Get to know Troy, NY

The city of Troy lies on the Hudson River, forming the Capital District with nearby Albany and Schenectady.  Originally settled by the Mohican tribe, the Dutch bought the land between 1630 and 1657 before the English acquired the whole state of New York in 1664.  The city was named Troy in 1789 after the residents voted to name it after the famous city from Homer’s Iliad.  Prior to this vote, the area had been called Ashley’s Ferry.  Troy was incorporated as a town in 1791, a village in 1801, and finally a city in 1816.  The city was a part of the stage of the War of 1812.  The city claims a local butcher named Samuel Wilson who supplied the military during this time gave rise to the “Uncle Sam” personification of the United States.  In 1824 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) was founded and became one of the country’s most prestigious engineering schools.  The city prospered throughout the 19th and into the 20th centuries as a transshipping hub and industrial center.   As the iron and steel industries moved west, Troy’s prosperity dwindled.  The passage of Prohibition made the city a way station for the illegal alcohol trade from Canada to New York City.  The city gained a colorful reputation through the Second World War for its speakeasies, brothels, and gangster activity.  The loss of manufacturing and the subsequent decline in population throughout the 20th century led to disinvestment in Troy.  However recent years have seen a campaign to Redevelop the city.  RPI is the city’s largest employer and has helped to develop a small tech sector in Troy.  Popular events include the annual Troy Flag Day Parade in early June and the Uncle Sam Parade.

Quick Facts

Population: 49,933

Median Household Income: $38,954

Median Property Value: $143,800

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