was a theater of the War of 1812, and militia and regular army forces were led by Stephen Van Rensselaer of Troy. Quartermaster supplies were shipped through Troy. A local butcher and meat-packer named Samuel Wilson supplied the military, and, according to an unprovable legend, barrels stamped "U.S." were jokingly taken by the troops to stand for "Uncle Sam" meaning Wilson. Troy has since claimed to be the historical home of Uncle Sam.

Through much of the 19th and into the early 20th century, Troy was not only one of the most prosperous cities in New York State, but one of the most prosperous cities in the entire country. Prior to its rise as an industrial center, Troy was the transshipment point for meat and vegetables from Vermont which were sent by the Hudson River to New York City. The Federal Dam at Troy is the head of the tides in the Hudson River and Hudson River sloops and steamboats plied the river on a regular basis. This trade was vastly increased after the construction of the Erie Canal, with its eastern terminus directly across the Hudson from Troy at Cohoes in 1825.

Troy's one-time great wealth was produced in the steel industry, with the first American Bessemer converter erected on the Wyantskill, a stream with a falls in a small valley at the south end of the city.[2] The industry first used charcoal and iron ore from the Adirondacks. Later on, ore and coal from the Midwest was shipped on the Erie Canal to Troy, and there processed before being sent on down the Hudson to New York City. The iron and steel was also used by the extensive federal arsenal across the Hudson at Watervliet, New York, then called West Troy. After the American Civil War, the steel production industry moved west to be closer to raw materials. The presence of iron and steel also made it possible for Troy to be an early site in the development of iron storefronts and steel structural supports in architecture, and there are some significant early examples still in the city.

The initial emphasis on heavier industry later spawned a wide variety of highly engineered mechanical and scientific equipment. Troy was the home of W. & L. E. Gurley, Co., makers of precision instruments. Gurley's theodolites were used to survey much of the American West after the Civil War and were highly regarded until laser and digital technology eclipsed the telescope and compass technology in the 1970s. Bells manufactured by Troy's Meneely Bell Company ring all over the world. And Troy was also home to a manufacturer of racing shells that used impregnated paper in a process that presaged the later use of fiberglass, Kevlar and carbon fiber composites.

This scientific and technical proficiency was supported by the presence of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, or RPI, one of the highest-ranked engineering schools in the country.[3] RPI was originally sponsored by Stephen Van Rensselaer, one of the most prominent members of that family. RPI was founded in 1824, and eventually absorbed the campus of the short-lived, liberal arts based Troy University, which closed in 1862 during the Civil War. Rensselaer founded RPI for the "application of science to the common purposes of life", and it is the oldest technological university in the English-speaking world.[4] The institute is known for its success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace.[5]

On December 23, 1823, The Troy Sentinel was the first publisher of the world-famous Christmas poem "A Visit from St. Nicholas" (also known as "The Night Before Christmas" or "Twas the Night Before Christmas"). The poem was published anonymously. Its author has long been believed to have been Clement Clarke Moore, but its author is now regarded by a few to have been Henry Livingston, Jr.

Troy was an early home of professional baseball, and was the host of two major league teams. The first team to call Troy home was the Troy Haymakers, a National Association team in 1871 and 1872. One of their major players was Williams H. "Bill" Craver, a noted catcher and Civil War veteran, who also managed the team. Their last manager was Jimmy Wood, reckoned the first Canadian in professional baseball. The Troy Haymakers folded, and Troy had no team for seven seasons. Then, for four seasons, 1879 to 1882, Troy was home to the National League Troy Trojans. The Trojans were not competitive in the league, but they did have the biggest hitter in professional baseball, Dan Brouthers.[1] For the 1883 season, the Trojans were moved to New York City where they became the New York Gothams, better know later as the Giants. The Gothams had the same ownership as the New York Metropolitans of the rival American Association. As a result classic Met players became Giants, including Hall of Fame Pitcher Tim Keefe. Troy was also the birthplace of the famous player Michael Joseph "King" Kelly.

Troy has been nearly destroyed by fire three times. The Great Troy fire of 1862 burnt the W. & L. E. Gurley, Co. factory, which was later that year replaced by the new W. & L. E. Gurley Building, now a National Historic Landmark.

In 1892, there were election riots there during which Robert Ross was murdered. One of his alleged slayers, "Bat" Shea, was executed in 1896.

In 1900 Troy annexed Lansingburgh, a former town and village in Rensselaer County. Lansingburgh is thus often referred to as "North Troy". However, prior to the annexation, that portion of Troy north of Division Street was called North Troy and the neighborhood south of Washington Park is referred to as South Troy. To avoid confusion with streets in Troy following the annexation, Lansingburgh's numbered streets were renamed: its 1st Street, 2nd Street, 3rd Street, etc., became North Troy's 101st Street, 102nd Street, 103rd Street, etc. Lansingburgh was home to the Lansingburgh Academy.

Illustration for Arrow Collar, 1907. J.C. Leyendecker.

In addition to the strong presence of the early American steel industry, Troy was also a manufacturing center for shirts, shirtwaists, collars and cuffs. In 1825, a local resident Hannah Lord Montague, was tired of cleaning her blacksmith husband's shirts. She cut off the collars of her husband's shirts, since only the collar was soiled, bound the edges and attached strings to hold them in place. (This also allowed the collars and cuffs to be starched separately.) Hannah Montague's idea caught on, and changed the fashion for American men's dress for a century. Her patented collars and cuffs were first manufactured by Maullin & Blanchard, which eventually was absorbed by Cluett, Peabody & Company. Cluett's "Arrow shirts" are still worn by men across the country.[2] The large labor force required by the shirt manufacturing industry also, in 1864, produced the nation's first female Labor Union, the Collar Laundry Union, founded in Troy by Kate Mullany. On February 23, 1864, 300 members of the union went on strike. After six days, the laundry owners gave in to their demands and raised wages 25 percent. There were further developments in the industry, when, in 1933, Sanford Cluett invented a process he called Sanforization, a process which shrinks cotton fabrics thoroughly and permanently. Cluett, Peabody's last main plant in Troy was closed in the 1980s, but the industrial output of the plant had long been transferred to facilities in the South.

One of the downtown landmarks of Troy was Frear's Troy Cash Bazaar, also known as Frear's Department Store, which was one of the largest in the state.

When the iron & steel industry moved to Pennsylvania and beyond, and with a similar downturn in the collar industry, Troy's prosperity began to fade. After the passage of Prohibition, and given the strict control of Albany by the Daniel P. O'Connell political machine, Troy became a way station for an illegal alcohol trade from Canada to New York City. Likewise, the stricter control of morality laws in the neighboring New England states, left Troy with openly operating speakeasies and brothels. Gangsters such as Legs Diamond conducted business in Troy. This gave Troy a somewhat colorful reputation through World War II. A few of the finer houses have since been converted to fine restaurants, such as the former Old Daly Inn. Like many old industrial cities, Troy has had to deal with not only the loss of its manufacturing base, but a drainage of population and wealth to suburbs and other parts of the country. Troy's population in 1910 was over 75,000, more than 50% higher than it is today. These factors have led to a sizable degree of dilapidation and disinvestment, although numerous efforts have been made to preserve Troy's architectural and cultural past.

Troy waterfront circa 1909

Kurt Vonnegut lived in Troy and the area, and many of his novels include mentions of Ilium, (Troy), or surrounding local references. Vonnegut wrote Player Piano in 1952, which is set in Ilium, New York, and is based on his experiences working as a public relations writer at General Electric. His 1963 novel, Cat's Cradle, was written by Kurt Vonnegut in the city, and mentions being in Ilium. His recurring main character, Kilgore Trout, is a resident of Cohoes, on the opposite side of the Hudson from Troy.

