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32nd New York State Legislature

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

32nd New York State Legislature
31st 33rd
Old Albany City Hall.png
The Old Albany City Hall (undated)
JurisdictionNew York, United States
TermJuly 1, 1808 – June 30, 1809
PresidentLt. Gov. John Broome (Dem.-Rep.)
Party controlDemocratic-Republican (31-1)
SpeakerJames W. Wilkin (Dem.-Rep.)
Party controlDemocratic-Republican (60-45)
1stNovember 1 – 8, 1808
2ndJanuary 17 – March 30, 1809

The 32nd New York State Legislature, consisting of the New York State Senate and the New York State Assembly, met from November 1, 1808, to March 30, 1809, during the second year of Daniel D. Tompkins's governorship, in Albany.


Under the provisions of the New York Constitution of 1777, amended by the Constitutional Convention of 1801, 32 Senators were elected on general tickets in the four senatorial districts for four-year terms. They were divided into four classes, and every year eight Senate seats came up for election. Assemblymen were elected countywide on general tickets to a one-year term, the whole Assembly being renewed annually.

In 1797, Albany was declared the State capital, and all subsequent Legislatures have been meeting there ever since. In 1799, the Legislature enacted that future Legislatures meet on the last Tuesday of January of each year unless called earlier by the governor.

On February 8, 1808, State Senator Joseph C. Yates was appointed to the New York Supreme Court, leaving a vacancy in the Eastern District. The Legislature re-apportioned the Senate seats, and transferred one seat each from the Southern, the Middle and the Eastern (the vacant one) districts to the Western District.

On April 1, 1808, the Legislature also re-apportioned the Assembly districts. The total number of assemblymen was increased from 100 to 112. Broome and Tioga were separated with 1 seat each. Allegany, Genesee and Ontario were separated with 1 seat for Genesee, 5 for Ontario and Allegany was joined with Steuben. Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence were separated with 2 seats for Jefferson and 1 each for Lewis and St. Lawrence. Cayuga, Chenango, Madison and Onondaga gained 1 seat each; New York City and Oneida gained 2 each. Dutchess, Rensselaer, Washington and Westchester lost 1 seat each. Franklin County was split from Clinton County but remained in the same Assembly district. Niagara County was split from Genesee County, and had 1 seat in the Assembly.

At this time the politicians were divided into two opposing political parties: the Federalists and the Democratic-Republicans.[1]

In 1805, the 28th Legislature had chartered the Merchant's Bank of New York which had been founded by Federalists in competition to the Democratic-Republican Bank of the Manhattan Company. The Democratic-Republican majority of the 27th Legislature had not only refused to grant a charter, but actually ordered the Merchant's Bank to shut down by May 1805. During the next session, the bank bribed enough legislators to have the charter approved, although the Democratic-Republican leaders advocated strongly against it. Gov. Morgan Lewis spoke out in favor of granting the charter what was resented by the party leaders DeWitt Clinton and Ambrose Spencer, and soon led to the split of the party into "Lewisites" and "Clintonians".[2] The 30th Legislature had a Lewisite-Federalist majority and elected a Council of Appointment which removed most Clintonian office-holders. The Lewisites and the Federalists nominated Gov. Morgan Lewis for re-election but he was defeated by Clintonian Daniel D. Tompkins. The 31st New York State Legislature had a Clintonian majority and elected a Council of Appointment which removed most of the Lewisite office-holders, many of whom had been appointed during the previous year.


The State election was held from April 26 to 28, 1808. Senators Benjamin Coe (Southern D.) were re-elected. Edward P. Livingston (Middle D.), David Hopkins (Eastern D.), Francis A. Bloodgood, Walter Martin, Luther Rich (all three Western D.); and Assemblymen William W. Gilbert (Southern D.) and Sylvanus Smalley (Western D.) were also elected to full terms in the Senate. Silas Halsey (Western D.) was elected to fill the vacancy. Hopkins was a Federalist, Livingston a Lewisite, the other seven were regular Democratic-Republicans.


The Legislature met at the Old City Hall in Albany on November 1, 1808, to elect presidential electors; and adjourned on November 8.

James W. Wilkin (Dem.-Rep.) was elected Speaker with 60 votes against 45 for Stephen Van Rensselaer (Fed.). Daniel Rodman (Dem.-Rep.) was re-elected Clerk of the Assembly with 61 votes against 46 for James Van Ingen (Fed.).

