|This article needs additional citations for verification. (September 2012)|
|Total||17.4 sq mi (45.0 km2)|
|Land||16.8 sq mi (43.6 km2)|
|Water||0.6 sq mi (1.5 km2)|
|Elevation||69 ft (21 m)|
|Density||1,600/sq mi (610/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|Summer (DST)||Eastern (EDT) (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||0977345|
Harrison was established in 1696 by John Harrison, who was given 24 hours to ride his horse around an area which would become his, to fill an owe the King had to him. Because Harrison had to travel by horse the town contains no waterways that could not be forded on horseback. The town gets its name from Mr. Harrison, and was incorporated as a town on March 7, 1788, by an act of the New York State legislature.
Merritt's Hill in West Harrison was the site of the Battle of White Plains during the Revolutionary War. Regiment 182 of the Continental Army, of the 367 regiments there, was the Harrison Regiment, composed solely of people from Harrison.
During the 1830s, David Haviland settled in Harrison where he produced Haviland China which he sold in his store in New York City before returning to his native France. Today there exists a Haviland Street in a neighborhood of Harrison known as "South Downtown", whose only street marker looks rather quite older than the rest in the town, composed of wrought iron in scrolled shapes.
In 1867 Benjamin Holladay purchased the land that is now Manhattanville College in Purchase. On the property is a Norman-style Roman Catholic chapel built for his wife. There is also Reid Castle, once called the Ophir House, before being renamed for a later purchaser. The castle hosted the King and Queen of Siam in the early 1930s.
What is now the Metro-North Railroad, running from Manhattan, New York City, to Greenwich, Connecticut, first came through Harrison in 1848, though the first station was not built until 1870. Before that time, Harrisonites had to flag down the train to get a ride. Harrison remained generally free of factories through the Industrial Revolution, while large factory districts grew in the neighboring towns of White Plains, Port Chester and Mamaroneck.
In 1929, the Hutchinson River Parkway was extended to Harrison.
In 1967, 200 residents stated support for a plan to incorporate Purchase, a community in Harrison so that corporations could not build in the community. In response, officials from the Town of Harrison put forward plans to try to become a city to try to stop Purchase from seceding from Harrison.
John A. Passidomo (1921 2005) was first elected Mayor in 1965 by only 67 votes. Re-elected eight times, he served until 1983 when he resigned to become Commissioner of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles. In his two and a half years at that job, he helped pass one of the nation's first seat-belt laws despite the law's unpopularity.
Harrison's "Platinum Mile", a string of corporate office parks along I-287 in the Purchase section of Harrison, developed under Passidomo. The mayor played an instrumental role in attracting large corporations such as PepsiCo, MasterCard and Texaco.
In the early 1970s under Passidomo's supervisorship, a group in the Purchase section of town, concerned about the town's overdevelopment, attempted to incorporate as a village and thereby separate from the town of Harrison. Creatively, to avoid being served papers that would have begun the legal proceedings for Purchase to incorporate as a village, Passidomo entered his office through the fire escape. He then immediately made sure that the town Harrison became a village but remained as a town to end to the possibility of Purchase's secession, since a village cannot legally be formed in another village.
The list begins at 1965, however there were mayors before that.
Harrison is a town and village in Westchester County, New York, approximately 22 miles (35 km) northeast of Manhattan, New York City. According to the United States Census Bureau, the town (and coterminous village) has a total area of 17.4 square miles (45 km2), of which 16.8 square miles (44 km2) is land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km2), or 3.22%, is water. The population was 27,472 at the 2010 census.
Harrison is bordered by North Castle, White Plains, Rye town, Rye city, Mamaroneck, and Scarsdale. The New England Thruway (I-95) runs through the town (without any interchanges), as well as the Cross Westchester Expressway and the Hutchinson River Parkway. I-684 passes through Harrison and ends at the Cross Westchester Expressway and the Hutchinson Parkway.
|Climate data for Harrison, New York|
|Average high °F (°C)||35 |
|Average low °F (°C)||21 |
|Precipitation inches (mm)||3.78 |
|Source: The Weather Channel|
At the 2000 census, there were 24,154 people, 8,394 households and 6,186 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,435.2 per square mile (554.1/km2). There were 8,680 housing units at an average density of 515.8 per square mile (199.1/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 89.78% White, 1.43% Black or African American, 0.09% Native American, 5.44% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 1.59% from other races, and 1.67% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.70% of the population.
Harrison is also known for its large Italian American population.
