Yorktown is primarily a suburban community with a predominantly residential character. Within the Town of Yorktown are five hamlet areas - Yorktown Heights, Shrub Oak, Jefferson Valley, Crompond and Mohegan Lake. The Town's major industry is IBM, which has two laboratories within the Town. Smaller industrial businesses are situated in industrial parks located in various parts of Yorktown.
Mohegan, Osceola, Amawalk, Kitchawan and Mohansic are all Native American Tribes that sound familiar because they are names of local places. It helps to remind the present-day residents that the Indians were the earliest people we have knowledge of in Yorktown.
When the railroad was built in 1881, business began to concentrate at the railroad plaza. Local farmers began shipping their milk by rail. The post office near the station was first called Underhill, later Yorktown Station and finally Yorktown Heights. Crompond Corners, where Old Yorktown Road meets Route 202, was the business center of town from colonial days until the railroad was built. The corner looks today something as it did in the 19th century. The Presbyterian Church is on one corner, and the house on the other side of the road was an inn. Buildings across the street on Route 202 housed the post office, tannery, slaughter house and cobbler shop. There was a large house where the Yorktown Civil War recruits drilled. Their guns and supplies were stored in the barn that is still standing on the site.
New York City was growing too in the 19th century and needed a large water supply. Residents of Westchester fought a proposal to dam the Croton River, but despite their objections the dam was built. By June of 1842, New York City was celebrating the arrival of water from the 400 acre Croton Reservoir. The original dam and pump house are still partly visible when the reservoir is very low. In the early 1900’s, The Taconic Parkway was built and Mohansic Park was developed, further changing the character of Yorktown.
The Mohansic Golf Course is a county facility that is open for golfers from mid April until mid December. For the remainder of the late fall, winter and early spring, it is available for walking and cross-country skiing. The county-owned land extends far to the west beyond the cleared area for the golf course.
Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park's spacious picnic areas accommodate hundreds of people who visit the park daily. People of all ages also enjoy the park's oasis of blue water amid the green of the countryside. Swimming is provided in a mammoth pool that will accommodate several thousand people at one time. Mohansic Lake and Crom Pond provide excellent fishing and boating.
Teatown Lake Reservation is a private, nonprofit nature preserve of 730 acres and education center with over 14 miles of hiking trails. Turkey Mountain is located off of Route 118 and was preserved through the efforts of concerned citizens who recognized its value. The 125 acre preserve, owned by the Town of Yorktown, offers summit views at 831 feet to the Croton Reservoir and dam; the Hudson River; the New York City skyline to the south; Bear Mountain, across the Hudson; the Hudson Highlands; and on a clear day, the ridge of the Shawangunks.
The Town of Yorktown is served by four excellent school districts; the Yorktown Central School District, the Croton-Harmon School District, the Ossining Union Free School District, and the Lakeland Central School District.
The Yorktown School District encompasses a large central part of the Town of Yorktown and small sections of Cortlandt and New Castle. The district includes two, grade K-3 elementary schools; one, grade 4-5 elementary school; one, grade 6-8 middle school; and one grade 9-12 high school.
The Croton-Harmon School District encompasses the southwestern parts of the town of Yorktown and includes parts of the towns of Cortlandt, Ossining and includes the village of Croton-on-Hudson. The district population is approximately 15,000 with some 1,700 students attending Croton schools this year. The district includes one, grade K-4 elementary school; one, grade 5-8 middle school; and one, grade 9-12 high school.
The Ossining Union Free School District encompasses southern parts of the town of Yorktown, and the towns of New Castle, Briarcliff Manor, Ossining, and the Village of Ossining. The district includes the Park Early childhood center, which houses three programs – First Steps for Ossining families with children ages 0 to 4, Pre-Kindergarten for four year-olds and Kindergarten; one, grade 1-2 elementary school; one, grade 3-4 elementary school; one, grade 5 elementary school; one, grade 6-8 middle school; and one, grade 9-12 high school.
Lakeland Central School District is a suburban school district located in the Northwest corner of Westchester County and includes parts of six towns: Yorktown, Cortlandt, and Somers in Westchester County; Carmel, Philipstown, and Putnam Valley in Putnam County. The district population was 6,323 in October 2009. Lakeland includes five, grade K-5 elementary schools; one, grade 6-8 middle school; and two grade 9-12 high schools as well as the Lakeland Alternative High School.
Town of Yorktown: http://www.yorktownny.org
Corton-Harmon School District: http://www.croton-harmonschools.org/
Ossining Union Free School District: http://www.ossiningufsd.org
Yorktown Central School District: http://www.yorktown.org
Lakeland Central School District: http://www.lakelandschools.org/