On November 7, 1808, the Legislature elected 19 presidential electors, all Democratic-Republicans: Ambrose Spencer, Henry Huntington, John W. Seaman, Henry Rutgers, John Garretson, Ebenezer White, Thomas Lawrence, James Tallmadge, Jonathan Rouse, Micajah Pettit, Henry Yates Jr., Benjamin Mooers, Adam B. Voorman, Thomas Shankland, William Hallock, Russell Attwater, Joseph Simonds, Hugh Jamison and Matthew Carpenter. They cast 13 votes for James Madison and 6 votes for George Clinton for President; and 13 votes for George Clinton, and 3 votes each for James Madison and James Monroe for Vice President.

The Assembly met for the regular session on January 17, 1809, the Senate assembled a quorum only the next day; and both Houses adjourned on March 30.

On February 7, 1809, the Legislature elected Assemblyman Obadiah German (Dem.-Rep.) to succeed Samuel L. Mitchill (Dem.-Rep.) in the U.S. Senate.

At this time the major political controversy was the Embargo Act of 1807 which was supported by the Democratic-Republicans, but opposed by the Federalists. Most of the Lewisites eventually supported the Embargo, but assailed DeWitt Clinton in the press because he had originally opposed it. The Embargo was very unpopular and led to a revival of the Federalist Party which had been reduced to a small minority (without any member in the Senate from 1806 to 1808), but at the State election in April 1809 would already win a majority of the Assembly seats.

State Senate


Note: There are now 62 counties in the State of New York. The counties which are not mentioned in this list had not yet been established, or sufficiently organized, the area being included in one or more of the abovementioned counties.


The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued in office as members of this Legislature. William W. Gilbert and Sylvanus Smalley changed from the Assembly to the Senate.

District Senators Term left Party Notes
Southern Ezra L'Hommedieu* 1 year Dem.-Rep.
Jonathan Ward* 2 years Dem.-Rep. elected to the Council of Appointment
DeWitt Clinton* 3 years Dem.-Rep. also Mayor of New York City
Benjamin Coe* 4 years Dem.-Rep.
William W. Gilbert* 4 years Dem.-Rep.
Middle Peter C. Adams* 1 year Dem.-Rep.
James G. Graham* 1 year Dem.-Rep./Lewisite elected to the Council of Appointment
Elisha Barlow* 2 years Dem.-Rep./Lewisite
James Burt* 2 years Dem.-Rep./Lewisite
Joshua H. Brett* 3 years Dem.-Rep./Lewisite
Robert Williams* 3 years Dem.-Rep./Lewisite
Edward P. Livingston 4 years Dem.-Rep./Lewisite
Eastern Adam Comstock* 1 year Dem.-Rep.
John Veeder* 1 year Dem.-Rep.
Jacob Snell* 2 years Dem.-Rep./Lewisite
Isaac Kellogg* 3 years Dem.-Rep. elected to the Council of Appointment
John McLean* 3 years Dem.-Rep.
Charles Selden* 3 years Dem.-Rep.
John Tayler* 3 years Dem.-Rep.
David Hopkins 4 years Federalist
Western Silas Halsey 1 year Dem.-Rep. elected to fill vacancy, in place of Joseph C. Yates;
also Seneca County Clerk
Nathaniel Locke* 1 year Dem.-Rep.
John Nicholas* 1 year Dem.-Rep./Lewisite
John Ballard* 2 years Dem.-Rep.
Salmon Buell* 2 years Dem.-Rep.
Jacob Gebhard* 2 years Dem.-Rep.
Nathan Smith*[3] 2 years Dem.-Rep.
Alexander Rea* 3 years Dem.-Rep. elected to the Council of Appointment
Francis A. Bloodgood 4 years Dem.-Rep.
Walter Martin 4 years Dem.-Rep.
Luther Rich 4 years Dem.-Rep.
Sylvanus Smalley* 4 years Dem.-Rep.


  • Clerk: Sebastian Visscher

State Assembly


Note: There are now 62 counties in the State of New York. The counties which are not mentioned in this list had not yet been established, or sufficiently organized, the area being included in one or more of the abovementioned counties.


The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued as members of this Legislature.