There were 8,394 households of which 35.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.4% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.3% were non-families. 22.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.72 and the average family size was 3.20.
24.5% of residents were under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 29.4% from 25 to 44, 21.9% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 89.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.2 males.
According to a 2009 estimate, the median household income was $104,640, and the median family income was $130,224. Purchase is the main reason for the median household income being so high. The per capita income for the village was $63,742. About 4.2% of families and 5.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.3% of those under age 18 and 7.8% of those age 65 or over.
The boundaries of the town of Harrison are the approximate shape of a figure-eight. The southern half is known as simply Harrison, or downtown, while the hamlet of Purchase is located in the northern portion of the town. "West Harrison" is a neighborhood south of Purchase, further west, bounded by Silver Lake, the Brae Burn Golf Course, and I-287. The "downtown" southern half of Harrison is divided into four general areas: The Brentwood, Sunnyridge, Sterling Ridge/The Trails, and South Downtown.
West Harrison is an isolated community, lodged between a tall hill bordered by a lake, Interstate 287, a tall relatively steep hill, and a cliff at the northern edge. Because of this, there is a general lack of street entrances. There is really only one road into it, although there are a few other "back" ways into it. The road is called Lake Street, flanked on one side by Silver Lake Park, bordering the lake, and by a small business district on the other side of the street. West Harrison contains the Passidomo Veterans Memorial Park and Pool and the Leo Mintzer Center. West Harrison also contains the site of the Battle of White Plains from the Revolutionary War. Silver Lake is also the home of Buckout Road, which was said to have been a home of witches, albinos, and slaughters.
Purchase is a more secluded area of Harrison, with winding roads and deep woods. The houses are larger, in often cases whole swatches of land developed in the late twentieth century, and early 2000s, comparing to the age of the rest of the town.
Downtown is split into the four sections mentioned above, and is flanked by Interstate 95, the Hutchinson River Parkway, and the Metro-North Railroad. The manmade lines create isolation to areas, with few areas to cross each. Harrison's only middle school and only High School, Harrison High School, are located in the "downtown" area. The four areas of downtown, as separated by the boundaries of Interstate 95 and the railroad tracks as well as separated by wealth gaps, are very diverse. Despite its name, "Downtown" is not in any sense a business district, it is much rather a residential enclave, featuring houses of every wealth level.
Harrison Central School District operates four public elementary schools. Purchase School serves Purchase, Preston School serves West Harrison, and Parsons School serves South Downtown. The fourth school, Harrison Avenue School, serves the remaining area of "Downtown", Sunnyridge, Sterling Ridge/The Trails, and The Brentwood.
The State University of New York at Purchase and Manhattanville College are located in Purchase. In 2008, Fordham University opened its Westchester campus in West Harrison on 32 landscaped acres with a stream and pond.
Places of worship in Harrison include:
Harrison is protected by two all-volunteer and one combination fire districts. The Harrison Fire Department being the combination department, the West Harrison Fire Department, and the Purchase Fire Department being all volunteer. The total fire apparatus amount in the town/village is; three trucks, ten engines, three rescues, and many other special units. The City of Rye Fire Department also protects a part of Harrison between Interstate 287 and Westchester County Club. The RFD is also a combination department. Altogether, there are 4 fire department that protect Harrison.
There are several cemeteries in the downtown, including many small family plots dating back to the 17th century and before. Greenwood Union Cemetery is a cemetery shared by the city of Rye.
There is also the Small Roman Catholic Cemetery dating back to when Harrison was first discovered in the 17th century. It is located right on the border of Rye and Harrison. This was a domain for Indian burials.
The Westchester Country Club, Willow Ridge Country Club, and Apawamis Golf Club are all located in Harrison. All three of them are next to each other in the southern half ("downtown") portion of the town. A portion of Apawamis, including its entrance is located in Rye, New York.
These include the MasterCard headquarters, MasterCard International Global Headquarters, and Pepsico. Atlas Air and subsidiary Polar Air Cargo have their headquarters in Purchase. Texaco's headquarters, a 750,000-square-foot (70,000 m2) building, was in Harrison. In 2002, after Chevron and Texaco merged, Chevron sold the former Texaco headquarters to Morgan Stanley. Morgan Stanley bought the building and the surrounding 107 acres (0.43 km2) for $42 million. Previously, Lenovo had its U.S. headquarters in Purchase. In 2006, the company announced it was moving to Morrisville, North Carolina.