Notable Troy residents

Exterior of the Troy Public Library.
The Troy Savings Bank, which houses a music hall renowned for its acoustics.
  • Gary C. Evans (1954-1998), serial killer who went on a killing spree in the New York Capital District during the 1980s and 90s.
  • Mame Faye (1866-1943), a world famous madam who operated a bordello at 1725 6th Avenue circa 1906–1941 and is buried in St. Joseph's Cemetery; her name was engraved on her tombstone in 2006. Once one of the wealthiest businesswomen in Troy, her estate was valued at approximately $300,000 (about $3.4 million now)
  • George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr. (1859-1896), inventor of the Ferris wheel, graduated from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1881 with a degree in Civil Engineering
  • Henry Highland Garnet (1815-1882), noted African-American abolitionist, political activist, minister and orator. During his time in Troy, he helped to edit and publish two abolitionist newspapers, The National Watchman and The Clarion
  • Art Ginsburg, television chef known as "Mr. Food."
  • Rutherford Hayner (1877–1941), editor of the Troy Times and author of the three volume set, Troy and Rensselaer county, New York: a history (published, 1925)
  • King Kelly (1857-1894), professional baseball player
  • John Alfred Kimberly, founder of Kimberly-Clark Corporation, was born in Troy, where his father, John, and grandfather, Hazard Kimberly, were in the construction business; the family later moved west to Wisconsin.
  • Stanley King (1883-1951), born in Troy was the eleventh president of Amherst College. He held that position from 1932 to 1946. He was also the uncle of Kingman Brewster, Jr.
  • William Marcy (1786-1857), a notable politician of his era, resided in Troy. Marcy was an associate justice of the New York State Supreme Court, was elected as a Jacksonian Democrat to the United States Senate, serving from 1831 until 1833 and later became Governor of New York, a position he held from 1833 until 1839. Marcy served as United States Secretary of War in the Cabinet of President James K. Polk and United States Secretary of State under President Franklin Pierce. Mount Marcy, the highest peak in New York, and the Town of Marcy in Oneida County are named after him.
  • Herman Melville (1819–1891) lived in Lansingburgh; his residence today called the Herman Melville House, located at 2 114th Street, is on the National Register of Historic Places.[6]
  • Yvar Mikhashoff (1941-1993), classical pianist
  • John Morrissey (1831-1878), bare-knuckle boxer, co-founder of Saratoga Race Course[citation needed], New York State politician.
  • Kate Mullany (1845-1906), an Irish immigrant who, with her co-workers Esther Keegan and Sarah McQuillan, organized approximately 300 women into the first sustained female union in the country, the Collar Laundry Union, in 1864
  • Edward Murphy, Jr., New York politician (Mayor of Troy and one-term United States Senator)
  • William J. O'Brien, United States Army officer killed during World War II and awarded the Medal of Honor
  • Richard Selzer, surgeon and author, was born in Troy. His memoir Down from Troy recounts his experiences there as the son of a physician.
  • Horatio Spafford (1828-1888), composer of the well-known Christian hymn "It Is Well With My Soul", was born in Lansingburgh (now Troy), New York.
  • Maureen Stapleton (1925-2006), American film, stage and television actress. She won an Academy Award, an Emmy and two Tonys and was elected to the American Theatre Hall of Fame; Hudson Valley Community College Theatre is named in her honor.
  • Samuel Wilson (1766-1854), a butcher and meatpacker during the time of the War of 1812, who is believed to have been the inspiration for the personification of the United States known as Uncle Sam

Geography

Map of the neighborhoods of Troy

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 11.0 square miles (28.5 km²), of which 10.4 square miles (27.0 km²) is land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km²) (5.44%) is water.

Troy is located several miles north of Albany near the junction of the Erie and Champlain canals, via the Hudson River and is the terminus of the New York Barge Canal. It is the distributing center for a large area.[7]

The city is on the central part of the western border of Rensselaer County. The Hudson River makes up the western border of the city and the county's border with Albany County. The city borders within Rensselaer County, Schaghticoke to the north, Brunswick to the east, and North Greenbush to the south; to the west the city borders the Albany County town of Colonie, the villages of Menands and Green Island, and the cities of Watervliet and Cohoes. To the northwest Troy borders the Saratoga County village of Waterford within the town of Waterford

The western edge of the city is flat along the river, and then steeply slopes to higher terrain to the east. The average elevation is 50 feet, with the highest elevation being 500 feet in the eastern part of the city. The city is longer than it is wide, with the southern half wider than the northern section of the city often referred to as Lansingburgh, or North Troy. Several kills (Dutch for creek) pass through Troy and empty into the Hudson. The Poesten Kill and Wynants Kill are the two largest and both have several small lakes and waterfalls along their routes in the city. There are several lakes and reservoirs within the city including Ida Lake, Burdens Pond, Lansingburgh Reservoir, Bradley Lake, Smarts Pond and Wright Lake.

Location

Demographics

Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1800 4,926
1810 3,895 −20.9%
1820 5,264 35.1%
1830 11,556 119.5%
1840 19,334 67.3%
1850 28,785 48.9%
1860 39,235 36.3%
1870 46,465 18.4%
1880 56,747 22.1%
1890 60,956 7.4%
1900 69,651 14.3%
1910 76,813 10.3%
1920 71,996 −6.3%
1930 72,763 1.1%
1940 70,304 −3.4%
1950 72,311 2.9%
1960 67,129 −7.2%
1970 62,918 −6.3%
1980 56,638 −10.0%
1990 54,269 −4.2%
2000 49,170 −9.4%
Est. 2007 47,744 −2.9%

At the 2000 census[8], there were 49,170 people, 19,996 households and 10,737 families residing in the city. The population density was 4,721.8 per square mile (1,823.7/km²). There were 23,093 housing units at an average density of 2,217.6/sq mi (856.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 80.22% White, 11.41% African American, 0.28% Native American, 3.49% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 2.20% from other races, and 2.35% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.33% of the population. According the Census Bureau, the largest self-reported ethnic groups in Troy are: Irish (23%), Italian (13%), German (11%), French (8%), English (7%), and Polish (5%).

There were 19,996 households of which 27.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 32.6% were married couples living together, 16.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 46.3% were non-families. 36.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.26 and the average family size was 2.97.

Age distribution was 22.1% under the age of 18, 17.6% from 18 to 24, 28.5% from 25 to 44, 18.1% from 45 to 64, and 13.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 98.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.0 males.

The median household income was $29,844, and the median family income was $38,631. Males had a median income of $30,495 versus $25,724 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,796. About 14.3% of families and 19.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.0% of those under age 18 and 9.5% of those age 65 or over.

Economy

According to the Mayor Harry J. Tutunjian's State of the City Address dated February 6, 2009, Troy's economy is strong despite a recession affecting the United States: "We have not been affected as other parts of the State or the Country. Homes are still selling and new projects are being announced and built."[9]

Culture

Troy is home to many samples of Victorian architecture and iron work. The city has a large number of intact Tiffany stained-glass windows in original architectural settings.[7] With much 19th century architecture, particularly in the Central Troy Historic District, several major movies have filmed in Troy, including Ironweed, The Age of Innocence, Scent of a Woman, The Bostonians, The Emperor's Club, and The Time Machine. There are many buildings in a state of disrepair, but community groups and investors are restoring many of them.

As with many American cities, several city blocks in downtown Troy were razed during the 1970s as a part of an attempted urban renewal plan which was never successfully executed, leaving still vacant areas in the vicinity of Federal Street. Today, however, there have since been much more successful efforts to save the remaining historic downtown structures.

Northern River Street

Part of this effort has been the arrival of the "Antique District" on River Street downtown. Cafes and art galleries are calling the area home. As home to many art, literature, and music lovers, the city hosts many free shows during the summer, on River Street, in parks, and in cafes and coffee shops. The Troy Farmer's Marketis a popular event since 2000 that occurs every Saturday on River Street during the summer, or in the Atrium of downtown Troy during the winter.

Troy has been known to recognize the contributions of its residents to local music and arts community. Mayor Harry Tutunjian declared February 25, 2006 “Super 400 Day in Troy” in honor of the musical group's ten year anniversary.

Many notable artists were born or grew up in Troy, including actress Maureen Stapleton and authors Alice Fulton, Don Rittner and Richard Selzer. Past notable residents include Herman Melville, Emma Willard, Russell Sage, and Jane Fonda. Several books by noted author Kurt Vonnegut are set in the fictional city of "Illium", which is modeled after Troy.

Troy has produced at least three Medal of Honor recipients, including Lt. Colonel William J. O'Brien and Sergeant Thomas A. Baker, both from U.S. Army, 105th Infantry, 27th Infantry Division in World War II, and Specialist Fourth Class Peter C. Guenette from U.S. Army, Company D, 2d Battalion (Airborne), 506th Infantry, 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile), in Vietnam.

