Henry Livingston, Jr.

Henry Livingston's Cousins

Grandparent's Generation
Robert 'The Nephew' Livingston1Margaretta Schuyler
Parent's Generation
Signer Philip Livingston1Christiana Ten Broeck
Governor William Livingston1Susannah French
Col. Robert Livingston,1
3rd Lord
Mary Thong
Maj.Gen. William Alexander,
Lord Stirling
Sarah Livingston1
Peter Van Brugh Livingston1Mary Alexander1
Henry's Generation
John MooreJudith Newcomb Livingston1
John ReadeCatharine Livingston1
Dr. Baltus Van Kleeck
Major Andrew Billings
Cornelia Livingston1
Yale President Timothy DwightMary Woolsey1
John Jay3Sarah Livingston2
Chancellor Robert R. Livingston2Elizabeth Stevens
Mayor Edward Livingston2Mary McEvers
General Richard MontgomeryJanet Livingston2
General Philip John Schuyler2Catharine Van Rensselaer3
Alexander HamiltonElizabeth Schuyler3
James DuaneMary Livingston1-3x
Older Than Henry's Children
Lt. Gov. Stephen Van Rensselaer1Margaret Schuyler3
Mayor Philip Schuyler Van Rensselaer3Anne De Peyster Van Cortlandt1
Brig.Gen. Philip Van Cortlandt1
Superscripts show the Degree of Cousin Relationships

Robert 'The Nephew' Livingston1 and Margaretta Schuyler
Son of James, the older brother of Robert Livingston, 1st Lord
Robert 'The Nephew' Livingston1
(21 APR 1725)
+ Margaretta Schuyler
(Nov 1682, NY -)

Angelica (Engeltke) Livingston [married Johannes Van Rensselaer]
James Livingston [married Maria Kierstede]
Janet Livingston [married Colonel Henry Beekman]
John Livingston [married Catherine Ten Broeck]

Abstracts of Wills Vol I 1665-1707
Page 177.--Marriage license granted to ROBERT LIVINGSTON and MARGARET SCHUYLER, July 26, 1697

Back To Top

Signer Philip Livingston1 and Christiana Ten Broeck
Son of Henry's Granduncle Philip, 2nd Lord,
the older brother of Gilbert Livingston

Father-in-law of Henry's brother John Henry

Philip Livingston
Philip Livingston
Signer Philip Livingston1
(15 Jan 1716, Albany NY)
(12 Jun 1778, York PA)
+ Christiana Ten Broeck14 Apr 1740
(30 Dec 1718, Albany NY)

xx [married xx]

The Declaration of Independence

The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans: Volume VI
LIVINGSTON, Philip, signer, was born in Albany, N.Y., Jan. 15, 1716, son of Philip and Catherine (Van Brugh) Livingston. He was graduated from Yale, A.B., 1737, A.M., 1740, and engaged in business in New York city as a merchant. He was one of the seven aldermen of the city, 1754-63; a member of the provincial assembly, 1763-69 and speaker in 1768; a member of the committee of correspondence; a delegate to the stamp-act congress in October, 1765; a delegate to the Continental congress, 1774-78, and at the first convention of that body he was one of the committee appointed to prepare an address to the People of Great Britain. He was one of the four delegates from New York who signed the Declaration of Independence. It was at his residence [p.458] on Brooklyn Heights, N.Y., that Washington held the council of war that decided on the retreat from Long Island in 1776. He was a member of the state assembly and in May, 1777, was chosen state senator. He was one of the founders of the New York Society library in 1754; of the chamber of commerce in 1770; and one of the governors of the New York hospital in 1771. He was prominent in the establishment of King's college, and in 1746 he aided in founding the Livingston professorship of divinity at Yale. He was married to Christina, daughter of Richard Ten Broeck, recorder of Albany. He died while in attendance at the 6th session of the Continental congress, at York, Pa., June 12, 1778.

The Old Merchants of New York, Vol 3, 1864
April, 1768.
"TO BE SOLD BY PHILLIP LIVINGSTON, AT his store in the New Dock, near the Ferry stairs, Irish linens, three-quarter Dowlass printed and pencilled calico, newest pattern of purple and other calicoes, ground chintz, black and colored Persians, cambrics and lawns, diaper table-cloths, striped Hollands, double Silesias, silk, and large towels, black and blue peelong, ballandine, sewing silk of all colors, check of all sorts usually imported, fine black and colored worsted patterns for breeches, tommies, durants, and shakoons, fustians, Turkey stripes, burr dots, silk damascus for summer vests, writing paper by the ream, Russia duck, powder blue, best vermillion, fete hats, bound hats for seamen, brushes of all sorts, whitewash brushes, marble chimney-pieces and squares, marble hearths very beautifully variegated with different colors, double and single refined loaf sugar, lump and Muscovado sugar, tea kettles, also with rivetted spouts, brass kettles for the Indian trade with iron ware suitable for the same, new cable ten and a-half inch ninety fathoms, twenty penny, twenty-four d., and thirty d. nails, the very best harbor twine for fishing nets, seven by nine and six by eight crown window glass, Geneva in cases and in cask, brandy, a parcel of choice spermaceti candles, Comeynekars (cheese) or Leyden cheese, a few barrels of choice beef and pork, choice new rice, coffee in barrels, Jamaica nutmegs by the hogshead, sugar bakers twine, quart bottles in hampers, a complete assortment of buttons, shoe and knee buckles of all sorts, Congo and Bohea tea, snuff boxes, ivory and brass combs, needles, knitting pins, split bone knives and forks, sham buck ditto, brass and steel thimbles, ginger and rape oil in jugs, heart or club steel, fine cordials in cases, and a cargo of choice Teneriffe wine just imported."

Back To Top

Governor William Livingston1 and Susannah French
Son of Henry's Granduncle Philip, 2nd Lord,
the older brother of Gilbert Livingston

Uncle of Henry's sister-in-law Sarah

Governor William Livingston1
(30 Nov 1723, Albany NY)
(25 Jul 1790, Liberty Hall NJ)
+ Susannah French
(of New Brunswick)

William was a close friend and Yale schoolmate of Henry's father-in-law, Rev. Noah Welles. In a group of letters from William to Noah in the Yale Collections, William congratulates Noah on becoming engaged to a virgin rather than to a widow. Virgins, after all, couldn't compare you unfavorably to anyone.

William corresponded with Henry Sr. to ask for help in putting around information on a religious issue about which William was concerned. Being a staunch Calvinist, William didn't want to see a new state college be created with ties to the Episcopalian church.

Dictionary of American Biography VI p. 325
Lawyer, first governor of the state of NJ, grandson of Robert and brother of Philip and Peter Van Brugh Livingston, was in many ways the ablest of the sons of Philip and Catharine (Van Brugh) Livingston. He was born at Albany (baptized December 8, 1723), and spent his childhood there under the indulgent care of his maternal grandmother Sarah Van Brugh. At the age of fourteen he lived for a year with a missionary among the friendly Mohawks, an experience which his family felt would be valuable if the lad turned his attention later to the fur trade or the possibilities of land speculation on the frontier.

