Watertown is a city in the U.S. state of New York and the county seat of Jefferson County. It is situated approximately 25 miles (40 km) south of the Thousand Islands, and along the Black River about 5 miles (8.0 km) east of its mouth at Lake Ontario. It lies 180 miles (290 km) northwest of Albany, the state capital, and 328 miles (530 km) northwest of New York City. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 27,023, an increase of 1.2% since 2000. The U.S. Army post Fort Drum is near the city.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 9.3 square miles (24 km), of which 9.0 square miles (23 km) are land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km) (3.45%) are water.
The Black River flows westward through the city toward Lake Ontario. The Black River is a world-renowned kayaking destination. Competition-level kayaking events, such as the Blackwater Challenge, have been held on the river.
By tradition, the city’s name was derived from the abundant water power available from the river. Businesses harnessed water power to create one of the early industrial centers in New York, beginning with paper mills processing lumber.
Thompson Park, a creation of John Charles Olmsted, is located with entrances off Park Circle, Gotham Street, and Franklin Street.
Jefferson Community College (JCC) is located in the western part of the city near the county fairgrounds.
As of the census of 2000, there were 26,705 people, 11,036 households, and 6,500 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,981.3 per square mile (1,150.8/km²). There were 12,450 housing units at an average density of 1,389.9 per square mile (536.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 89.13% White, 4.95% Black or African American, 0.54% Native American, 1.16% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, 1.67% from other races, and 2.45% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.59% of the population. In 2009, the population was estimated at 27,489.
There were 11,036 households out of which 31.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.7% were married couples living together, 14.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.1% were non-families. 34.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.32 and the average family size was 2.99.
In the city, the population was spread out with 25.9% under the age of 18, 10.4% from 18 to 24, 29.6% from 25 to 44, 18.5% from 45 to 64, and 15.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.1 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $28,429, and the median income for a family was $36,115. Males had a median income of $31,068 versus $21,294 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,354. About 14.4% of families and 19.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.2% of those under age 18 and 11.8% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2010 US Census, there were 27,023 people residing in the city. The racial makeup of the village was 86.25% White, 6.04% African American, 0.58% Native American, 1.83% Asian, 0.18% Pacific Islander, 1.33% from other races, and 3.79% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.59% of the population.