Notable cultural events

  • The Troy Flag Day Parade, one of the nation's largest. The parade is held in early June. With resident school, Troy High, having the biggest participating marching band as of 2007.
  • River Street Festival, an annual, family-oriented arts/crafts and music festival held in June.
  • The Uncle Sam Parade, held on or in proximity to Samuel Wilson's birthday (mid-September).
  • The Classics Project, a classical theatre festival produced by Bakerloo Theatre Project. Between fifteen and twenty emerging theatre artists are provided residency with Bakerloo to develop their craft while performing a repertory season of plays by Shakespeare and other great playwrights. The festival occurs during the months of July and August.
  • The Victorian Stroll, an annual holiday event held in December.
  • The Troy Turkey Trot, an annual Thanksgiving Day Run; the oldest race in the Capital District. From it’s humble beginning in 1916 (with only 6 runners entered) the Troy Turkey Trot has grown into one of the largest road races in upstate New York.
  • Troy Night Out, a monthly (last Friday) event in downtown Troy where shops stay open late, restaurants bring in live entertainment, galleries have openings, and the streets fill up with people and events.

Sports

  • The Tri-City Valley Cats, a minor-league Class A affiliate of the Houston Astros. The team is a part of the New York-Penn League. They play at the Joseph L. Bruno Stadium in neighboring North Greenbush.
  • Troy's Fighting Irish, a Minor League Semi-Pro Football club that was established in 2007. The team is a part of the Northeastern Football Alliance and they currently play at Troy High School.[10]
  • Hellions of Troy Roller Derby, a USARS-affiliated women's flat track roller derby was established in 2008. They currently play at Frear Park.
  • Troy was once the home to The 2004–2005 Metropolitan Junior Hockey League (MJHL) Champions, the Hudson Valley Eagles Junior Hockey club who went on place 3rd at the National Tournament in Blaine, MN in 2005 their inaugural season.

Government

The City Council meeting in the former City Hall on River Street

Executive Branch

The Executive Branch consists of a Mayor who serves as the chief executive officer of the city. The Mayor is responsible for the proper administration of all city affairs placed in his/her charge as empowered by the City Charter. The Mayor enforces the laws of New York State as well as all local laws and ordinances passed by the City Council. S/he exercises control over all executive departments of the city government, including the Departments of Finance, Law, Public Safety, Public Works, Public Utilities, and Parks and Recreation.

The Mayor's term of office is four years, and an incumbent is prohibited from serving for more than two consecutive terms (eight years).

The current Mayor of Troy is Harry Tutunjian (R), who is serving his second term, having been re-elected on November 6, 2007.

Electoral history

Results from the last four Mayoral elections (an asterisk indicates the incumbent):

  • November 6, 2007 - Harry Tutunjian *(R,I,C) defeated James Conroy (D), Elda Abate (TPP)
  • November 4, 2003 - Harry Tutunjian (R,I,C) defeated Frank LaPosta (D)
  • November 2, 1999 - Mark Pattison *(D,L,W) defeated Carmella Mantello (R,I,C)
  • November 7, 1995 - Mark Pattison (D,C) defeated Kathleen Jimino (R,RtL,Fre), Michael Petruska (I,W), Michael Rourke (L)
  • prior to the November 1995 election, a city-manager form of government was utilized

Legislative Branch

Troy's Legislative Branch consists of a City Council which is composed of nine elected members: three At-Large Representatives who represent the entire city, and six District Representatives who represent each of the six districts of Troy.

Each Council member serves a two-year term, and an incumbent is prohibited from serving for more than four consecutive terms (eight years). The City Council At-Large Representative who receives the greatest number of votes in the election is designated the City Council President.

The Council meets on the first Thursday of every month at 7:00pm in City Hall, in the Council Chambers on the second floor. All meetings are open to the public, and include a public forum period held before official business where citizens can address the Council on all matters directly pertaining to city government.

The current Troy City Council took office on January 1, 2010, and will serve until December 31, 2011. The members are:

  • Clem Campana (D - At-Large; President)
  • John Brown (D - At-Large)
  • Michael LoPorto (D - At-Large)
  • Kevin McGrath (D - District 1)
  • Mark McGrath (R - District 2)
  • Dean Bodnar (R - District 3)
  • Bill Dunne (D - District 4; President Pro Tempore)
  • Ken Zalewski (D - District 5)
  • Gary Galuski (D - District 6)

Electoral history

Results from the last four Council elections (an asterisk indicates the incumbent):

  • November 3, 2009 - 7 Democrats, 2 Republicans
    • At-Large: Clem Campana *(D,W,TAP), John Brown *(D,W,TAP), Michael LoPorto (D,W,TAP) defeated Henry Bauer *(R,I,C), Stephen Miner (R,I,C), Keith Rogers (R,I,C)
    • District 1: Kevin McGrath (D,C,W) defeated James Gordon (R,I)
    • District 2: Mark McGrath *(R,I,C) defeated Robert Martiniano (D,W)
    • District 3: Dean Bodnar (R,I,C) defeated Richard Hoffmeister (D,TAP), Russell Ziemba (W,G)
    • District 4: Bill Dunne *(D,W) defeated Nicholas Hepler (R,I,C)
    • District 5: Ken Zalewski *(D,W) ran unopposed
    • District 6: Gary Galuski *(D,W) defeated Jason Schofield (R,I,C)
  • November 6, 2007 - 6 Democrats, 3 Republicans
    • At-Large: Clem Campana *(D), John Brown (D), Henry Bauer *(R,I,C) defeated Vito Ciccarelli (R,I,C), Maria Talarico (R,I,C), Wayne Foy (D)
    • District 1: Mark Wojcik *(R,I,C) defeated Victor DeBonis (D)
    • District 2: Mark McGrath *(R,I,C) defeated Mary Sweeney (D,W)
    • District 3: Peter Ryan *(D,W,TAP) defeated Mark Balistreri (R,I,C)
    • District 4: Bill Dunne *(D,W) defeated Beverly Traa (R,I,C)
    • District 5: Ken Zalewski (D) defeated Robert Krogh *(R,I,C)
    • District 6: Gary Galuski (D,W) defeated Carolin Collier *(R,I,C)
  • November 8, 2005 - 6 Republicans, 3 Democrats
    • At-Large: Henry Bauer (R,I,C), Marge DerGurahian *(R,I,C), Clem Campana (D) defeated Robert Armet *(R,I,C), Michael LoPorto (D,W), Robert Martiniano (D)
    • District 1: Mark Wojcik *(R,I,C) defeated Daniel Doran (D,TAP)
    • District 2: Mark McGrath (R,I,C) defeated Flora Carr (D,W,TAP)
    • District 3: Peter Ryan (D,W) defeated Arthur Judge *(R,I,C)
    • District 4: Bill Dunne *(D,W) defeated William Pascarell (R,I,C)
    • District 5: Robert Krogh *(R,I,C) defeated Frank Lamiano (D,W)
    • District 6: Carolin Collier *(R,I,C) defeated James Hockler (D,W)
  • November 4, 2003 - 7 Republicans, 2 Democrats
    • At-Large: Marge DerGurahian (R,I,C), Robert Armet *(R,I,C), Karen Messick (R,I,C) defeated John Pattison (D,W), Austin Devine (D,W), Robert Gregor (D)
    • District 1: Mark Wojcik *(R,I,C) defeated Mary Ellen Hunziker-Luce (D)
    • District 2: Jack Mahoney (D) defeated Wayne Foy *(R,I,C)
    • District 3: Arthur Judge *(R,I,C) defeated Erin Blakeborough (D)
    • District 4: Bill Dunne (D,GNP) defeated Cathryne Collington (R,I,C,W)
    • District 5: Robert Krogh (R,I,C) defeated Daniel Lennon (D)
    • District 6: Carolin Collier *(R,I,C) defeated Joseph Leahy (D)

Political Boundaries

The City of Troy is divided into forty-four (44) Election Districts, also known as EDs. An ED is the finest granularity political district that can be used, from which all other political districts are formed.

Other political districts that make use of these EDs include City Council Districts, County Legislative Districts, State Assembly Districts, State Senate Districts, and U.S. Congressional Districts.

