Katonah is a hamlet and census-designated place (CDP) within the town of Bedford, Westchester County, in the U.S. state of New York, specifically northern Westchester. The Katonah CDP had a population of 1,679 at the 2010 census.
Katonah is named for Chief Katonah, an American Indian from whom the land of Bedford was purchased by a group of English colonists. Founded with the name Whitlockville, the town changed its name, and later was moved to its present site in 1897, when its former site (Old Katonah) was flooded by the construction of the New Croton Dam, which raised the water level behind it enough to submerge the existing Muscoot Dam and also to submerge the town under the resultantly expanded Muscoot Reservoir. More than 50 buildings were moved from the old site to New Katonah, rolled on logs pulled by horses. The move was originally ordered to start in 1894, but litigation delayed the process by almost three years.
Eleven-year-old child named B. Robertson wrote the following to a children's magazine on March 2, 1897:
The people of Katonah do not want to have it thought that New York city has made them move because they are careless about their drainage. It is because the city is going to make a new reservoir where the old village of Katonah now stands. Katonah has three churches, a public library and reading-room, a village improvement association, and a graded school, and was proud of itself.
Katonah was not the only village affected by New York City's growing demand for water. The villages of Kirbyville and New Castle Corners were also condemned by the city but were never moved.
During the American Revolution military battles or skirmishes did not take place in the area that is now the Village of Katonah. However, most local men joined the Continental side, with some joining the New York 4th Regiment of the Line and most joining the local Militia.