The following year he was sent to New Haven to follow the path chosen by his three elder brothers. He graduated from Yale in the class of 1741. While in college he decided that law had a larger claim than mercantile affairs upon his interest. Accordingly, he avoided his brothers' counting houses in New York City and entered the law office of James Alexander, who had been a vigorous champion of the freedom of the press in connection with the Zenger trial.

From the day of his admission to the bar in 1748 Livingston was a leader among those of assured position who liked to be known as supporters of the popular cause. Petulant and impatient of restraint, he soon aroused the resentment of the conservatives by his sweeping criticism of established institutions. Always more facile in writing than in speech, he delighted to compose satirical verse and witty broadsides which earned him a greater reputation as a censor than as a satirist. A young lady of his acquaintance, alluding to his tall, slender, and graceless figure, named him the "whipping post."

His appeals against the union of church and state aroused the noncomformists and strengthened the liberal party, which was rapidly becoming a Livingston faction in provincial politics. The first important victory of the Livingstons at the polls resulted in driving the De Lanceys from their control of the Assembly in 1758.

Never entirely happy in his legal work and temporarily dispirited by the turn of his political fortunes, Livingston determined to retire to his country estate near Elizabethtown, NJ. Years earlier, in his Philosophic Solitude (1747), he had ventured to reveal in verse his longing for the quiet of the countryside. In May 1772 he laid out pretentious grounds, planted an extensive orchard, and erected a mansion known as "Liberty Hall." There he began life anew as a gentleman, but he did not find solitude. The removal to New Jersey was merely a prelude to a career more illustrious than the one just finished in New York politics. Becoming a member of the Essex County Committee of Correspondence, he quickly rose to a position of leadership and was one of the province's delegates to the First Continental Congress. There he served on the committee with his son-in-law, John Jay, and Richard Henry Lee to draft an address to the people of British America. He was returned as a deputy to the Second COntinental Congress, serving until June 5, 1776, when he assumed command of the New Jersey militia. It was a responsibility extremely irksome ot him, yet he discharged his duties with his usual conscientiousness until the legislature under the new constitution elected him first governor of the state. For the next fourteen years he bore the responsibilities of the governorship during the extraordinary conditions of war and reconstruction. The multitudinous duties, civil and military, the threats of the enemy, and the disloyalty of friends harassed his nervous and excitable temper but failed to overcome his spirited support of the patriot cause. Rivington's Royal Gazette dubbed him the "Don Quixote of the Jerseys."

Back To Top

His boundless energy was an incalculable asset during the gloomiest period fo the war. When peace came his messages to the legislature dealt discriminatingly and comprehensively with the problems of reconstruction. He opposed the cheapening of the currency by unrestricted issues of paper money, counseled moderation in dealing with the Loyalists and their property, and looked forward to the day when the question of slavery would be settled on the basis of gradual emancipation. As authority slipped out of the hands of Congress, he called for a revision of the Articles of Confederation, in which he was privileged to participate at the Federal Convention of 1787. Though he was not conspicuous in debate, he ably supported the New Jersey plan and worked for a compromise that would mean success. HIs influence was largely responsible for the alacrity and unanimity with which the state convention ratified the Constitution. Two years later, while he was resting at Elizabethtown, his years of public service came to an end.

Though his life was spent in the excitement of political strife and affairs of state, he longed for the quieter routine of the farmer. After his removal to New Jersey he managed to devote some time to experiments in gardening, becoming an active member of the Philadelphia Society for the Promotion of Agriculture. It was his pleasure to show his friends his vegetables at "Liberty Hall." Among his intimates and in an ever-widening circle of acquaintances he was honored for his high moral courage and his fine sense of social responsibility. The confidential agents of the French government reported to Paris that he was a man who preferred the public good to personal popularity. No better estimate in brief compass remains in the writings of his colleagues than the sketch penned by William Pierce in 1787.

"Governor Livingston," wrote the Georgian, "is confessedly a man of the first rate talents, but he appears to me rather to indulge a sportiveness of wit than a strength of thinking. He is, however, equal to anything, from the extensiveness of his education and genius. His writings teem with satyr and a neatness of style. But he is no Orator, and seems little acquainted with the guiles of policy."

(A body of papers of William Livingston, containing many letters and extensive records of his legal practice, was presented to the Mass. Hist. Soc. by Charles L. Nichols in 1922, and some additional MSS were given to the society in 1923. Theodore Sedgwick, Jr.'s A Memoir of the Life of William Livingston (1833), was written from materials in the possession of Livingston's descendants, but contains numerous inaccuracies. C. H. Levermore "The Whigs of Colonial New York," in Am. Hist. Rev., Jan. 1896, is valuable, and there are important references in C.L. Becker, The History of Political Parties in the Province of NY (1909) and E.B. Livingston, The Livingstons of Livingston Manor (1910) . See also Max Farrand, The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787 (1911); L.Q.C. Elmer, in Colls. N.J. Historical Society, volume VII (1872); F.B. Dexter, Biographical Sketches Grads. Yale College, vol 1 (1885); and M.C. Tyler, The Literary History of the American Revolution (1897), esp. II, 17-20.)

Back To Top

Col. Robert Livingston1 and Mary Thong
Son of Henry's Granduncle Philip, 2nd Lord,
the older brother of Gilbert Livingston

Uncle of Henry's sister-in-law Sarah

Col. Robert Livingston,1
(16 Dec 1708, Albany NY)
(26 Oct 1813, Albany NY)
+ Mary Thong20 May 1731
(3 Jun 1711-30 May 1765)

Peter Robert Livingston [married Margaret Livingston]
Walter Livingston [married Cornelia Schuyler]
John Livingston

+ Gertrude Van Rensselaer [Schuyler]
(1 Oct 1714-)

Robert Livingston, the eldest son, succeeded as 3rd and last Lord of the Manor. He married Maria Thong and had 13 children. Robert inherited Livingston Manor and his father's position as head of the family business. He continued to rely on his brothers as business agents for Livingston Manor, particularly on Peter Van Brugh Livingston in New York.

Robert Livingston 3rd (lord) expected his sons to take their uncle's place as business agents and had them educated accordingly. His eldest son Philip Robert Livingston (1733-1756) died young of kidney trouble. His second son Peter Robert Livingston (1737-1794) married a distant cousin Margaret Livingston (great daughter of a nephew of Robert 'the Nephew' Livingston) and they had 10 children. In a strange succession of events in the Livingston family history, Peter Robert Livingston's elder brother died before their father and thus again a second son was in line for succession as 4th Lord of the Manor.

Yet it would come otherwise Unlike his grandfather and his father, Peter Robert Livingston had similar traits of irresponsibility that already appeared in the characters of his grand-uncles Johannes and Gilbert Livingston earlier. In search of easy money, Peter Robert Livingston took speculative risks most merchants avoided and his illegal ventures caused him irreversible financial losses. His younger brothers Walter Livingston, Robert Cambridge Livingston, John Livingston and Henry Livingston (1753-1823) proved more reliable as Livingston Manor's business agents.