City Council Districts

The 44 EDs are grouped into six Council Districts, as follows:

  • Council District 1: ED1-ED8
  • Council District 2: ED9-ED16
  • Council District 3: ED17-ED23
  • Council District 4: ED24-ED29
  • Council District 5: ED30-ED37
  • Council District 6: ED38-ED44

New York State Assembly Districts

Two New York State Assembly Districts, the 106th and the 108th, each share a portion of their total areas with groups of EDs in Troy as follows:

Other Districts

All other political districts that exist in Troy consist of the entire city -- all 44 EDs:

Civil Service

  • Troy Uniformed Firefighters-Local 86 [3]

Today the Troy Fire Department numbers 119 uniformed personnel and operates 5 engine companies, a rescue engine company, 2 truck companies, three ambulances, a hazardous material response unit, and 2 rescue boats. Approximately 9,000 calls are answered each year, about 500 for fire, about 250 of which occur in structures. The Troy Fire Department is also the hazardous material response unit for the County of Rensselaer.

Anyone with a fire, rescue or medical emergency should dial 911. Routine requests for non-emergency services should be made by dialing (518) 270-5252.

The Fire Chief's Office and administrative personnel are located at 2175 6th Ave (Central Station) and can be reached at (518) 270-4471. The office is staffed from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM Monday through Friday. The Fire Inspector is also available through the Chief's Office during business hours.

FIRE STATIONS

  • Station #1 Lansingburgh Station

115th & 5th Ave

  • Station #2 Bouton Road Station

Bouton Road & 15th Street

  • Station #3 Campbell Avenue Station

530 Campbell Avenue

  • Station #4 North Street Station

North St. & River St.

  • Station #5 Central Station

2175 6th Ave.

  • Station #6 Canal Ave Station

Canal Ave. & 3rd St.

On January 5, 1789 a group of freeholders met at Ashley’s Tavern and changed the name of ‘Ashley’s Ferry’, their recently settled community on the banks of the Hudson River, to Troy. By 1791 Troy became a town, and in the same year the larger Village of Lansingburgh to Troy’s north purchased a ‘Philadelphia’ style hand engine.

All was generally well in the small town called Troy until the afternoon of October 6, 1793 when fire destroyed 14 houses and stores. This loss stirred the citizens of Troy into action, Subael Gorham was appointed Superintendent of the settlement's fire hooks, axes and ladders, and an act of the New York State Legislature compelled the citizens to purchase buckets and firefighting tools.

A second fire at the NW corner of State and River Streets in Asa Anthony’s Store, during the early hours of December 12, 1797, spread and destroyed the hardware store of Benjamin Heart. Early the next year Troy incorporated into a Village and purchased a Newsham style hand engine from a New York dealer. It arrived on a Hudson River sloop and was housed in a small wooden building to the south of the courthouse. In 1799 a narrow shed to house the village hooks and ladders was erected in the center of State Street.

A second engine company, Neptune Engine No. 2 was organized in 1803 and housed on the NW corner of State and Third Streets. A large fire which started at midnight March 18, 1810 destroyed an entire block of business buildings on the east side of River St. from Congress St. to State St. Mutual aid was utilized for the first time with help from the villages of Lansingburgh and Waterford. In 1812 a third engine company, the Washington Volunteers, purchased an engine capable of taking ‘suction’ from a cistern or other standing water source through a hose, a great improvement on the earlier engines which had to be supplied by a bucket brigade in order to pump water through their deck mounted nozzle. Rapid growth of the Village resulted in Troy’s incorporation as a city on April 12, 1816, population at this time was 4,254.

By 1820 Troy had grown to 5,623 and was the 35th largest city in the U.S. The same year, on June 20, a devastating fire destroyed 69 stores and dwellings and 21 outbuildings along River and First Streets. This small conflagration caused a new flurry of fire control effort resulting in the purchase of two new engines and the formation of Hook and Ladder Company No. 1. During the 1820’s the new city suffered few fires but the 11 or 12 fires occurring during the decade did cause great loss.

By 1830 Troy had grown to 11,556 residents, and was the 19th largest city in the U.S. Fast becoming an industrial city due to it’s iron production, Troy lost its first rolling mill, that of the Troy Iron and Nail Co., located on the Wynantskill to fire on January 10, 1831 when a fire being used to thaw out the company’s water wheel spread. The night of January 25, 1834 saw the first use of a fire hydrant on the City’s new system when the Franklin House Hotel at Fulton and Third Streets suffered heavy damage in a 2 AM fire. The City lost it’s first firefighter in the line of duty on January 10, 1835 when simultaneous fires destroyed the Read, Armstrong and Co. Brewery at Ferry and Fifth Sts. and Brittnell’s Soap and Candle Factory, 411- 421 River St. Clark W. Segmann and possibly some other firefighters died from cold exposure on this –18 degree night. The decade saw the formation of a number of engine companies, hose companies and two additional hook and ladder companies.

Having long rung the church bells for alarms of fire, on December 7, 1843, an ordinance was enacted dividing the City into three fire districts with the number of the district with the fire to be rung. No. 1 was south of Congress St., No. 2 between Congress and Elbow (now Fulton) St. and No. 3 north of Elbow St. This was supposed to indicate an approximate location of the alarm for the firefighters, but in practice the policeman or sexton at the bell rope was not often able to ring a distinct 1, 2, or 3 possibly due to overexcitement.

On August 25, 1854 at 1 PM Troy suffered its greatest fire to date when over 100 buildings in 8 city blocks south of Division St. along the riverfront burned. The destruction of a number of industries and lumberyards raised the loss from this fire to a total of $ 1,000,000, a great deal of money at that time. With the city averaging between 50 and 75 fires per year, and suffering a great deal of drunkenness and fighting among the volunteer companies, several influential citizens began to promote the adoption of steam power to pump water and paid firefighters to operate the equipment. Arba Read Steam Fire Engine Co. No. 1 In 1860 the Arba Read Steam Fire Engine Co. No. 1 was formed. A steam pumper was purchased from the Amoskeag Co. of Manchester, N.H. A fully paid engineer was hired to operate this highly technical piece of equipment, but volunteers were still heavily relied upon.

The engine proved practical and soon two more Amoskeags were purchased, one later that year and a third in 1862. On May 10, 1862 Troy suffered its greatest loss by fire. A spark from a locomotive ignited a covered wood railroad bridge to Center Island, and a strong west wind drove the fire into Troy and by evening 508 buildings had been destroyed and at least 8 persons lost their lives. The financial loss was $3.9 million dollars.

Troy installed a new Gamewell Fire Alarm system in late 1868 and placed the system in service on March 25, 1869. Alarms were rung on fire station gongs and the bells of several city churches.

Troy’s last hand engine was replaced with a steamer in April 1882 when Hope Steam Fire Engine Co. No. 7 was formed. River St. grocery Warehouse Fire The Village of Lansingburgh was annexed by Troy on January 1, 1901. By 1906 the city had 1119 volunteers and 61 career firefighters. On May 7, 1908 Truck 2 was formed as the city’s first fully paid company. Engine 14 became the first fully paid engine company on February 2, 1912.

The following year a Knox Chemical-Hose Wagon stationed with E-8 became the City’s first piece of motorized fire apparatus. By 1917 the downtown truck (3) and Engine 8 were motorized Seagraves. 1917 also saw the loss of two firefighters and a battalion chief as the result of an ammonia explosion during a River St. grocery warehouse fire. Chief of Department Patrick Byron died 53 weeks later as a result of injuries suffered in the same explosion. A squad company was organized on July 8, 1919 and outfitted with a new motorized Seagrave chemical wagon. A motorized apparatus On January 23, 1922, by act of the City Council, all remaining volunteer companies were disbanded, the TFD was now a fully paid department. On November 1, 1923 a second platoon was formed, firefighters worked a 10 and 14 hour schedule for a short time.

In the summer of 1924 the last of the horse drawn engines and trucks were replaced by motorized apparatus. A third platoon was formed on January 1, 1959 allowing Troy’s firefighters a 56 hour workweek. Also in 1959 the fire alarm telegraph system was removed and replaced with telephone boxes. On February 4, 1973 a fourth platoon was formed, reducing the firefighters workweek to 40 hours. The telephone boxes were removed from the street corners on February 15, 1982. April 1, 1981 saw the TFD take over emergency medical response in the city and on October 9, 1995 emergency medical transport was taken over by the TFD.

Education

There were several important educational advances that took place in Troy, especially in scientific education and the education of women.

Under the patronage of Stephen van Rensselaer, Troy was the home of the first strictly scientific academic institution in the United States, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, and which trained that corps of students which later founded the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sheffield Scientific School at Yale, and virtually every subsequent American scientific academic institution.

