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Orange County, New York

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Orange County was officially established on November 1, 1683, when the Province of New York was divided into twelve counties. Each of these was named to honor a member of the British royal family, and Orange County took its name from the Prince of Orange, who subsequently became King William III of England.

The first European settlers in the area of the present-day county arrived in 1685. They were a party of around twenty-five families from Scotland, led by David Toshach, the Laird of Monzievaird, and his brother-in-law Major Patrick McGregor, a former officer of the French Army. They settled in the Hudson Highlands at the place where the Moodna Creek enters the Hudson River, now known as New Windsor. In 1709, a group of German Palatine refugees settled at Newburgh. They were Protestants from a part of Germany along the Rhine that had suffered during the religious wars. Queen Anne's government arranged for passage from England of nearly 3,000 Palatines in ten ships. Many were settled along the Hudson River in work camps on property belonging to Robert Livingston. A group of Dutch and English settlers arrived at Goshen in 1712. Additional immigrants came from Ireland; they were of Scots and English descent who had been settled as planters there.

During the American Revolutionary War the county was a hotbed of Loyalist and anti-Patriot activity. Claudius Smith was a Loyalist marauder whose team robbed and terrorized citizens; he was hanged in Goshen in 1779 for allegedly robbing and killing Major Nathaniel Strong; two of his sons were also executed for similar crimes. The Mathews family of Blooming Grove were active Loyalists; Fletcher Mathews was a sympathizer and sometime associate of Smith, and his brother David Mathews was Mayor of New York City during its British occupation for the entirety of the war.

The county is home to The United States Military Academy (USMA), also known as West Point, America's oldest winery, Brotherhood Winery, in Washingtonville; the birthplace of Velveeta Cheese, in Monroe and The Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame, in Goshen.

Adjacent Counties

Cities & Towns

  • Blooming Grove
  • Chester
  • Cornwall
  • Crawford
  • Deerpark
  • Goshen (County Seat)
  • Greenville
  • Hamptonburgh
  • Highlands
  • Middletown
  • Minisink
  • Montgomery
  • Mount Hope
  • New Windsor
  • Newburgh
  • Palm Tree
  • Port Jervis
  • Tuxedo
  • Wallkill
  • Warwick
  • Wawayanda
  • Woodbury

For a complete list of Villages, Hamlets and Communities, please see Wikipedia.

Links

Wikipedia

Nat'l Reg. of Hist. Places