As a result, Robert Livingston 3rd broke the family tradition of leaving the estate to his eldest son and shared Livingston Manor among his five sons. Peter Robert Livingston's share was further restricted by trust obligations in favor of his eldest son. As a result of Robert Livingston 3rd's will and the deaths of three of his sons only a few years after him, Livingston Manor was already divided in numerous parts by the year 1800.

Back To Top

Major General William Alexander, Lord Stirling and Sarah Livingston1
Daughter of Henry's Granduncle Philip, 2nd Lord,
the older brother of Gilbert Livingston

Aunt of Henry's sister-in-law Sarah
Sister of Philip, the Signer

Major General William Alexander, Lord Stirling
(1726, NYC)
(15 Jan 1783)
+ Sarah Livingston11 Mar 1748
(7 Nov 1725, Albany NY-)

The Life of William Alexander, Lord Stirling
Valley Forge

Dictionary of American Biography
Revolutionary soldier, was better known as Lord Stirling. Sir William Alexander, from whose family he claimed descent, was a court poet and favorite of James I, from whom he received an immense grant of land in North America. The grant, afterward enlarged, included Nova Scotia, Long Island, and a large part of Canada, but was never carried into effect. The favorite was created Earl of Stirling, and the peerage became extinct with the death of the fifth Earl in 1739. William Alexander's father, James Alexander, was a Jacobite who emigrated to America after the unsuccessful rising of 1715. He became a lawyer, and held various public offices. The son was born in New York City, was well educated and, like his father, an excellent mathematician and astronomer. He was associated with his mother as a merchant in New York, and in the early stages of the French and Indian War he was a commisary, and aide and secretary to Governor Shirley. He accompanied that unfortunate commander to England in 1756, and defended him, the next year, as a witness before the House of Commons. During this visit Alexander expended considerable money and time in the attempt to assert his claim to be the sixth Earl of Stirling. "Chiefly on the deposition of two old men, who affirmed, his descent from John Alexander 'uncle of the first earl,' a jury at Edinburgh, on the 24th March 1759, served him heir-male of Henry, fifth Earl of Stirling" (Charles Rogers, Memorials of the Earl of Stirling, 1877, I, 282). "The memorial was...remitted to the House of Lords. On the 10th March 1762, the Lords' Committee of Privileges resolved that he had not established his claim" (Ibid, I, 283). Alexander had returned to America the previous year, assuming the title Lord Stirling.

A man of wealth, and social prominence, having married the sister of Governor Livingston, he held various offices prior to the Revolution, surveyor-general of New Jersey, member of the Council, and assistant to the governor. He promoted farming, manufacture, and mining. His New York house was sold before the war, but he owned a fine mansion at Basking Ridge, NJ (burned in 1920). His interests in other lines are shown by his report on the transit of Venus in 1769 (in the New York Historical Society Library), and by the fact that he was one of the early governors of Kings (Columbia) College.

As the Revolution came on, Stirling opposed the Stamp Act, and organized a company of grenadiers. He conducted a stormy correspondence with the Loyalist Governor Franklin, who suspended him from the Council. On November 7, 1775, he was made colonel of the 1st New Jersey Regiment, and he raised and equipped two regiments in the state. His first opportunity for distinction came in January 1776. With forty volunteers in a pilot boat he captured at Sandy Hook the British transport Blue Mountain Valley. For this exploit he received the thanks of Congress, and on March 1, 1776, the commission of brigadier-general in the Continental army. Appointed to the chief command in New York City, he prepared for the imminent British invasion. Under his direction Forts Lee and Washington were built, and other fortifications were constructed in Harlem and on Long Island. Fort Stirling on Brooklyn Heights bears his name. The strategic importance of the Hudson Highlands was becoming recognized, and Stirling reported to Washington on their defenses.

It is with the battle of Long Island, August 27, 1776, that his name is chiefly associated. Under the direction of Putnam, his immediate superior, he was put at the head of the American right wing, charged with the defense of the coast road. His brigade consisted of Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania troops, about 1,500 to 2,000 in number. There were no fortifications; it was the earliest meeting of an American army with its opponent in open field. The line was near the junction of the present Twentieth Street and Third Avenue in Brooklyn, extending thence to Battle Hill in Greenwood Cemetery. His opponent was General Grant, with far superior forces. After a conflict of several hours with Grant, he was exposed to attack in the rear by a detachment under Lord Cornwallis. Sterling's main body escaped by fording Gowanus Creek and passing over a causeway, while Stirling himself with a part of the Maryland regiment held Cornwallis in check for a short time. Then superior numbers told, the mass of Stirling's small force was cut down, and he surrendered to the German De Heister. It was this part of the battle which Washington witnessed from the neighboring heights, and which drew from him his lament at the sacrifice of his soldiers.

Stirling was commended for his bravery by the British as well as by Washington, to whom he had written an account of the battle. He was exchanged in time to take part in the campaign for Westchester County, and in the retreat through the Jerseys. He guarded various points in New Jersey and along the Delaware River, and fought with distinction at the battle of Trenton, which he described in a letter two days later to Governor Livingston. His services led to his promotion to major general February 19, 1777. When Howe renewed his invasion of New Jersey from Amboy in the summer, Stirling was opposed to Cornwallis June 26; there was fighting near the present Metuchen, Westfield, and Plainfield, in which Stirling lost three field-guns. Cornwallis's advance was halted at Westfield, and the expedition was recalled.

Back To Top

General Stirling served for a short time in the Highlands durin gthe summer of 1777, led a division under Sullivan at the battle of Brandywine, and commanded the reserves at Germantown. He was one of the minority of officers who favored an attack on Philadelphia. In the succeeding melancholy winter at Valley Forge there occurred the Conway Cabal, in the exposure of which Stirling had a share. While at Reading he heard some remarks by the notorious Wilkinson, who quoted Conway's letter to General Gates, and these remarks Stirling reported to Washington. His last important battle was Monmouth, where he commanded the left wing, and was distinguished by his handling of artillery and in repelling a flank attack. Lee's conduct in that battle led to a court-martial, over which Lord Stirling presided.

In the following year "Light Horse Harry" Lee made his attack on Paulus Hook, and Stirling received the thanks of Congress for the manner in which he had supported Lee's advance and covered the retreat. In the record-breaking winter of January 1780, when the bays and sounds near New York were frozen over, Stirling led an expedition across the ice from Elizabeth to Staten Island; but the British had received warning, and the enterprise was a failure. In the following autumn Arnold's treason took place, and Stirling served on the court of inquiry to determine Arnold's fate. Later he was stationed in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, but chiefly at Albany. While there he prepared a plan of resistance at Saratoga to St. Leger's expected invasion by way of Ticonderoga, but the end of active warfare was at hand. Among his last military reports was a letter to Governor Clinton (September 10, 1781) giving news about the fleet of De Grasse, and one to the Commander-in-Chief, with details of recent events in the northern department.

