Sterling, New York

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Sterling is a town in Cayuga County, New York, United States. The population was 3,432 at the 2000 census.[1] The town is named after "Lord Stirling", a general of the Revolutionary War.[citation needed] Sterling is the most northerly town in the county. It lies northwest of Syracuse, New York.



The region was part of the Central New York Military Tract used to pay soldiers of the American Revolution. The first settler, Pierre Dumas or Peter DeMass, arrived in 1805.

Sterling was formed in 1812 from the town of Cato.

Improvements made to Little Sodus Bay in the early 19th Century, allowed the town to have port facilities. As the use of the port declined, the town developed as a vacation and recreation location. The Sterling Renaissance Festival held during the summer, for almost thirty years, adds to the tourism of the town.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 47.1 square miles (122.1 km²), of which, 45.7 square miles (118.2 km²) of it is land and 1.5 square miles (3.9 km²) of it (3.16%) is water.

The north boundary of Sterling is Lake Ontario, one of the Great Lakes. Sterling is the only town in the county with access to the Great Lakes.

The western terminus of New York State Route 3 and northern terminus of New York State Route 38 are in the town. New York State Route 104 passes across the south part of Sterling, and New York State Route 104A passes across the north.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 3,432 people, 1,337 households, and 962 families residing in the town. The population density was 75.2 people per square mile (29.0/km²). There were 1,922 housing units at an average density of 42.1/sq mi (16.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.46% White, 0.09% African American, 0.44% Native American, 0.06% Asian, 0.23% from other races, and 0.73% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.50% of the population.

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