District Assemblymen Party Notes
Albany John Brown*
John H. Burhans
Johann Jost Dietz* Federalist
Jonathan Jenkins*
Stephen Van Rensselaer* Federalist Minority Leader
Abraham Van Vechten* Federalist
and Steuben
Henry A. Townsend Dem.-Rep.
Broome Eleazar Dana
Cayuga Henry Bloom Dem.-Rep.
Ebenezer Hewitt Dem.-Rep.
Charles Kellogg Dem.-Rep.
Chenango Samuel Campbell
Obadiah German* Dem.-Rep. on February 7, 1809, elected to the U.S. Senate
Ebenezer Wakley Dem.-Rep.
Clinton and
Kinner Newcomb Dem.-Rep.
Columbia James Hyatt
Moncrief Livingston Federalist
Gaius Stebbins
Jacob R. Van Rensselaer* Federalist
Delaware Daniel Fuller
David St. John
Dutchess Samuel A. Barker Federalist
George Bloom
Derick A. Brinckerhoff
Ebenezer Haight Federalist
Benajah Thompson Dem.-Rep.
Jesse Thompson Federalist
Essex Benjamin Pond* Dem.-Rep.
Genesee William Ramsey* Dem.-Rep.
Greene James Gale Federalist
Eliakim Reed Federalist
Herkimer Aaron Budlong* Dem.-Rep.
John M. Petrie* Dem.-Rep.
Westel Willoughby, Jr.* Dem.-Rep.
Jefferson David I. Andrus Dem.-Rep.
Corlis Hinds Dem.-Rep.
Kings Jeremiah Johnson[4] Federalist
Lewis Judah Barnes
Madison Oliver Brown Federalist
John W. Bulkley* Federalist
David Van Horne Federalist
Montgomery Daniel Cady Federalist
John Fay Dem.-Rep.
John Greene Federalist
Richard Van Horne[5] Federalist
New York John P. Anthony
Joseph Constant
Francis Cooper* Dem.-Rep.
James Fairlie Dem.-Rep.
Thomas Farmar*
Frederick Jenkins
Caleb Pell
Nathan Sanford Dem.-Rep.
Arthur Smith Dem.-Rep.
Solomon Townsend*
Beekman M. Van Buren
Niagara Archibald S. Clarke Dem.-Rep. also Surrogate of Niagara County
Oneida Joel Bristol
James Dean Sr.
David Ostrom Federalist
John Storrs Federalist
Benjamin Wright*
Onondaga Jacobus Dupuy Dem.-Rep.
Asahel Minor Dem.-Rep.
Barnet Mooney Dem.-Rep.
Ontario Micah Brooks Dem.-Rep.
Samuel Lawrence
Richard Leech
Hugh McNair
William Rogers
Orange Anthony Davis Dem.-Rep.
David Dill Dem.-Rep.
William Ross* Dem.-Rep.
James W. Wilkin* Dem.-Rep. elected Speaker
Otsego Haviland Chase
Roger Kinne
Martin Luce
Henry Scott* Dem.-Rep.
Queens Stephen Carman Federalist
David Kissam Federalist
William Townsend Federalist
Rensselaer Derick Lane
Henry Platt Federalist
Cornelius I. Schermerhorn Federalist
Israel Shepard
Richmond David Mersereau* Dem.-Rep.
Rockland Samuel G. Verbryck* Dem.-Rep.
St. Lawrence Alexander Richards
Saratoga Nehemiah Cande
Salmon Child* Dem.-Rep.
David Rogers Dem.-Rep.
Daniel L. Van Antwerp Dem.-Rep.
Schoharie John Ingold Jr. Federalist
John Rice Federalist
Seneca James McCall
Suffolk Mills Phillips
Abraham Rose
Daniel T. Terry
Tioga Emanuel Coryell* Federalist
Ulster Joshua Dumond Federalist
Peter Lefevre Federalist
Cornelius Low
William Swart Federalist
Washington Kitchel Bishop* Dem.-Rep.
James Hill* Dem.-Rep.
Alexander Livingston Dem.-Rep.
Roger Skinner Dem.-Rep.
Reuben Whallon Dem.-Rep.
Westchester William Barker Federalist
Abraham Odell Federalist
Samuel Youngs Federalist


  • Clerk: Daniel Rodman
  • Sergeant-at-Arms: Thomas Donnelly
  • Doorkeeper: Benjamin Whipple


  1. ^ The Anti-Federalists called themselves "Republicans." However, at the same time, the Federalists called them "Democrats" which was meant to be pejorative. After some time both terms got more and more confused, and sometimes used together as "Democratic Republicans" which later historians have adopted (with a hyphen) to describe the party from the beginning, to avoid confusion with both the later established and still existing Democratic and Republican parties.
  2. ^ see Hammond, pg. 219f
  3. ^ Nathan Smith (ca. 1769-1836), of Fairfield, First Judge of the Herkimer County Court 1814-1821; see bio in A History of Herkimer County by Nathaniel S. Benton (pages 357ff)
  4. ^ Jeremiah Johnson (1766-1852), brother of Jeromus Johnson
  5. ^ Richard Van Horne (b. ca. 1770, d. March 12, 1823 Danube)


This page was last edited on 15 June 2019, at 02:58
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