Emma Willard was a national leader in the education of women, and the author of standard instructional textbooks used for decades nationwide. She was involved in the establishment of several women's colleges, but most especially at Troy the Russell Sage College, and the Emma Willard School.

Colleges and Universities

Secondary Schools

Elementary Schools

  • School #1
  • School #2
  • School #12
  • School #14
  • School #16
  • School #18
  • Carroll Hill

Landmarks

Some famous and interesting portions of Troy include:

Painted concrete slabs spelling out the city's name placed on the western slope of Prospect Park.
Troy Gas Light Company, Gasholder House

References

  1. ^ Ilium fuit is the well-known expression from the Aeneid, where it is the beginning of Parthus' reply to Aeneas. Aeneid, Bk. II., 325. 30 153, and which had come to mean a complete and final end. The second half, Troja est, is a defiant declaratory statement that nevertheless, Troy still lives.
  2. ^ "A Resourceful People A Pictorical History of Rensselaer County, New York"
  3. ^ US News (2006). "America's Best Colleges 2007". http://www.usnews.com/usnews/edu/college/rankings/brief/t1natudoc_brief.php. Retrieved 2007-12-01. 
  4. ^ "RPI History Main Page". http://www.rpi.edu/about/history.html. Retrieved 2007-01-21. 
  5. ^ "Rensselaer in Brief". 2008. http://catalog.rpi.edu/content.php?catoid=4&navoid=76. Retrieved 2008-05-22. 
  6. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2008-04-15. http://www.nr.nps.gov/. 
  7. ^ a b Robert Breuer, Troy's RiverSpark Visitor Center. Retrieved 1 August 2007.
  8. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  9. ^ "Troy Mayor's Office: Mayor's Weekly Message". 2009-02-06. http://www.troyny.gov/mayor/mayors_office.html. Retrieved 2009-02-15. 
  10. ^ "Troy's Fighting Irish Semi-Pro Football Team". eteamz. 2010. http://www.eteamz.com/tfifootball. Retrieved 2010-02-08. 
  11. ^ "50 years of innovation and excellence". Hudson Valley Community College. https://www.hvcc.edu/50/index.html. Retrieved 2009-12-21. 
  12. ^ "Troy Gas Light Company, Gasholder House". Society for Industrial Archeology. http://www.siahq.org/about/troygasholder/images/TroyGasholderHouse.pdf. Retrieved 2010-01-23. 

Further reading

Rensselaer County histories

Troy histories

External links

Government

Culture

History

Geography


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

TROY, a city and the county-seat of Rensselaer county, New York, U.S.A., at the head of tidewater on the eastern bank of the Hudson river, opposite the mouth of the Mohawk, about 6 m. N. of Albany and about 148 m. N. of New York City. Pop. (1880), 56,747; (1890), 60,956; (Icoo), 60,651, of whom 14,384 were foreign-born (7348 being Irish, 17 9 6 German and 1498 English) and 400 were negroes; (1910, census), 76,813. Troy is served by the Boston & Maine, the New York Central & Hudson River and the Delaware && Hudson railways, and by interurban electric lines connecting with Saratoga and Lake George on the north, Albany on the south and Schenectady and the cities of the populous Mohawk Valley on the west; it is at the head of river steamboat navigation on the Hudson, and has water communication by means of the Erie and Champlain canals with the Great Lakes and Canada. The site is a level oblong tract extending along the Hudson for 7 m. and reaching back a mile or so from the river to highlands which rise to a height of 400 ft., with Mt Ida (240 ft. above tidewater) forming a picturesque background. The older part of the city and the principal business and manufacturing district occupies the low lands; the newer part, chiefly residential, is built upon the heights. The northern part of the city was the village of Lansingburg (pop. 1900, 12,595) until 1901, when with parts of the towns of Brunswick and North Greenbush it was annexed to Troy. Opposite Troy on the west bank of the Hudson, and connected with it by bridges, are Cohoes, Watervliet and Waterford. Industrially and commercially they virtually form a part of Troy. Troy is the seat of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded. in 1824 by Stephen van Rensselaer as a "school of theoretical and practical science," incorporated in 1826, and reorganized in 1849 as a general polytechnic institute. It is the oldest school of engineering in the country, and has always maintained a high rank of efficiency. The large gifts (about $1,000,000) to the school made by Mrs Russell Sage in 1907 enabled it to add courses in mechanical and electrical engineering to its course in civil engineering. The institute had 55 instructors and 650 students in 1910. The Emma Willard School, founded as the Troy Female Seminary in 1821 by Mrs Emma Willard (1787-1870), 1 is one of the oldest schools for women in the United States. Other educational institutions include Troy Academy (1834), a non-sectarian preparatory school; La Salle Institute (conducted by the Brothers of the Christian Schools); St Joseph's Academy (Roman Catholic) and St Peter's Academy (Roman Catholic). Noteworthy buildings of a public and semi-public character include the post office, the public library, containing in 1910 43,500 volumes, the Troy Savings Bank building, the city hall, the Rensselaer county court house, a Y.M.C.A. building and St Paul's Episcopal, the Second Presbyterian and St Mary's (Roman Catholic) churches. An area of 175 acres is comprised in the city's parks, the largest of which are Prospect Park and Beman Park. In Oakwood cemetery, 400 acres, are the grave of General George H. Thomas, and a monolithic shaft to the memory of General John Ellis Wool (1784-1869), who served with distinction in the War of 1812 and in the Mexican War, and in the Civil War commanded for a time the Department of Virginia. In Washington Square there is a Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument, 93 ft. high. Altro Park, on an island a short distance down the river, is a pleasure resort in summer.

Two rapid streams, Poesten Kill and Wynants Kill, flowing into the Hudson from the east, through deep ravines, furnish good water-power, which, with that furnished by the state dam across the Hudson here, is utilized for manufacturing purposes. In 1905 the value of Troy's factory product was $31,860,829. Of this $11,271,708 was the value of collars and cuffs (89.5% of the value of the total American product), an industry which gave employment to 49.3% of the wage-earners in Troy, and paid 42.1% of the wages. Closely allied with this industry was shirt-making, with an output valued at $4,263,610. Troy is the market for a fertile agricultural region, and the principal jobbing centre for a large district in north-eastern New York and eastern Massachusetts.

The site of Troy was part of the Van Rensselaer manor grant of 1629. In 1659 it was bought from the Indians, with the consent of the patroon, by Jan Barentsen Wemp, and several families settled here. In 1707 it passed into the hands of Derick van der Heyden, who laid out a large farm. During this early period was known variously as Ferryhook, Ashley's Ferry and Van der Heyden's Ferry. In 1777 General Philip Schuyler established his headquarters on Van Schaick's Island in the Mohawk and Hudson, then the principal rendezvous of the army which later met Burgoyne at Saratoga. After the close of the war there was an influx of settlers from Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Vermont; a town was laid out on the Van der Heyden farm, and in 1789 the name of Troy was selected in town meeting; and in 1791 the town of Troy was formed from part of Rensselaerwyck. The county-seat was established here in 17 9 3, and Troy was incorporated as a village in 1794 and was chartered as a city in 1816. The first newspaper, The 1 Emma Hart was born in Berlin, Connecticut, became a teacher in 1803, and in 1809 married Dr John Willard of Middlebury. Vermont, where she opened a boarding school for girls in 1814. In 1819 she wrote A Plan for Improving Female Education, submitted to the governor of New York state; and in 1821 she removed to Troy. Her son took charge of the school in 1838. She prepared many textbooks and wrote Journal and Letters from France and Great Britain (1833).(1833). See the biography (1873) by John Lord.

Farmer's Oracle, began publication in 1797. In 181 2 a steamboat line was established between Troy and Albany. Troy benefited financially by the War of 1812, during which contracts for army beef were filled here. The opening of the Erie Canal in 1825 contributed greatly to Troy's commercial importance. During the Civil War army supplies, ammunition and cannon, and the armour-plate and parts of the machinery for the "Monitor" were made here. The first puddling works were opened in 1839, and Troy was long the centre of the New York iron and steel industry; in 1865 the second Bessemer steel works in the United States were opened here. Troy has three times been visited by severe conflagrations, that of June 1820 entailing a loss of about $1,000,000, that of August 1854 about the same, and that of May 1862, known as "the Great Fire," the destruction of over Soo buildings, and a property loss of some $3,000,000.

