Portland, New York

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Portland is a town in Chautauqua County, New York, United States. The population was 5,502 at the 2000 census.

The Town of Portland is on the shore of Lake Erie west of the City of Dunkirk.



The region was first settled in 1804. The Town of Portland was founded in 1813 from the Town of Chautauqua. Subsequently, the town was reduced in size to form two new towns: Ripley (1816) and Westfield (1829).

A genealogical history of Portland, New York was published in 1873 by Dr. H. C. Taylor titled "Historical Sketches of the Town of Portland, New York". An all names index was created for this book by Agnes Lee Mitchell in 1989 and published by the Chautauqua County Genealogical Society.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 34.3 square miles (88.8 km²), of which, 34.3 square miles (88.7 km²) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km²) of it (0.09%) is water.

The New York State Thruway (Interstate 90) and US 20 cross the northern part of the town. NY 5 parallels the shore of Lake Erie.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 5,502 people, 1,655 households, and 1,161 families residing in the town. The population density was 160.6 people per square mile (62.0/km²). There were 2,096 housing units at an average density of 61.2/sq mi (23.6/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 82.93% White, 12.05% African American, 0.49% Native American, 0.02% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 3.51% from other races, and 0.98% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.62% of the population.

There were 1,655 households out of which 33.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.8% were married couples living together, 9.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.8% were non-families. 25.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.0% 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 3.08.

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