Keene is a town in central Essex County, New York, United States. It includes the hamlets of Keene, Keene Valley, and St. Huberts, with a total population of 1,105 as of the 2010 census.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 156.6 square miles (405.6 km), of which 155.9 square miles (403.9 km) is land and 0.69 square miles (1.8 km), or 0.43%, is water.
Many of the High Peaks of the Adirondack Park are in or near the town, including Mount Marcy, elevation 5,343 feet (1,629 m), the highest point in New York. The Garden, one of the most popular trailheads in the Adirondacks, is located in the hamlet of Keene Valley and is the eastern end of the Johns Brook Trail, leading to Johns Brook Lodge, Mount Marcy, and the heart of the High Peaks Region.
The Lower Ausable Lake and the northern half of the Upper Ausable Lake are in the town of Keene. The East Branch of the Ausable River flows north out of the Lower Ausable Lake and passes through the hamlets of St. Huberts, Keene Valley and Keene before entering the Town of Jay. The Hull’s Falls cascade near Keene is a local scenic site.
New York State Route 9N changes from north-south to east-west south of Keene hamlet, at the foot of Spruce Hill. New York State Route 73 changes from east-west to north-south just north of the hamlet of Keene.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,063 people, 443 households, and 279 families residing in the town. The population density was 6.8 people per square mile (2.6/km). There were 984 housing units at an average density of 6.3 per square mile (2.4/km). The racial makeup of the town was 98.68% White, 0.09% African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.47% Asian, 0.09% from other races, and 0.47% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.38% of the population.
There were 443 households out of which 29.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.0% were married couples living together, 6.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.0% were non-families. 31.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.90.
In the town, the population was spread out with 21.8% under the age of 18, 5.9% from 18 to 24, 22.3% from 25 to 44, 30.4% from 45 to 64, and 19.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 45 years. For every 100 females, there were 85.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.1 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $34,226, and the median income for a family was $44,250. Males had a median income of $35,417 versus $22,083 for females. The per capita income for the town was $17,037. About 1.4% of families and 4.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including none of those under age 18 and 5.1% of those age 65 or over.