|1st "Governor of New Jersey|
August 31, 1776 – July 25, 1790
as Royal Governor
November 30, 1723|
"Albany, "Province of New York, "British America
July 25, 1790 (aged 66)|
"Elizabeth, New Jersey, U.S.
|Resting place||"Green-Wood Cemetery, "Brooklyn, New York|
(m. 1745; her death 1789)
|Children||13, including "Brockholst|
Catherine Van Brugh
|Relatives||See "Livingston family|
|"Alma mater||"Yale College|
William Livingston (November 30, 1723 – July 25, 1790) was an American politician who served as the "Governor of New Jersey (1776–1790) during the "American Revolutionary War and was a signer of the "United States Constitution.
Livingston was born in "Albany in the "Province of New York on November 30, 1723. He was the son of "Philip Livingston (1686–1749), the 2nd Lord of "Livingston Manor, and Catherine Van Brugh, the only child of "Albany mayor "Pieter Van Brugh (1666–1740). His older siblings included "Robert Livingston (1708–1790), 3rd Lord of Livingston Manor, "Peter Van Brugh Livingston (1710–1792), "New York State Treasurer, and "Philip Livingston (1716–1778), a member of the "New York State Senate.
Livingston received his early education from local schools and tutors. At age 14, Livingston was sent to live for a year with an Anglican missionary among the Iroquois Indians in the "Mohawk Valley. He enrolled at "Yale College upon his return in 1738 and graduated in 1741. He went on to New York City, where he studied law and became a law clerk for "James Alexander and "William Smith.
He was admitted to the bar in 1748 and began his practice in "New York City. In 1752, along with "William Smith and "John Morin Scott he founded a weekly journal, the Independent Reflector. The Reflector was New York's first serial non-newspaper publication and the only one being published in British North America at the time. It was used as a platform for challenging the powerful De Lancey/Anglican faction, most notably over the founding of "King's College. Publication of the Reflector ceased with the fifty-second issue after political pressure was brought to bear upon its printer, "James Parker.
In 1772, he moved to "Elizabethtown (today "Elizabeth, New Jersey), where he rented a house in town. A young "Alexander Hamilton lived here with Livingston for nearly a year while he attended grammar school. Livingston started construction of a large country home to house his growing family. The house, known as "Liberty Hall, still stands today. After attaining considerable influence amongst the local patriots, Livingston was elected to serve as one of New Jersey's delegates to the "Continental Congress. He served from July 1774 to June 1776. In October 1775, he was commissioned a "brigadier general of the "New Jersey Militia.
In August 1776, he was elected "Governor of New Jersey and was reelected to the office each year until his death in 1790. For much of the time between 1776 and 1779, the family was located in "Parsippany for safety. Liberty Hall was frequently visited by British troops or naval forces since there was a substantial reward for Livingston's capture. The family returned in 1779 to begin restoring their looted home. He was elected a Fellow of the "American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1782.
Livingston led the New Jersey Delegation to the "1787 Constitutional Convention in "Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and was one of the signers of the "Constitution. He was appointed "United States Minister to the Netherlands in 1788 by U.S. Congress but turn down the proposition.
Livingston married Susannah French (1723–1789) in New Jersey in 1745. She was the daughter of landowner, Philip French III and Susanna ("née Brockholst) French. Her paternal grandparents were "Phillip French, the 27th "Mayor of New York City, and Annetje (née Philipse) French (the daughter of "Frederick Philipse). Her maternal grandparents were Susanna Maria Brockholst and "Anthony Brockholst, an acting "Governor of Colonial New York under Sir "Edmund Andros. They went on to have 13 children, including:
Livingston's daughter, Sarah, was born in 1756 and was educated at home in penmanship, English grammar, the Bible, and classic literature. At a time when women were usually relegated to the kitchen, she was brought up to be politically aware, even serving at times as her father’s secretary. who married "John Jay at the age of 17 and became United States "First Lady (age 22) while Jay served as the President of the "Continental Congress from 1778–1779. Sarah accompanied "John Jay to Spain and then "Paris where he, along with "John Adams, "Benjamin Franklin, and "Henry Laurens negotiated the "Treaty of Paris. She is credited with writing the celebratory Treaty of Paris dinner toast. When Sarah and John returned to New York, Jay was appointed U.S. Foreign Secretary, and her Parisian training came in handy, as she and her husband established the custom of weekly dinners for the diplomatic corps and other guests in the U.S. capital city of New York. Sarah would go on to serve in her hospitality role as the wife of the first "Chief Justice of the United States and First Lady of New York.
In 1747, Livingston wrote and published a long pastoral poem entitled, "Philosophic Solitude, or the Choice of a Rural Life". One of the first successful original poems written by an American colonist, it was anthologized numerous times into the 19th century. In 1754, Livingston also played a key role in founding the "New York Society Library, which is still in existence over a quarter of a millennium later.
The "Livingston campus of Rutgers University New Brunswick also was given its name in his honor.
| "Governor of New Jersey