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Facts about New York

History | Symbols | Interesting Facts | Famous People

Statehood:  July 26, 1788, the 11th state 

Capital:  Albany

Total Area:  27th among states, 141,299 sq km (54,556 sq mi)

Water Area:  17,524 sq km (6,766 sq mi)

Highest Point:  Mount Marcy, 1,629 m (5,344 ft)

Total Population:   3rd among states
2010 census - 19,378,102

Population Density in 2010:  411.2  people per sq mi

Distribution in 2000: 87.4% Urban, 12.6% Rural

Gross State Product - $1.1 trillion (2010)
Personal income per Capita - $46,957 (2009)

Largest cities in 2010: 
New York City:  8,175,133
Buffalo:  261,310
Rochester:  210,565

  • Delta Phi, the oldest continually operated fraternity, is located at Union College.  Sigma Phi was also started on this campus. 

  • Joseph Gayetty of New York City invented toilet paper in 1857. 

  • New York was the first state to require license plates for cars. 

  • The first American chess tournament was held in New York in 1843. 

  • Jell-O, marshmallows, French’s Mustard, and gold teeth were all developed in Rochester. 

  • The “New York Post,” founded in 1803 by Alexander Hamilton, is the oldest running newspaper in the United States. 

  • Hartsdale has a pet cemetery that contains over 12,000 plots. 

  • The longest game in baseball history was played between Rochester and the Pawtucket Red Socks.  The game lasted a total of 33 innings. 

  • L. Frank Baum, the author of the Wizard of Oz, lived in Chittenago.  The city now has a yellow brick road and many other Oz-themed businesses, including an annual Munchkin parade. 

  • Niagara Reservation became the first state park in the U.S. 

  • The world’s smallest church, only 3.5X6 feet, is located in Oneida. 

  • The Genesee River is one of the few rivers in the world to flow south to north. 

  • Arthur Eldred became the first Eagle Scout in May 1912, in Oceanside.
  • The first women's rights convention met at Seneca Falls in 1848.

  • New York has the most extensive public library facilities in the United States, including the New York Public Library, one of the nation's largest.

  • In 1971 the bloodiest prison rebellion in U.S. history resulted in the deaths of 43 people at the Attica State Correctional Facility.