In 1524 the first European, an Italian named Di Verrazzano, explored the New York Harbor. Although Di Verrazzano was the first explorer to visit New York City, it is Dutch explorer Henry Hudson who is credited with bringing Europe to the “Big Apple.” Hudson received funding from the Dutch East India Company to explore the world in 1609. Within the next 20 years, many Dutch settled in New York City and called it New Amsterdam. Many immigrants to the new world saw New York City as a place for religious freedom.
Visit the U.S. Census Website for an array of demographic information.
U.S. Census information
Your link for the official New York City Website.