See Arthur J. Weise, History of the City of Troy (Troy, 1876), and Troy's One Hundred Years (Troy, 1891).


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Genealogy

Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Familypedia

Troy
Official seal of Troy
Seal
Nickname: "The Collar City"
Motto: "'Ilium fuit, Troja est'"
Country United States
State New York
County Rensselaer County, New York
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
[[ZIP Code]] 12179-12182
Website: City of Troy, New York

Troy is a city in New York, U.S., and the county seat of Rensselaer County. As of the 2000 census, the population was 49,170. Troy's motto is Ilium fuit, Troja est, which means "Ilium was, Troy is."[1]

Troy is located on the western edge of Rensselaer County and on the eastern bank of the Hudson River. Troy has close ties with the nearby cities of Albany and Schenectady, forming a region popularly called the Capital District. The city is one of the three major centers for the Albany-Schenectady-Troy Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), the metro area has a population of 850,957. Troy is home to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Russell Sage College, Hudson Valley Community College and the Emma Willard School, and was the hometown of Uncle Sam.

Contents

History

The site of the city was a part of the Van Rensselaer grant of 1629. Dirck Van der Heyden was one of the first settlers. In 1707, he purchased a farm of 65 acres (26 ha) which in 1787 was laid out as a village.

A local legend that a Dutch girl had been kidnapped by an Indian male who did not want her to marry someone else gained some credence when two skeletons were found in a cave under Poestenkill Falls in the 1950s. One skeleton was female and Caucasian with an iron ring. The other was Native-American and male.

The name Troy (after the legendary city of Troy, made famous in Homer's Iliad) was adopted in 1789, and the region was formed into the Town of Troy in 1791 from part of the Rensselaerwyck Manor. The township included the current city and the town of Brunswick. Troy became a village in 1801 and was chartered as a city in 1816. In 1900, the city of Lansingburgh was merged into Troy.

In the post-Revolutionary War years, as central New York was first settled, there was a strong trend to classical names, and Troy's naming fits the same pattern as the New York cities of Syracuse, Rome, Utica, Ithaca, or the towns of Sempronius, Manlius, or dozens of other classically named towns to the west of Troy.

Northern and Western New York was a theater of the War of 1812, and militia and regular army forces were led by Stephen Van Rensselaer of Troy. Quartermaster supplies were shipped through Troy. A local butcher and meat-packer named Samuel Wilson supplied the military, and, according to an unprovable legend, barrels stamped "U.S." were jokingly taken by the troops to stand for "Uncle Sam" meaning Wilson. Troy has since claimed to be the historical home of Uncle Sam.

Through much of the 19th and into the early 20th century, Troy was not only one of the most prosperous cities in New York State, but one of the most prosperous cities in the entire country. Prior to its rise as an industrial center, Troy was the transshipment point for meat and vegetables from Vermont which were sent by the Hudson River to New York City. The Federal Dam at Troy is the head of the tides in the Hudson River and Hudson River sloops and steamboats plied the river on a regular basis. This trade was vastly increased after the construction of the Erie Canal, with its eastern terminus directly across the Hudson from Troy at Cohoes in 1825.

Troy's one-time great wealth was produced in the steel industry, with the first American Bessemer converter erected on the small Postenkill river in a small valley near the middle of the city. The industry first used charcoal and iron ore from the Adirondacks. Later on, ore and coal from the Midwest was shipped on the Erie Canal to Troy, and there processed before being sent on down the Hudson to New York City. The iron and steel was also used by the extensive federal arsenal across the Hudson at Watervliet, New York, then called West Troy. After the American Civil War, the steel production industry moved west to be closer to raw materials. The presence of iron and steel also made it possible for Troy to be an early site in the development of iron storefronts and steel structural supports in architecture, and there are some significant early examples still in the city.

The initial emphasis on heavier industry later spawned a wide variety of highly engineered mechanical and scientific equipment. Troy was the home of W. & L. E. Gurley, Co., makers of precision instruments. Gurley's theodolites were used to survey much of the American West after the Civil War and were highly regarded until laser and digital technology eclipsed the telescope and compass technology in the 1970s. Bells manufactured by Troy's Meneely Bell Company ring all over the world. And Troy was also home to a manufacturer of racing shells that used impregnated paper in a process that presaged the later use of fiberglass, Kevlar and carbon fiber composites.

This scientific and technical proficiency was supported by the presence of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, or RPI, one of the highest-ranked engineering schools in the country.[2] RPI was originally sponsored by Stephen Van Rensselaer, one of the most prominent members of that family. RPI was founded in 1824, and eventually absorbed the campus of the short-lived, liberal arts based Troy University, which closed in 1862 during the Civil War. Rensselaer founded RPI for the "application of science to the common purposes of life", and it is the oldest technological university in the English-speaking world.[3] The institute is known for its success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace.[4]

On December 23, 1823, The Troy Sentinel was the first publisher of the world-famous Christmas poem "A Visit from St. Nicholas" (also known as "The Night Before Christmas" or "Twas the Night Before Christmas"). The poem was published anonymously. Its author has long been believed to have been Clement Clarke Moore, but its author is now regarded by a few to have been Henry Livingston, Jr.

Troy was an early home of professional baseball, and was the host of two major league teams. The first team to call Troy home was the Troy Haymakers, a National Association team in 1871 and 1872. One of their major players was Williams H. "Bill" Craver, a noted catcher and Civil War veteran, who also managed the team. Their last manager was Jimmy Wood, reckoned the first Canadian in professional baseball. The Troy Haymakers folded, and Troy had no team for seven seasons. Then, for four seasons, 1879 to 1882, Troy was home to the National League Troy Trojans. The Trojans were not competitive in the league, but they did have the biggest hitter in professional baseball, Dan Brouthers.[1] For the 1883 season, the Trojans were moved to New York City where they became the New York Gothams, better know later as the Giants. The Gothams had the same ownership as the New York Metropolitans of the rival American Association. As a result classic Met players became Giants, including Hall of Fame Pitcher Tim Keefe. Troy was also the birthplace of the famous player Michael Joseph "King" Kelly.

Troy has been nearly destroyed by fire three times. The Great Troy fire of 1862 burnt the W. & L. E. Gurley, Co. factory, which was later that year replaced by the new W. & L. E. Gurley Building, now a National Historic Landmark.

In 1892, there were election riots there during which Robert Ross was murdered. One of his alleged slayers, "Bat" Shea, was executed in 1896.

In 1900 Troy annexed Lansingburgh, a former town and village in Rensselaer County. Lansingburgh is thus often referred to as "North Troy". However, prior to the annexation, that portion of Troy north of Division Street was called North Troy and the neighborhood south of Washington Park is referred to as South Troy. To avoid confusion with streets in Troy following the annexation, Lansingburgh's numbered streets were renamed: its 1st Street, 2nd Street, 3rd Street, etc., became North Troy's 101st Street, 102nd Street, 103rd Street, etc. Lansingburgh was home to the Lansingburgh Academy.

File:Leyendecker arrow color 1907.jpg
Illustration for Arrow Collar, 1907. J.C. Leyendecker.

In addition to the strong presence of the early American steel industry, Troy was also a manufacturing center for shirts, shirtwaists, collars and cuffs. In 1825, a local resident Hannah Lord Montague, was tired of cleaning her blacksmith husband's shirts. She cut off the collars of her husband's shirts, since only the collar was soiled, bound the edges and attached strings to hold them in place. (This also allowed the collars and cuffs to be starched separately.) Hannah Montague's idea caught on, and changed the fashion for American men's dress for a century. Her patented collars and cuffs were first manufactured by Maullin & Blanchard, which eventually was absorbed by Cluett, Peabody & Company. Cluett's "Arrow shirts" are still worn by men across the country.[2] The large labor force required by the shirt manufacturing industry also, in 1864, produced the nation's first female Labor Union, the Collar Laundry Union, founded in Troy by Kate Mullany. On February 23, 1864, 300 members of the union went on strike. After six days, the laundry owners gave in to their demands and raised wages 25 percent. There were further developments in the industry, when, in 1933, Sanford Cluett invented a process he called Sanforization, a process which shrinks cotton fabrics thoroughly and permanently. Cluett, Peabody's last main plant in Troy was closed in the 1980s, but the industrial output of the plant had long been transferred to facilities in the South.

One of the downtown landmarks of troy was Frear's Troy Cash Bazaar, also known as Frear's Department Store, which was one of the largest in the state.