Stirling was soldierly in bearing; according to one writer, "of the most martial appearance of any general in the army save Washington himself." He was brave, intelligent, energetic and yet cautious; a good organizer and military engineer; "a great acquisition to the army," in the words of a contemporary. He was highly esteemed by Washington, and after his death Lady Stirling received a letter of tribute from the General.

(Charles Rogers, Memorials of the Earl of Stirling and of the House of Alexander (1877); C.A. Ditmas, Life and Services of Major-General Wm. Alexander (Kings County, N.Y. Historical Society, 1920); W.A. Duer, Life of William Alexander (1847); Ludwig Schumacher, Earl of Stirling (1897); C.F. Adams in American History Review (1896); T.W. Field in Memoirs of the Long Island Historical Society, volume II))

Back To Top

Peter Van Brugh Livingston1 and Mary Alexander
Son of Henry's Granduncle Philip, 2nd Lord,
the older brother of Gilbert Livingston
Uncle of Henry's sister-in-law Sarah
Brother of Philip, the Signer
Peter Van Brugh Livingston1
(Oct 1710-28 Dec 1792)
+ Mary Alexander3 Nov 1739

The 20th Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans, Vol.6, p.457
LIVINGSTON, Peter Van Brugh, merchant, was born in Albany, N.Y., in October, 1710; second son of Philip and Catherine (Van Brugh) Livingston. He was graduated from Yale, A.B., 1731, A.M., 1784. On Nov. 3. 1739, he was married to Mary, daughter of James Alexander and sister of William Alexander, Lord Stirling. He engaged in business as a merchant in partnership with his brother-in-law for a number of years, they furnishing the supplies for Governor Shirley's expedition to Acadia in 1755. He was a member of the governor's council; a member of the committee of one hundred; a delegate to the let and 2d provincial congresses of New York, 1775-76; president of the let congress and state treasurer, 1775-77, participating in the measures that led to the Revolution. He was an original trustee of the College of New Jersey, 1748-61. He died at Liberty Hall, Elizabethtown, N.J., Dec. 28, 1792.

Back To Top

John Moore and Judith Newcomb Livingston1
Daughter of Uncle James, the slightly younger brother of Henry Sr.
John Moore
+ Judith Newcomb Livingston116 Oct 1773
(25 Dec 1753, Poughkeepsie NY-)

Terri Bradshaw O'Neill
In early December 2001, I was contacted by Terri O'Neill.

"I have spent the last two days at your Henry Livingston website, fascinated by your research and your resulting conclusion that Henry Livingston was the author of A Visit From St. Nicholas . I have ordered Don Foster s book and will order yours tomorrow and read them thoroughly before jumping on the HL bandwagon, but from what is on your website, the evidence is pretty convincing. I, too, am a descendant of the New York Moore clan, though not Clement Clarke Moore. Rather, I descend from Col. John Moore of New York, whose grandson, John Moore (1745-1828) married Judith Newcomb Livingston, daughter of Sheriff James Livingston, of Gilbert's line."

Between Terri, who knows her Moores, and I, who know my Livingstons, we've had a breakthrough. For those who are wondering how a poem could make its way from the Livingston household in Poughkeepsie to the Clement Moore household in New York City, Terri and I can now add a close Livingston/Moore connection to the mix.

Henry's first cousin and near neighbor
was married to the brother of Clement Moore's uncle

Well, actually, Judith Livingston was married to John Moore, the brother of the husband of Clement Moore's aunt, Judith Moore, the sister of Clement Moore's father, but it's likely that Clement Moore thought of Rev. Thomas Moore as his uncle rather than his aunt's husband.

Back To Top

John Reade and Catharine Livingston1
Daughter of Uncle James, the slightly younger brother of Henry Sr.
Catharine Livingston1
(11 Mar 1756)
+ John Reade6 Apr 1774

Robert Livingston Reade
Catharine Livingston Reade [married Nicholas William Stuyvesant]
Helena Livingston Reade
Anne Livingston Reade
Joseph Reade
Helen Sarah Reade

Henry and John Reade worked together to elect David Brooks.

Dutchess County Doorways
John Reade came to Poughkeepsie from what is now the town of Red Hook, where he and a certain Jacob Bogardus had been in partnership in business, having a sloop-landing and a storehouse a little south of the present village of Tivolli. At Poughkeepsie John Reade continued in river-commerce and, on the site of the former Continental shipyard, established what he called the Columbian Landing. His residence he fixed on the knoll that is now part of Eastman Park, where James Livingston had lived before him.

Worked for David Brooks with Henry

Back To Top

Dr. Baltus Van Kleeck and Cornelia Livingston1
Daughter of Uncle James, the slightly younger brother of Henry Sr.
Cornelia Livingston1
(16 Dec 1751, NY)
(18 Nov 1820, Poughkeepsie NY)
+ Dr. Baltus Van Kleeck16 Oct 1773

Baltus Van Kleeck [a physican of Newburgh NY]
Female Van Kleeck [married Congressional representative Jonathan Fisk; he was U.S. District Attorney for the Southern District of New York]

Dutchess County Doorways
Baltus Van Kleeck was a physician of Poughkeepsie.

Marriage 2: Major Andrew Billings and Cornelia Livingston1

+ Major Andrew BillingsAugust 1778
(25 Nov 1743, New London CT)
(28 Apr 1808, Poughkeepsie NY)

Cadwalader Colden Billings [Navy officer]
Livingston Billings [Poughkeepsie lawyer]
Eliza Billings [died unmarried]
Cornelia Billings [married attorney Randall S. Street]
Helen Billings [married attorney Jacob Wiehs]
Maria Billings [married physician Apollas B. Hanford]
Hannah Billings [died unmarried]

The Watch
Andrew Billings' Stolen Horse
Livingston Billings Dies 11/12/23

Oct 16 '72
"Andrew Billings Crdt by 12 sh & 6p for a box bt of him"
Jan 1 '73
"Paid Andrew Billings 12s6 for a snuff & smelling box bt of him last fall"
Henry Livingston Day Book

Dutchess County Doorways
Major Andrew Billings, of Poughkeepsie, was a U.S. army officer.

Back To Top

John Jay3 and Sarah Livingston2
Daughter of Governor William Livingston1

Sister of Henry's sister-in-law Sarah

Grandson of Greataunt Gertrude Schuyler,
slightly older sister of Alida Schuyler

John Jay Sarah Van Brugh Livingston
John JaySarah Van Brugh Livingston
John Jay2
(12 Dec 1745, NYC)
(17 May 1829)
+ Sarah Livingston3
(b:2 Aug 1756)

Peter Augustus Jay [boarded with Henry and Sarah;
married Mary Rutherfurd Clarkson]

Susan Jay
Anne Jay
Maria Jay [married Goldsborough Banyar]
Ann Jay
Sarah Louisa Jay
William Jay

Henry Supporting Over Chancellor Livingston
Legal Help for Indians

John Jay's wife and Henry corresponded while the Jays were in Spain. Jay asked a mutual friend, Egbert Benson, to ask Henry and Sarah to board his young son, so as to take some pressure off Jay's father.

