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Today’s New York counties did not always exist in the present form. They went through many different changes in the space of a few short years.
New York Colonial Counties
The Province of New York was a British Colony and later a Royal Colony from 1664 to 1776.
The original twelve counties were created immediately after the British takeover of the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam, although two of these counties have since been abolished.
On November 1, 1683, the Province of New York was divided into 12 counties (2 of those counties claimed land beyond the present boundaries of New York State).
Those 10 counties were Suffolk County, New York County, Kings County, Richmond County, Queens County, Westchester County, Duchess County, Orange County, Ulster County and Albany County. Dukes County and Cornwall County later became part of Massachusetts.
The State of New York entered the union as the 11th state on July 26, 1788.
New York Counties Today
Fun Facts about New York Counties
Counties by Year
- Suffolk, New York, Kings, Richmond, Queens, Westchester, Duchess, Orange, Ulster, Albany, Dukes (now in MA) and Cornwall (now in MA) Counties was the original 12 counties created on November 1, 1683.
- Bronx County was the last county created in 1914.
County Size Facts
- St. Lawrence County (2,821 sq mi) is the largest county in New York.
- New York County (34 sq mi) is the smallest county in New York.
County Population Facts
- Hamilton County (4,836) is the least populated county in New York.
- Kings County (2,504,700) is the most populated county in New York.
New York City Facts
New York’s 10 largest cities (2010) are:
- New York City (8,175,133) is in Bronx County, Kings County, New York County, Queens County and Richmond County
- Buffalo (261,310) is in Erie County
- Rochester (210,565) is in Monroe County
- Yonkers (195,976) is in Westchester County
- Syracuse (145,170) is in Onondaga County
- Albany (97,856) is in Albany County
- New Rochelle (77,062) is in Westchester County
- Mount Vernon (67,292) is in Westchester County
- Schenectady (66,135) is in Schenectady County
- Utica (62,235) is in Oneida County
Boundary Changes of New York Counties from 1683-1915
This Interactive Map of New York Counties show the historical boundaries, names, organization, and attachments of every county, extinct county and unsuccessful county proposal from 1683 to 1915.
List of New York Counties
|State||County||Created||Created From||Named For||County Seat||Disbanded / Renamed||Notes|
List of Old Former / Extinct New York Counties
New York contains some counties that no longer exist because they were discontinued, renamed or merged with another county. These are important for genealogy research purposes.
The below counties formerly within the area of the State of New York no longer exist:
- Charlotte County: Formed in 1772 from Albany County, Renamed in 1784 to Washington County
- Cornwall County: Formed in 1683, Located in Maine, this county became part of Massachusetts in 1686, but no longer exist in name.
- Cumberland County: Formed in 1766 from Albany County, disallowed the year after it was formed, Cumberland was re-established in 1768 and ceased to exist 1777-78 when Vermont declared itself a republic.
- Dukes County: Formed in 1683, became part of Massachusetts in 1692
- Gloucester County: Formed in 1770 from Cumberland County, ceased to exist 1777-78 when Vermont declared itself a republic.
- Tryon County: Formed in 1772 from Albany County, Renamed in 1784 to Montgomery County
COUNTY County, New York
Created on DATE from LAND. COUNTY County was renamed to COUNTY County on November 7, 1907.