When the iron & steel industry moved to Pennsylvania and beyond, and with a similar downturn in the collar industry, Troy's prosperity began to fade. After the passage of Prohibition, and given the strict control of Albany by the Daniel P. O'Connell political machine, Troy became a way station for an illegal alcohol trade from Canada to New York City. Likewise, the stricter control of morality laws in the neighboring New England states, left Troy with openly operating speakeasies and brothels. Gangsters such as Legs Diamond conducted business in Troy. This gave Troy a somewhat colorful reputation through World War II. A few of the finer houses have since been converted to fine restaurants, such as the former Old Daly Inn. Like many old industrial cities, Troy has had to deal with not only the loss of its manufacturing base, but a drainage of population and wealth to suburbs and other parts of the country. Troy's population in 1910 was over 75,000, this is more than 50% higher than today. These factors have lead to a sizable degree of dilapidation and disinvestment, although numerous efforts have been made to preserve Troy's architectural and cultural past.

File:Troy NY 1909 LOC 6a14121u.jpg
Troy waterfront circa 1909

Kurt Vonnegut lived in Troy and the area, and many of his novels include mentions of Ilium, (Troy), or surrounding local references. Vonnegut wrote Player Piano in 1952, which is set in Ilium, New York, and is based on his experiences working as a public relations writer at General Electric. His 1963 novel, Cat's Cradle, was written by Kurt Vonnegut in the city, and mentions being in Ilium. His recurring main character, Kilgore Trout, is a resident of Cohoes, on the opposite side of the Hudson from Troy.

Other notable historical events in Troy

  • July 22, 1928: Temperature of Template:Convert/LoffAoffDbSoffT recorded, which is the highest temperature ever recorded in New York State.
  • 1983: The restaurant chain Bruegger's is founded in downtown Troy.

Notable Troy residents

Template:Unreferenced section

File:Troy Public Library exterior 1.jpg
Exterior of the Troy Public Library.
File:TroySavingsBankMusicHallPanorama.jpg
The Troy Savings Bank, which houses a music hall renowned for its acoustics.
  • Kate Mullany, an Irish immigrant who, with her co-workers Esther Keegan and Sarah McQuillan, organized approximately 300 women into the first sustained female union in the country, the Collar Laundry Union, in 1864
  • George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr., famous for inventing the Ferris wheel, graduated from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1881 with a degree in Civil Engineering
  • Rev. Henry Highland Garnet, noted African-American abolitionist, political activist, minister and orator. During his time in Troy, he helped to edit and publish two abolitionist newspapers, The National Watchman and The Clarion
  • Samuel Wilson, a butcher and meatpacker during the time of the War of 1812, who is believed to have been the inspiration for the personification of the United States known as Uncle Sam
  • William Marcy, a notable politician of his era, who resided in Troy. Marcy was an associate justice of the New York State Supreme Court, was elected as a Jacksonian Democrat to the United States Senate, serving from 1831 until 1833 and later became Governor of New York, a position he held from 1833 until 1839. Marcy served as United States Secretary of War in the Cabinet of President James K. Polk and United States Secretary of State under President Franklin Pierce. Mount Marcy, the highest peak in New York, and the Town of Marcy in Oneida County are named after him
  • Gary C. Evans, serial killer who went on a killing spree in the New York Capital District
  • John Morrissey, "undefeated boxing champion" (according to The Troy Record), co-founder of Saratoga Race Course , New York State politician
  • Maureen Stapleton, American film, stage and television actress; won an Academy Award, an Emmy Award, two Tony Awards, and was elected to the American Theatre Hall of Fame; Hudson Valley Community College Theatre is named in her honor
  • John Alfred Kimberly, founder of Kimberly-Clark Corporation, was born in Troy, where his father, John, and grandfather, Hazard Kimberly, were in the construction business; the family later moved west to Wisconsin
  • Yvar Mikhashoff, classical pianist
  • William J. O'Brien, United States Army officer killed during World War II and awarded the Medal of Honor
  • Mame Faye (also spelled Mame Fay, Mayme Fay, etc.), a world famous madam who operated a bordello at 1725 6th Avenue circa 1906-1941. She died at the age of 77 in 1943 and is buried in St. Joseph's Cemetery; her name was engraved on her tombstone in 2006. Once one of the wealthiest businesswomen in Troy, her estate was valued at approximately $300,000 (about $3.4 million now)
  • Horatio Spafford, composer of the well-known Christian hymn "It Is Well With My Soul", was born in Lansingburgh (now Troy), New York
  • Rutherford Hayner, 1877-1941, editor of the Troy Times and author of the three volume set, Troy and Rensselaer county, New York: a history (published, 1925)
  • Herman Melville, (1819-1891) lived in Lansingburgh, his residence today called the Herman Melville House is on the National Register of Historic Places.[5] He was the author of Moby-Dick, Typee, and many other notable American novels
  • King Kelly, (former) Major Leage Baseball player
  • Edward Murphy, Jr., New York politician (Mayor of Troy and one-term United States Senator)

Geography

File:Troy Panorama.jpg
Panorama of Troy. Image taken from RPI's Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, one block north of Congress Street. On the extreme right is Kennedy Tower. On the extreme left is the Empire State Plaza. Across the Hudson River in the center is the city of Watervliet.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 11.0 square miles (28.5 km²), of which, 10.4 square miles (27.0 km²) of it is land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km²) of it (5.44%) is water.

Troy is located several miles north of Albany near the juncture of the Erie and Champlain canals, via the Hudson River and is the terminus of the New York Barge Canal. It is the distributing center for a large area.[6]

The city is south of Washington County and is situated in the center of surrounding countryside. On the east are the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts, south is the valley of the Hudson, west the valley of the Mohawk, and on the north the Adirondack Mountains.

Demographics

As of the censusGR2 of 2000, there were 49,170 people, 19,996 households, and 10,737 families residing in the city. The population density was 4,721.8 people per square mile (1,823.7/km²). There were 23,093 housing units at an average density of 2,217.6/sq mi (856.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 80.22% White, 11.41% African American, 0.28% Native American, 3.49% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 2.20% from other races, and 2.35% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.33% of the population. According the Census Bureau, the largest self-reported ethnic groups in Troy are: Irish (23%), Italian (13%), German (11%), French (8%), English (7%), and Polish (5%).

There were 19,996 households out of which 27.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 32.6% were married couples living together, 16.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 46.3% were non-families. 36.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.26 and the average family size was 2.97.

In the city the population was spread out with 22.1% under the age of 18, 17.6% from 18 to 24, 28.5% from 25 to 44, 18.1% from 45 to 64, and 13.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 98.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.0 males.

The median household income was $29,844, and the median income for a family was $38,631. Males had a median income of $30,495 versus $25,724 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,796. About 14.3% of families and 19.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.0% of those under age 18 and 9.5% of those age 65 or over.

Economy

According to the Mayor Harry J. Tutunjian's State of the City Address dated February 6, 2009, Troy's economy is strong despite a recession affecting the United States: "We have not been affected as other parts of the State or the Country. Homes are still selling and new projects are being announced and built."[7]

Culture

Troy is home to many samples of Victorian architecture and iron work. The city has a large number of intact Tiffany stained-glass windows in original architectural settings.[6] With much 19th century architecture, particularly in the Central Troy Historic District, several major movies have filmed in Troy, including Ironweed, Age of Innocence, Scent of a Woman, The Bostonians, The Emperor's Club, and The Time Machine. There are many buildings in a state of disrepair, but community groups and investors are restoring many of them.

As with many American cities, several city blocks in downtown Troy were razed during the 1970s as a part of an attempted urban renewal plan which was never successfully executed, leaving still vacant areas in the vicinity of Federal Street. Today, however, there have since been much more successful efforts to save the remaining historic downtown structures.

File:RiverStreetTroyNY.JPG
Northern River Street

Part of this effort has been the arrival of the "Antique District" on River Street downtown. Cafes and art galleries are calling the area home. As home to many art, literature, and music lovers, the city hosts many free shows during the summer, on River Street, in parks, and in cafes and coffee shops. The Troy Farmer's Marketis a popular event since 2000 that occurs every Saturday on River Street during the summer, or in the Atrium of downtown Troy during the winter.

Troy has been known to recognize the contributions of its residents to local music and arts community. Mayor Harry Tutunjian declared February 25 2006 “Super 400 Day in Troy” in honor of the musical group's ten year anniversary.