When Jay ran for New York governor, Henry headed his Poughkeepsie Committee of Correspondence, and supported him against Henry's other cousin, Chancellor Robert R. Livingston, Jr.

Herringshaw's Encyclopedia of American Biography of the Nineteenth Century
JAY, JOHN, soldier, lawyer, statesman, was born Dec. 12, 1745, in New York city. He was a delegate to the continental congress from 1774 to 1777, anal from 1778 to 1779. In 1776 he was recalled from congress to aid in forming the government of New York, and for that reason was not present to sign the declaration of independence. From 1777 to 1779 he was chief justice of the state, but resigned to fill the post of president of congress. He was appointed secretary of state. Though not a member he aided at the convention which framed the federal constitution. In 1789 he was appointed chief justice of the supreme court of the United States, which position he resigned in 1794 to accept the mission to England, when he negotiated the treaty which bears his name. He was governor of New York from 1795 to 1801, after which he retired to private life. His Correspondence and State Papers were published in 1893. He died May 17, 1829, in Bedford, N. Y.

Back To Top

Yale President Timothy Dwight and Mary Woolsey1
1st cousin of Henry's wife,
niece of Henry's mother-in-law, Abigail Woolsey
Yale President Timothy Dwight, D.D. (1795-1817)
(15 Apr 1766, Albany NY)
(24 Sep 1824)
+ Mary Woolsey1
(b:Bef. 1760)

Timothy Dwight [endowed Dwight chair at Yale]
James Dwight [married Susan Breed]
Dr. Benjamin Woolsey Dwight [married Sophia W. Strong]
Rev. Sereno Edward Dwight [married Susan Edwards Daggett]
Rev. William T. Dwight

Becomes Yale President
Dwight Family Papers, 1713-1937
A Poem

Master Timmy

Rev. Dwight gave the funeral service for Henry's father-in-law, Rev. Welles, and then for Henry's wife, Sarah. During Rev. Dwight's travels, he stayed in Utica with Henry's daughter and son-inlaw, Catharine and Arthur Breese.

The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans Volume 3
page 360
Dwight, Timothy, educator, was born in Northampton, Mass., May 14, 1752; son of Maj. Timothy and Mary (Edwards) Dwight; grandson of Col. Timothy and Experience (King) Dwight, and of Jonathan and Sarah (Pierpont) Edwards; great-grandson of Nathaniel and Mehitable (Partridge) Dwight; great-great-grandson of Capt. Timothy and Anna (Flint) Dwight, and great-great-great-grandson of John and Hannah Dwight of Dedham, the immigrants, 1634-35. He was graduated at Yale in 1769, sharing with Nathan Strong the honors of the class. He was principal of Hopkins grammar school, 1769-71; tutor at Yale, 1771-77, during which time he studied law; was [p.360] licensed to preach in 1777 and served as chaplain in Parson's brigade of the Connecticut line, 1777-78. The death of his father called him home and he took charge of the farm, occasionally preaching in the neighborhood churches, 1778-83. At the same time he conducted a day school and while New Haven was in the hands of the British, he had under his care several of the refugeed Yale students. He was a representative in the Massachusetts legislature, 1782, and refused a nomination as representative in congress. He was pastor of the church at Greenfield Hill, Fairfield, Conn.,1783-95, and established there his celebrated academy and became the pioneer of higher education of women, placing both sexes on an equal footing in his school. During this period he secured the union of the Congregational and Presbyterian churches in New England. He was president of Yale college from Sept. 8, 1795, to Jan. 11, 1817, and Livingston professor of divinity pro tempore, 1795-1805, and by election, 1805-1817. He found the college with a narrow and pedantic curriculum, with the bitterest of feeling existing between the freshmen and the upper-class men, and between the students and the faculty, and with the burden of a primary system. These he reformed, and at his death the 110 students had increased to 313 and the college had taken rank as one of the model university schools in America. He was married in March, 1777, to Mary, daughter of Benjamin Woolsey of Long Island and they had eight sons, the eldest of whom, Timothy (1778-1884), was a merchant in New Haven and gave $5000 to endow the Dwight professorship of didactic theology at Yale. He received from the college of New Jersey the degree of S.T.D. in 1787, and from Harvard that of LL.D. in 1810. His master dissertation was: History, Eloquence and Poetry of the Bible; while a chaplain in the army he wrote the patriotic song Columbia; his most ambitious work was his epic The Conquest of Canaan and his most popular pastoral poem was Greenfield Hill (1794). He revised Watts's Psalms with additions of his own and made a selection of hymns, introduced in the worship of the Presbyterian churches by the General assembly. His published books include: Travels in New England and New York (4 vols,, 1821); Theology Explained and Defended in a Course of 173 Sermons (5 vols., 1818); The Genuineness and Authenticity of the New Testament (1793); Discourse on the Character of Washington (1800); Observations on Language (1816); Essay on Light (1816). See Memoir by the Rev. Sereno Edwards Dwight (1846). He died in New Haven, Conn., Jan. 11, 1817.

Back To Top

Chancellor Robert R. Livingston, Jr.2 and Elizabeth Stevens
Grandson of Henry's Granduncle, Colonel Henry Beekman
and Henry's Granduncle Robert Livingston, Jr.

Chancellor Robert R. Livingston, Jr.
Chancellor Robert R. Livingston, Jr.

Chancellor Robert R. Livingston, Jr.2
(27 Nov 1746, NYC)
(Feb 27, 1813, Clermont NY)
+ Elizabeth Stevens

Henry Supporting His Opponent
Elizabeth Dies

Colonel Beekman had only a single daughter, so his nephew, Henry Sr., acted as his estate manager and political lieutenant. Henry Jr. spent several winters, at least, staying at his granduncle's New York City mansion.

Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949
LIVINGSTON, Robert R. (brother of Edward Livingston and nephew of Philip Livingston and William Livingston), a Delegate from New York; born in New York City November 27, 1746; was graduated from King's College (now Columbia University), New York City, in 1765; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1773 and commenced practice in New York City; city recorder 1773-1775; member of the provincial convention of 1775; Member of the Continental Congress 1775-1777 and 1779-1781; one of the committee of five appointed to draw up the Declaration of Independence but returned to duties in the provincial assembly before it was signed; delegate to the State constitutional convention in April 1777; Secretary of Foreign Affairs from August 1781 to August 1783; chancellor of New York State 1777-1801 and administered the oath of office to President Washington April 30, 1789; unsuccessful candidate for Governor of New York in 1798; Minister Plenipotentiary to France 1801-1804; prominent in local affairs; assisted Robert Fulton and was his partner in constructing the first steamboat; died in Clermont, N.Y., February 26, 1813; interment on his estate, "Clermont," near Clermont, N.Y.

Back To Top

Mayor Edward Livingston2 and Mary McEvers
Grandson of Henry's Granduncle, Colonel Henry Beekman
and Henry's Granduncle Robert Livingston, Jr.
Mayor Edward Livingston2
(28 May 1764, Clermont, Columbia County NY)
(23 May 1836, Montgomery Place, Rhinebeck, NY)
+ Mary McEvers
(-13 Mar 1801

Colonel Beekman had only a single daughter, so his nephew, Henry Sr., acted as his estate manager and political lieutenant. Henry Jr. spent several winters, at least, staying at his granduncle's New York City mansion.

Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949
LIVINGSTON, Edward (brother of Robert R. Livingston and nephew of Philip Livingston and William Livingston), a Representative from New York and a Representative and a Senator from Louisiana; born in Clermont, Livingston Manor, N.Y., May 26, 1764; was graduated from Princeton College in 1781; studied law in Albany, N.Y.; was admitted to the bar in 1785 and commenced practice in New York City; elected as a Democrat from New York to the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Congresses (March 4, 1795-March 3, 1801); United States district attorney from March 27, 1801, to July 25, 1803; mayor of New York City 1801-1803; moved to New Orleans, La., in 1804; engaged in the practice of law and in the real-estate business; author of a legal code for Louisiana; served at the Battle of New Orleans on the staff of General Jackson in 1815; member of the State house of representatives in 1820; elected as a Democrat from Louisiana to the Eighteenth, Nineteenth, and Twentieth Congresses (March 4, 1823-March 3, 1829); elected to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1829, until May 24, 1831, when he resigned, having been appointed to the Cabinet; Secretary of State in the Cabinet of President Andrew Jackson from May 24, 1831, to May 29, 1833; Minister Plenipotentiary to France from May 29, 1833, to April 28, 1835; inherited from his sister "Montgomery Place" on the Hudson River, Barrytown, Dutchess County, N.Y., and died there May 23, 1836; interment in the family vault at Clermont, N.Y.[p.1468]

Back To Top

General Richard Montgomery and Janet Livingston2
Granddaughter of Henry's Granduncle, Colonel Henry Beekman
and Henry's Granduncle Robert Livingston, Jr.

General Montgomery

General Richard Montgomery
(2 Dec 1736, Convoy House, Donegal Ireland)
(31 Dec 177, Quebec Canada)
+ Janet Livingston2
(27 Aug 1743, Clermont NY)
(Nov 1827, Montgomery Place NY)

An elegy on the death of Montgomery Tappen
Death of Major General Richard Montgomery

Colonel Beekman had only a single daughter, so his nephew, Henry Sr., acted as his estate manager and political lieutenant. Henry Jr. spent several winters, at least, staying at his granduncle's New York City mansion. Janet Livingston also spent extended periods of time staying with her grandparents.

Henry and two of Janet's brothers, Henry Beekman Livingston and John Robert Livingston, served under Janet's husband on the 1775 invasion of Canada.

Henry named a son Sidney Montgomery Livingston.

The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans
MONTGOMERY, Richard, Revolutionary soldier, was born at Convoy House, near Raphoe, county Donegal, Ireland, Dec. 2, 1736; son of Thomas Montgomery, a member of the British parliament from Lifford. He was graduated from Trinity college, Dublin, and entered the 17th regiment of foot as ensign, Aug. 21, 1756. His regiment was ordered to Halifax, N.S., and he took part in the siege of Louisburg under Gen. James Wolfe in 1758. He was promoted lieutenant for his bravery on this occasion, and in 1759 he joined the expedition under Sir Jeffrey Amherst to relieve General Abercrombie. He served in the command of Colonel Haviland in the capture of Fort Ticonderoga in July, Crown Point in August, and Montreal, Sept. 7, 1759; was promoted adjutant, May 15, 1760, ordered to the West Indies in 1762, was commissioned captain, May 5, 1762, and took part in the campaign against Martinique and Havana. He returned to New York, and at the close of the war with France in 1763, received permission to return to England, where he resided until 1773, when he became embittered, as his claims for military advancement were neglected.

As a result he sold his commission in the army, returned to America in 1773, and purchased a farm of sixty acres at King's Bridge, Westchester county, N.Y. He was married July 24, 1773, to Janet, daughter of Judge Robert R. and Margaret (Beckman) Livingston and removed to Rhinebeck, N.Y., where he resided until he joined the Continental army. He was a delegate to the let Provincial congress held in New York city in May, 1775, and in June, 1775, was commissioned one of eight brigadier-generals in the Continental army and became second in command to Gen. Philip Schuyler. He left Rhinebeck with his wife and her brother, Edward Livingston (q.v.), then a mere lad, and they made the journey in a coach to the residence of Gen. Philip Schuyler at Saratoga where he parted with his wife with the assurance "that she would never have cause to blush for her Montgomery."

On account of the disability of General Schuyler, Montgomery was placed in command of the expedition to Canada. The invasion was undertaken without proper preparation and its movements were controlled chiefly by circumstances. He proceeded by way of Whitehall, and after many hardships reached Ticonderoga where he learned that Sir Guy Carleton was organizing a naval force on Lake Champlain to prevent the Americans from crossing the St. Lawrence. Montgomery took possession of the Isle aux Noix on Lake Champlain, and with 1000 men laid siege to St. Johns and Chambly, which surrendered to him, and advanced toward Montreal, which capitulated, Nov. 12, 1775, and for this victory he was made major-general by congress.

By the capture of Montreal he obtained possession of all the military stores in the town, and of eleven vessels in the harbor, General Carleton having with great difficulty retreated to Quebec. The central object of the expedition now only remained; as Montgomery wrote in a letter to his father-in-law, Robert R. Livingston, "until Quebec is taken, Canada is unconquered."

He effected a junction with Arnold, who had a force of 700 men, before the walls of Quebec, Dec, 3, 1775. The combined attack was made on both sides of the place, Dec. 31, 1775, Montgomery leading his little force of 500 men in the midst of a heavy snow-storm. The first barrier was carried, and Montgomery at their head shouted "Men of New York, you will not fear to follow where your general leads!" The little army pushed forward. In the windows of a house which overlooked the second barrier, two cannon had been placed, which, upon Montgomery's appearance on a little rising ground, were discharged. Montgomery and his two aids, McPherson and Captain Chessman, being in advance, were instantly killed.

His soldiers with those of Arnold became at once demoralized and the British troops pursued the defeated army from the cityand captured about 400 men. Montgomery's body was found partly covered by the snow and the British commander ordered him buried within the walls surrounding the powder magazine, and accorded the body the honor of a military burial. After reposing for forty-two years, his remains were removed at the request of the legislature of the state of New York to New York city and interred in St. Paul's chapel churchyard.

The journey from Quebec to New York was attended by civic honors, notably at Albany, July 4, 1818, and on the voyage down the Hudson on the steamer Richmond, passing Montgomery Place, the home of the widow, who viewed the vessel from the portico. The death of Montgomery was deeply felt by friend and foe, and congress proclaimed its "grateful remembrance, respect and high veneration." The city of New York erected a monument under the portico of St. Paul's chapel on the Broadway front. A tablet was also erected upon the spot where he fell at Quebec, by the Sons of the American Revolution in 1901. Mrs. Montgomery survived her husband for fifty-two years and after completing the home commenced by the general in 1774 at Rhinebeck Flats, known as the "Rhinebeck Place," removed to the immediate east bank of the Hudson above Barrytown, where she erected "Montgomery Place" which continued to be her home up to the time of her death in November, 1827.

