Canaan is a town in Columbia County, New York, United States. The population was 1,710 at the 2010 census. The town is in the northeast part of the county.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 36.9 square miles (95.7 km), of which 36.7 square miles (95.0 km) is land and 0.27 square miles (0.7 km), or 0.76%, is water. The majority of the town drains westward or northward via tributaries of Kinderhook Creek to the Hudson River, notably Queechy Lake Brook and Buttercup Creek, both of which flow into the Stony Kill. The southeast corner of the town drains via Flat Brook into the Williams River in Massachusetts and thence to the Housatonic River, which flows south into Connecticut.
The east town line is the border of Massachusetts.
Interstate 90 passes through the town, connecting the Massachusetts Turnpike to the east with the New York State Thruway to the west. I-90 has one interchange in the town, with New York State Route 22.
The Taconic Mountains rise in the northeast corner of the town.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,820 people, 643 households, and 414 families residing in the town. The population density was 49.6 people per square mile (19.1/km²). There were 970 housing units at an average density of 26.4 per square mile (10.2/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 87.80% White, 8.63% African American, 0.33% Native American, 0.66% Asian, 1.21% from other races, and 1.37% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.25% of the population.
There were 643 households out of which 27.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.5% were married couples living together, 5.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.5% were non-families. 28.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34 and the average family size was 2.88.
In the town, the population was spread out with 34.2% under the age of 18, 4.3% from 18 to 24, 20.9% from 25 to 44, 26.5% from 45 to 64, and 14.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 137.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 103.2 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $51,607, and the median income for a family was $62,656. Males had a median income of $44,063 versus $37,083 for females. The per capita income for the town was $28,209. About 2.7% of families and 5.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.1% of those under age 18 and 5.4% of those age 65 or over.