Many notable artists were born or grew up in Troy, including actress Maureen Stapleton and authors Alice Fulton, Don Rittner and Richard Selzer. Past notable residents include Herman Melville, Emma Willard, Russell Sage, and Jane Fonda. Several books by noted author Kurt Vonnegut are set in the fictional city of "Illium", which is modeled after Troy.

Troy has produced at least three Medal of Honor recipients, including Lt. Colonel William J. O'Brien and Sergeant Thomas A. Baker, both from U.S. Army, 105th Infantry, 27th Infantry Division in World War II, and Specialist Fourth Class Peter C. Guenette from U.S. Army, Company D, 2d Battalion (Airborne), 506th Infantry, 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile), in Vietnam.

Notable cultural events

  • The Troy Flag Day Parade, one of the nation's largest. The parade is held in early June. With resident school, Troy High, having the biggest participating marching band as of 2007.
  • River Street Festival, an annual, family-oriented arts/crafts and music festival held in June.
  • The Uncle Sam Parade, held on or in proximity to Samuel Wilson's birthday (mid-September).
  • The Classics Project, a classical theatre festival produced by Bakerloo Theatre Project. Between fifteen and twenty emerging theatre artists are provided residency with Bakerloo to develop their craft while performing a repertory season of plays by Shakespeare and other great playwrights. The festival occurs during the months of July and August.
  • The Victorian Stroll, an annual holiday event held in December.
  • The Troy Turkey Trot, an annual Thanksgiving Day Run; the oldest race in the Capital District. From it’s humble beginning in 1916 (with only 6 runners entered) the Troy Turkey Trot has grown into one of the largest road races in upstate New York.
  • Troy Night Out, a monthly (last Friday) event in downtown Troy where shops stay open late, restaurants bring in live entertainment, galleries have openings, and the streets fill up with people and events.

Sports

  • The Tri-City Valley Cats, a minor-league Class A affiliate of the Houston Astros. The team is a part of the New York-Penn League.
  • Troy Fighting Irish, a minor league semi-pro Football club that was established in 2007. They currently play at Troy High School.[3]

Political structure

File:TroyNYCityHall.jpg
Current city hall

The Executive Branch consists of Mayor Harry Tutunjian (R), who defeated Frank LaPosta (D) for the position in November 2003 and began his term January 2004. Tutunjian was re-elected to a second term on November 6, 2007 after defeating Jim Conroy (D). Troy's Legislative Branch consists of a City Council. The Council is composed of nine elected members: three At-Large Representatives who represent the entire city, and six District Representatives who represent each of the six districts of Troy. Each council member serves a two-year term. The City Council At-Large Representative who receives the greatest number of votes in the election is designated the City Council President (currently Clem Campana). The Council meets on the first Thursday of every month at 7:00pm in City Hall, in the Council Chambers on the second floor. All meetings are open to the public, and include a public forum period held before official business where citizens can address the Council on all matters directly pertaining to city government.

The current Troy City Council took office on January 1, 2008, and will serve until December 31, 2009. The members are:

  • Clem Campana (D - At-Large; President)
  • Bill Dunne (D - District 4; President Pro Tempore)
  • John Brown (D - At-Large)
  • Henry Bauer (R - At-Large)
  • Mark Wojcik (R - District 1)
  • Mark McGrath (R - District 2)
  • Peter Ryan (D - District 3)
  • Ken Zalewski (D - District 5)
  • Gary Galuski (D - District 6)

The previous council members (for the period of January 1, 2006 to December 31, 2007) were:

Henry Bauer (R - At-Large; President), Carolin Collier (R - District 6; President Pro Tempore), Marge DerGurahian (I - At-Large), Clem Campana (D - At-Large), Mark Wojcik (R - District 1), Mark McGrath (R - District 2), Peter Ryan (D - District 3), Bill Dunne (D - District 4), and Robert Krogh (R - District 5).

Most of the city resides in New York's 21st congressional district. This seat was held by Congressman Michael R. McNulty from 1989 to 2009. Democrat Paul Tonko, was elected on November 4, 2008[8] and is currently a member of the 111th Congress.

Education

There were several important educational advances that took place in Troy, especially in scientific education and the education of women.

Under the patronage of Stephen van Rensselaer, Troy was the home of the first strictly scientific academic institution in the United States, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, and which trained that corps of students which later founded the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sheffield Scientific School at Yale, and virtually every subsequent American scientific academic institution.

Emma Willard was a national leader in the education of women, and the author of standard instructional textbooks used for decades nationwide. She was involved in the establishment of several women's colleges, but most especially at Troy the Russell Sage College, and the Emma Willard School.

Colleges and Universities

  • Hudson Valley Community College
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Russell Sage College

Secondary Schools

  • Catholic Central High School (Troy, New York) (Private; Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany)
  • Emma Willard School (Private)
  • Knickerbacker Middle School (Lansingburgh Central School District)
  • Lansingburgh High School (Lansingburgh Central School District)
  • La Salle Institute (Private; Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany)
  • Troy High School (Enlarged City School District of Troy)
  • W. Kenneth Doyle Middle School (Enlarged City School District of Troy)
  • Redemption Christian Academy

Elementary Schools

  • School #1
  • School #2
  • School #12
  • School #14
  • School #16
  • School #18
  • Carroll Hill

Landmarks

Some famous and interesting portions of Troy include:

File:TroyNYSign.JPG
Painted concrete slabs spelling out the city's name placed on the western slope of Prospect Park.
  • Oakwood Cemetery - Located in North Troy, or Lansingburgh, it is the final resting place of many famous Americans; among them, Civil War Major General George Henry Thomas, known as "The Rock of Chickamauga", and Samuel Wilson, better known as Uncle Sam.
  • Forest Park Cemetery - A famed haunted cemetery on Pinewoods Avenue in the nearby town of Brunswick.
  • W.H. Frear Department Store
  • Burden Iron Works
  • Country Club of Troy
  • The Paine Mansion (known as "The Castle") at 49 2nd Street
  • Russell Sage College - liberal arts women's college
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute - Oldest technological institute in the English-speaking world.
  • Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center - a state of the art performing arts center on the RPI campus
  • Chapel + Cultural Center at Rensselaer - Unique multipurpose performing arts and religious center.
  • Woodside Church - Neo-Gothic church in South Troy now home to the Contemporary Artists Center
  • Hudson Valley Community College - Ranked as one of the Top 100 two-year colleges in the nation by Community College Week in 2004.
  • Houston Field House - Hosts various concert events and RPI Hockey.
  • Emma Willard School - Oldest secondary school for girls in the United States.
  • Frear Park
  • Prospect Park
  • Troy Savings Bank Music Hall - World renowned for being "an acoustic marvel."
  • Washington Street
  • Troy Public Library
  • St. Peter's Church
  • Kennedy Towers, at 19 stories, is the tallest building in Troy. Part of the Troy Public Housing Authority, the plan originally called for two towers but only one was built. The name still remains towers despite this.
  • Olde Judge Mansion - the only bed and breakfast in Troy (located in Lansingburgh)

References

  1. ^ 'Ilium fuit' is the well-known expression from the Aeneid, where it is the beginning of Parthus' reply to Aeneas. Aeneid, Bk. II., 325. 30 153, and which had come to mean a complete and final end. The second half, 'Troja est', is a defiant declaratory statement that nevertheless, Troy still lives.
  2. ^ US News (2006). America's Best Colleges 2007. Retrieved on 2007-12-01.
  3. ^ RPI History Main Page. Retrieved on 2007-01-21.
  4. ^ Rensselaer in Brief (2008). Retrieved on 2008-05-22.
  5. ^ National Register Information System. National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service (2008-04-15).
  6. ^ a b Robert Breuer, Troy's RiverSpark Visitor Center. Retrieved 1 August 2007.
  7. ^ Troy Mayor's Office: Mayor's Weekly Message (2009-02-06). Retrieved on 2009-02-15.
  8. ^ Stanforth, Lauren, Carol DeMare. "Tonko cruises to win in 21st Congressional District", Times Union (Albany), 2008-11-05. Retrieved on 2008-12-06. 

External links


This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Troy, New York. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.
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County names Troy, New York  +
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Localities of nation-subdivision1 New York  +
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Short name Troy  +

This article uses material from the "Troy, New York" article on the Genealogy wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

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