Panama, New York

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Panama is a village in Chautauqua County, New York, United States. The population was 491 at the 2000 census. The village is named after a large rock formation south of the village, called Panama Rocks. This site has become a tourist attraction, and the owners charge admission at the gate.

The Village of Panama is in the northwest part of the Town of Harmony, New York. The village is at the junction of Route 474 (Main Street) and Route 33.

The Panama Rocks scenic attraction is south of the village. It has Paleozoic fossils in an outcrop.

Contents

History

The Village of Panama was incorporated in 1861.

Among many early setlers was George Hawkins purchsed lot 50 in 1825. He was born in 1802, Oneida County, New York. About 1827 he married Rhoda Powers. She was born 1806. Together they cleared land to make a living. George died in 1883 and Rhoda in 1900. Rhoda's father was Simeon Powers who established a Baptist church in the area. George's parents are unknown. Both are buried in Panama Union cemetery, Panama New York under one headstone.

The U.S. Post Office at Panama was established in 1826. This was the first, officially recorded, use of the name "Panama". The traditional story that Panama got its name from had been across the Isthmus of Panama, and said local rock formations reminded him of Panama's rocks. It is possible that this person was Mr. Moses Cushman Marsh, who operated a trading company in Panama, and was Panama's first postmaster. He had previously had a business in Cuba, and he may have been across the Isthmus of Panama.

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 2.2 square miles (5.7 km²), of which, 2.2 square miles (5.6 km²) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km²) of it (0.91%) is water.

Demographics

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 491 people, 191 households, and 135 families residing in the village. The population density was 226.4 people per square mile (87.4/km²). There were 208 housing units at an average density of 95.9/sq mi (37.0/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 96.74% White, 1.02% African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.20% Asian, 0.41% from other races, and 1.43% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.61% of the population.

There were 191 households out of which 31.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.3% were married couples living together, 7.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.3% were non-families. 22.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.07.

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