Back To Top

General Philip John Schuyler2 and Catharine Van Rensselaer3
Grandson of Henry's Granduncle John Schuyler,
the younger brother of Alida Schuyler

Greatgrandson of Henry's Greataunt Gertrude Schuyler,
the older sister of Alida Schuyler

General Philip Schuyler
General Philip Schuyler

General Philip John Schuyler2
(20 Nov 1733, Albany NY)
(18 Nov 1804, Albany NY)
+ Catharine Van Rensselaer37 Sep 1755
(4 Nov 1734, The Crailo NYC-)

Elected U.S. Senator
Servant Jack Dies

The Canadian expedition in which Henry participated was under General Montgomery, because of the illness of General Schuyler. Henry became ill on his trip home, and stayed overnight with General Schuyler's wife and daughter.

Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949
a Delegate and a Senator from New York; born in Albany, N.Y., November 20, 1733; attended the common schools of Albany and studied under a private tutor in New Rochelle, N.Y.; served in the British Army and was commissioned captain June 14, 1755; served under Gen. Phineas Lyman; appointed chief commissary in 1756; resigned from the British Army in 1757; in 1758 rejoined General Bradstreet as commissary with the rank of major; sent to England to settle colonial claims in 1758; returned in 1763 and engaged in the lumber business in Saratoga, N.Y.; built the first flax mill in America; commissioner to settle the boundary between New York and Massachusetts in 1764; Member of the Continental Congress 1775-1777; appointed one of the four major generals in the Continental Army in 1775, but became involved in military disputes and resigned in 1779; again a Member of the Continental Congress 1778-1781; State senator from the western New York district 1780-1784 and 1786-1790; elected as a Federalist to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1789, to March 3, 1791; unsuccessful candidate for reelection; again a member of the State senate 1792-1797; elected to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1797, to January 3, 1798, when he resigned on account of ill health; died in Albany, N.Y., November 18, 1804; interment in Albany Rural Cemetery.

Back To Top

Alexander Hamilton and Elizabeth Schuyler3
Daughter of Major General Philip J. Schuyler
Elizabeth Schuyler Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton
(11 Jan 1757, West Indies)
(12 Jul 1804)
+ Elizabeth Schuyler3
(7 Aug 1757, NYC)
(2 Apr 1854, NYC)

James Alexander Hamilton
[married Mary Morris, ggdau Gov. Lewis Morris]
Colonel William Stephen Hamilton
[married Maria Eliza Van den Heuvel]
Colonel John Church Hamilton


Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949
HAMILTON, Alexander, a Delegate from New York; born on the island of Nevis, British West Indies, January 11, 1757; immigrated to the United States in 1772, where he received educational training in the schools of Elizabethtown, N.J., and King's College (now Columbia University), New York City; entered the Continental Army in New York in 1776 as captain of Artillery; appointed aide-de-camp to General Washington March 1, 1777, and served in that capacity until February 16, 1781; led a storming party in the Battle of Yorktown; Member of the Continental Congress in 1782, 1783, 1787, and 1788; member of the Annapolis Convention of 1786; served in the New York State assembly in 1787; member of the Philadelphia Constitutional Convention in 1787 which adopted the Constitution of the United States; member of the State constitutional convention in 1788; studied law; was admitted to the bar and practiced in New York City; Secretary of the Treasury in the Cabinet of [p.1257] President Washington 1789-1795; returned to New York and resumed the practice of law; mortally wounded in a duel with Aaron Burr at Weehawken on the Hudson, and died in New York City the following day, July 12, 1804; interment in Trinity Churchyard.

American Biographical Library
Captain Provincial Company New York Artillery, 14th March, 1776; Lieutenant-Colonel and principal Aide-de-Camp to General Washington, 1st March, 1777, to 23d December, 1783; Brevet Colonel, 30th September, 1783; Major-General and Inspector-General United States Army, 19th July, 1798; honorably discharged 15th June, 1800. (Mortally wounded in a duel with Aaron Burr, 11th July, and died 12th July, 1804.)

Herringshaw's Encyclopedia of American Biography of the Nineteenth Century
HAMILTON, ALEXANDER, lawyer, statesman, was born Jan. 11, 1757, in the West Indies. He entered the army as an officer of artillery and became an aid-de-camp to Washington, with the rank of lieutenant- colonel. He was a delegate to the continental congress in 1782 and 1783, and in 1787 and 1788; in 1786 was elected to the state assembly; was elected to the convention which framed the federal constitution; by his writings, signed Publius, did much to secure its adoption, but was the only member from New York who signed that instrument. In 1789 he was appointed secretary of the treasury, and continued in that office until 1795, when he resigned. In 1804 he had a difficulty with Aaron Burr, which resulted in a duel, which took place at Hoboken, when he received a fatal shot, and died on the following day, July 12, 1804.

Back To Top

Mary Livingston1-3x and James Duane
Grandaughter of Philip, the Signer
James Duane (6 Feb 1733 - 1 Feb 1797)
(Oct 1710-28 Dec 1792)
+ Mary Livingston1-3x3 Nov 1739
(29 Oct 1738-6 May 1821)

The 20th Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans
Duane, James, jurist, was born in New York city, Feb. 6, 1733; third son of Anthony and Althea (Ketaltas) Duane. Anthony Duane, a native of County Galway, Ireland, and an officer in the British navy, resigned after being stationed in New York, and returned there to make the city his home. He married as his second wife Althea Ketaltas, the daughter of a leading merchant of the city. She died in 1736 and he was married in 1741 to the widow of Thomas Lynch of Flushing, N.Y. He died Aug. 14, 1747. His son James was educated for the law in the office of James Alexander and was admitted an attorney, Aug. 3, 1754. He was married Oct. 21, 1759, to Mary, eldest daughter of Robert Livingston, proprietor of the Livingston manor on the Hudson river. He inherited from his father valuable property, including a tract of 6000 acres of land in the wilderness west of Albany, N.Y., afterward Duanesburg, Schenectady county. He also purchased 64,000 acres of land in the New Hampshire grant, now a part of Vermont, which he supposed to be a portion of the province of New York, and of which he could never gain possession. In 1774 he was a member of the active committees organized in New York city to oppose British encroachments and he was elected to the Continental congress of that year. In April, 1775, he was a delegate to the New York provincial congress and again from June, 1776, to April, 1777. He was again chosen by that body to the Continental congress and continued a delegate in regular attendance, 1774-84, meanwhile removing his family from New York city to Livingston manor for safety. He at first favored the uniting of the colonies under a president appointed by the king, with congress bound by the acts of parliament. He also opposed the Declaration of Independence, and sought to defer its adoption, hoping to avoid final separation. With John Jay and Peter Van Schaeck he was in favor of conciliation. He however signed the articles of confederation for New York with Francis Lewis, William Duet and Gouverneur Morris in 1771. He took possession of his large estates in New York city upon the evacuation of the place by the British troops, Nov. 25, 1783, and made his home on his farm of twenty acres, afterward Gramercy Park. The same year he was elected a state senator, serving 1782-85, and again, 1789-90. On Feb. 5, 1784, he was appointed by Governor Clinton mayor of New York and held the office for nearly six years. He was a member of the council and of the convention of 1788. President Washington appointed him U.S. district judge of New York in 1789 and he continued on the bench for five years. His failing health compelled him to resign in 1794, and he erected a house at Duanesburg, but did not live to see it completed. He died in Schenectady, N.Y., Feb. 1, 1797.

