Oneida County is a county located in the state of New York, in the United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 234,878. The county seat is Utica. The name is in honor of the Oneida, one of the Five Nations of the Iroquois League or Haudenosaunee, which had long occupied this territory at the time of European encounter and colonization. The federally recognized Oneida Indian Nation has had a reservation in the region since the late 18th century, after the American Revolutionary War.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,258 square miles (3,260 km), of which 1,212 square miles (3,140 km) is land and 45 square miles (120 km) (3.6%) is water.
Oneida County is in the central portion of New York State, east of Syracuse, and west of Albany. Oneida Lake is on the northwestern corner of the county, and the Adirondack Park is on the northeast. Part of the Tug Hill Plateau is in the northern part of the county. Oneida County’s highest point lies neither on the plateau nor in the Adirondack Park, but in the county’s southern extremity. The peak’s name is Tassel Hill. It is located slightly southeast of Hardscrabble Road (Tassel Hill Road), between the villages of Waterville and Cassville.
The Erie Canal, completed in 1825, runs east-west along the Mohawk River through the county. It stimulated considerable trade and settlement. Oneida Lake and Oneida Creek form part of the western boundary.
In the early 21st century, Oneida is the only county in New York state documented as having Chronic wasting disease among its wild White-tailed deer.
As of the census of 2000, there were 235,469 people, 90,496 households, and 59,184 families residing in the county. The population density was 194 people per square mile (75/km²). There were 102,803 housing units at an average density of 85 per square mile (33/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 90.21% White, 5.74% African American, 0.23% Native American, 1.16% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 1.11% from other races, and 1.52% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.20% of the population.
21.7% were of Italian, 13.1% Irish, 12.1% German, 9.9% Polish, 8.5% English and 5.6% American ancestry according to self-identification of ethnic background in Census 2000. 90.6% spoke English, 2.7% Spanish, 1.3% Italian, 1.2% Serbo-Croatian and 1.1% Polish as their first language.
There were 90,496 households out of which 30.40% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.10% were married couples living together, 12.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.60% were non-families. 29.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 3.02.
In the county, the population was spread out with 23.90% under the age of 18, 8.60% from 18 to 24, 28.20% from 25 to 44, 22.90% from 45 to 64, and 16.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 98.60 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.30 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $35,909, and the median income for a family was $45,341. Males had a median income of $32,194 versus $24,295 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,516. About 9.80% of families and 13.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.90% of those under age 18 and 8.50% of those age 65 or over.