Back To Top

Lt. Gov. Stephen Van Rensselaer1 and Margaret Schuyler3
Grandson of Philip, the Signer
Son of Henry's sister-in-law, Sarah's, sister Catharine

Daughter of Major General Philip J. Schuyler

Lt. Gov. Stephen Van Rensselaer1
+ Margaret Schuyler36 Jun 1783
(Abt. 1767-)


The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans: Volume X
VAN RENSSELAER, Stephen, soldier, was born in New York city, Nov. 1, 1765; son of Stephen and Catherine (Livingston) Van Rensselaer; grandson of Philip and Maria (Sanders) Livingston; great-grandson of Kiliaen and Areoantie (Schuyler) Van Rensselaer; great2-grandson of Jeremias, the immigrant, and Maria (Van Cortlandt) Van Rensselaer, and great3-grandson of Kiliaen, the first patroon.

He was a student at the College of New Jersey, and was graduated from Harvard in 1782, returning to the new manor house which his father had built in 1765. His lands had become greatly depreciated by the Revolutionary war, but he devoted himself to the improvement of the vast tract remaining, offering to farmers the inducement of low rentals, in order to increase his tenantage.

He was a Federal member of the state assembly, 1789-91; 1798, and 1809-10; state senator, 1791-96, and was elected lieutenant-governor of New York in 1795. He was appointed major in the state militia in 1786; colonel in 1788, and major-general in 1801, and was a commissioner to report to the state assembly on the advisability of establishing a canal between the Hudson river and the great lakes.

At the outbreak of the war of 1812, he was given command of the U.S. forces on the northern frontier; mustered a force of militia, numbering 6,000 men, near Lewiston, and on Oct. 13, 1812, detailed 1000 men under Lieut. Col. Solomon Van Rensselaer (q.v.) and Lieut. Col. John Chrystie, to attack Queenston Heights, Ontario, preparatory to a further invasion of Canada. Colonel Van Rensselaer was wounded early in the engagement, and Capt. John E. Wool assumed command and captured the heights. On October 14, British reinforcements arrived, and when General Van Rensselaer attempted to move his remaining force across the river to relieve Captain Wool, the men refused to cross, and Wool, overpowered by numbers, was compelled to surrender; the American loss being 190 in killed and wounded, and 900 prisoners, against a British loss of 130 in killed, wounded and missing. General Van Rensselaer was severely criticized for his tardiness in making the attack, and resigned his commission in the army, Oct. 24, 1814.

He was again appointed a member of the canal commission, and subsequently made chairman, and when the Erie and Champlain canals were completed in 1825, he was chosen their president, serving till 1839. He was re-elected to the state assembly in 1818; was a member of the state constitutional convention of 1821; elected a representative in the 18th congress in 1823, to fill a vacancy caused by the resignation of Solomon Van Rensselaer, and re-elected to the 19th and 20th congresses, serving, 1823-29.

He was a regent of the University of New York, 1819-39, and chancellor at the time of his death; was president of the State Agricultural society in 1820, [p.247] and fitted out the survey of the Erie canal from Albany to Buffalo, under Amos Eaton in 1821-23. His connection with this survey impressed him with the need of a school of theoretical and practical science, and in 1824 he founded Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute at Troy, N.Y., de-fraying half of its expenses for several years.

He was twice married; first in 1733, to Margaret, daughter of Gen. Philip Jeremiah and Anna Sybil (Sawyer) Schuyler; and secondly, in 1802, to Cornelia, daughter of Judge William and Cornelia (Bell) Paterson of New Jersey. He was a corresponding member of the Massachusetts Historical society, and received the honorary degree of LL.D. from Yale in 1822. He is the author of: An Agricultural and Geological Survey of the District adjoining the Erie Canal (1824). He died in Albany, N.Y., Jan. 26, 1839.

Back To Top

Mayor Philip Schuyler Van Rensselaer3
and Anne De Peyster Van Cortlandt1
Grandson of Philip, the Signer
Nephew of Henry's sister-in-law Sarah

Daughter of Henry's aunt Joanna

Mayor Philip Schuyler Van Rensselaer3
(15 Apr 1766, Albany NY)
(24 Sep 1824)
+ Anne De Peyster Van Cortlandt1
(1 Jun 1766)
(10 Jan 1855)

American Biographical Notes
wealthy citizen of N. Y.

Construction begins on Albany's first Capitol building. Mayor Philip Schuyler Van Rensselaer lays the cornerstone.

Back To Top

Brig.Gen. Philip Van Cortlandt1
Son of Henry's aunt Joanna
Philip Van Cortlandt General Philip Van Cortlandt
Philip Van Cortlandt1 General Philip Van Cortlandt1
Brig.Gen. Philip Van Cortlandt1
(Aug 21, 1749, NYC)
(Nov 21, 1831, Van Cortlandt Manor, Croton on Hudson NY)

Stolen Horse

Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949
VAN CORTLANDT, Philip (brother of Pierre Van Cortlandt, Jr.), a Representative from New York; born in New York City August 21, 1749; pursued classical studies; attended Coldenham Academy and was graduated from King's College (later Columbia University) in 1768; engaged as a civil engineer; member of the Provincial Congress in 1775; during the War of the Revolution served as lieutenant colonel and was mustered out of the service with the rank of brigadier general for gallant conduct at the siege of Yorktown under General Lafayette; delegate to the State convention which adopted the Federal Constitution in 1788; served as supervisor of the town of Cortland, and as school commissioner and road master; member of the State assembly 1788-1790; served in the State senate 1791-1793; elected as a Democrat to the Third and to the seven succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1793-March 3, 1809); engaged in agricultural pursuits; accompanied General Lafayette on his tour through the United States in 1831; was a charter member of the Society of the Cincinnati; died at Van Cortlandt Manor, Croton on Hudson, Westchester County, N.Y., on November 1, 1831; interment in Hillside Cemetery, Peekskill, N.Y.

Back To Top


All Henry Livingston's Poetry,     All Clement Moore's Poetry     Historical Articles About Authorship

Many Ways to Read Henry Livingston's Poetry

Arguments,   Smoking Gun?,   Reindeer Names,   First Publication,   Early Variants  
Timeline Summary,   Witness Letters,   Quest to Prove Authorship,   Scholars,   Fiction  

   Book,   Slideshow,   Xmas,   Writing,   The Man,   Work,   Illos,   Music,   Genealogy,   Bios,   History,   Games  

Henry's Home

Mary's Home

IME logo Copyright © 2001, InterMedia Enterprises