90th New York State Legislature

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90th New York State Legislature
Old State Capitol at Albany NY.jpg
The Old State Capitol (1879)

Duration: January 1 – December 31, 1867

President of the State Senate: Lt. Gov. Stewart L. Woodford (R)
Temporary President of the State Senate: Charles J. Folger (R), from January 31;
John O'Donnell (R), on April 1;
Henry C. Murphy (D), on April 10
Speaker of the State Assembly: Edmund L. Pitts (R)
Members: 32 Senators
128 Assemblymen
Senate Majority: Republican (27-5)
Assembly Majority: Republican (83-45)

Sessions
1st: January 1 – April 20, 1867
<89th 91st>

The 90th New York State Legislature, consisting of the New York State Senate and the New York State Assembly, met from January 1 to April 20, 1867, during the third year of Reuben E. Fenton's governorship, in Albany.

Background[edit]

Under the provisions of the New York Constitution of 1846, 32 Senators and 128 assemblymen were elected in single-seat districts; senators for a two-year term, assemblymen for a one-year term. The senatorial districts were made up of entire counties, except New York County (four districts) and Kings County (two districts). The Assembly districts were made up of entire towns, or city wards,[1] forming a contiguous area, all within the same county.

On April 16, 1866, the Legislature re-apportioned the Assembly seats per county. Allegany, Chenango, Herkimer, Jefferson, Livingston, Steuben and Suffolk counties lost one seat each; Erie County gained one seat, Kings County gained two seats; and New York County gained four seats.[2]

On April 25, 1866, the Legislature re-apportioned the Senate districts.[3]

At this time there were two major political parties: the Republican Party and the Democratic Party. During the American Civil War many War Democrats had joined the Republicans, and after the end of the war the parties re-aligned, leaving the Democrats in a minority. To increase their ranks, the Democrats now proposed to form a "Conservative Union" of Democrats and Conservative Republicans, and nominated a state ticket with Democrat John T. Hoffman for Governor, and Republican Robert H. Pruyn for Lieutenant Governor.

Elections[edit]

The New York state election, 1866 was held on November 6. Gov. Reuben E. Fenton was re-elected. Stewart L. Woodford (R) was elected Lieutenant Governor, and the other two statewide elective offices up for election were carried by the Republicans too. The approximate party strength at this election, as expressed by the vote for Governor, was: Republicans 366,000 and Conservative Union 352,000. According to the Constitution of 1846, twenty years after its elaboration the electorate was asked if they wanted a Constitutional Convention to be held, which was answered in the affirmative.

Sessions[edit]

The Legislature met for the regular session at the Old State Capitol in Albany on January 1, 1867; and adjourned on April 20.

Edmund L. Pitts (R) was elected Speaker with 80 votes against 43 for Jarvis Lord (D).

On January 15, the Legislature elected Roscoe Conkling (R) to succeed Ira Harris as U.S. Senator from New York for a six-year term beginning on March 4, 1867.

On January 25, the State Senate concluded the trial of George W. Smith, Judge of the Oneida County Court, and removed Smith from office.

On January 31, Charles J. Folger was re-elected President pro tempore of the State Senate.

On April 1, John O'Donnell (R) was elected President pro tempore "for the evening."

On April 10, Henry C. Murphy (D) was elected President pro tempore "for the day."

On April 23, the delegates to the Constitutional Convention were elected, resulting in a Republican majority.

On June 4, the Constitutional Convention met at Albany. William A. Wheeler was chosen President, and Luther Caldwell Secretary. On the opening day, one of the delegates, Assemblyman L. Harris Hiscock was murdered at Stanwix Hall (a hotel in Albany).

On September 23, the Constitutional Convention adjourned.

On November 5, the New York state election, 1867, was held. All eight statewide elective offices up for election were carried by the Democrats, and a Democratic majority was elected to the Assembly.

On November 12, the Constitutional Convention met again, and adjourned sine die on February 28, 1868. How to put the proposed amendments before the electorate was then debated throughout the 91st and the 92nd Legislatures, and all amendments, except the re-organization of the judicial system, were eventually rejected by the voters at the New York state election, 1869.

State Senate[edit]

Districts[edit]

Note: The Senators in the 90th Legislature had been elected in November 1865 for a two-year term under the apportionment of 1857, as listed below. Although the 89th Legislature (1866) had re-apportioned the Senate districts, the first election under the new apportionment was held in November 1867, to elect the senators who sat in the 91st Legislature.

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.

Members[edit]

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

District Senator Party Notes
1st Nicholas B. La Bau* Republican
2nd Henry R. Pierson* Republican
3rd Henry C. Murphy* Democrat on April 10, elected President pro tempore;
also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention
4th Benjamin Wood* Democrat
5th Charles G. Cornell* Democrat
6th Abraham Lent* Republican
7th Thomas Murphy* Republican
8th Edmund G. Sutherland* Democrat
9th Henry R. Low* Republican
10th George Chambers* Democrat
11th Edward G. Wilbor* Republican
12th James Gibson* Republican
13th Lorenzo D. Collins* Republican
14th Charles Stanford* Republican
15th Adam W. Kline* Republican
16th Moss K. Platt* Republican
17th Abel Godard* Republican
18th John O'Donnell* Republican on April 1, elected President pro tempore
19th Samuel Campbell* Republican
20th George H. Andrews* Republican
21st John J. Wolcott* Republican
22nd Andrew D. White* Republican
23rd James Barnett* Republican
24th Ezra Cornell* Republican
25th Stephen K. Williams* Republican
26th Charles J. Folger* Republican on January 31, elected President pro tempore;
also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention
27th John I. Nicks Republican elected to fill vacancy, in place of Stephen T. Hayt;
until March 1867, also Mayor of Elmira
28th Thomas Parsons* Republican
29th Richard Crowley* Republican
30th Wolcott J. Humphrey* Republican
31st David S. Bennett* Republican
32nd Walter L. Sessions* Republican

Employees[edit]

  • Clerk: James Terwilliger
  • Sergeant-at-Arms: Arthur Hotchkiss
  • Assistant Sergeant-at-Arms: Sanders Wilson
  • Doorkeeper: Herman B. Young
  • First Assistant Doorkeeper: Frank M. Jones
  • Second Assistant Doorkeeper: Nathaniel Saxton
  • Third Assistant Doorkeeper: August Wagner

State Assembly[edit]

Assemblymen[edit]

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

Party affiliations follow the vote for Speaker.

District Assemblymen Party Notes
Albany 1st Hugh Conger Republican
2nd Henry Smith Republican also D.A. of Albany Co.
3rd Alexander Robertson Democrat
4th Oscar F. Potter Republican
Allegany Charles M. Crandall Republican
Broome James Van Valkenburgh Republican
Cattaraugus 1st Heman G. Button Republican
2nd William E. Hunt Republican
Cayuga 1st Homer N. Lockwood* Republican
2nd John L. Parker* Republican
Chautauqua 1st Joseph B. Fay* Republican
2nd Orson Stiles* Republican
Chemung George W. Buck Republican
Chenango Frederick Juliand Republican
Clinton Smith M. Weed* Democrat also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention
Columbia 1st Jacob H. Duntz Republican
2nd Stephen H. Wendover Republican
Cortland Horatio Ballard Republican also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention
Delaware 1st Joshua Smith Republican
2nd George C. Gibbs Republican
Dutchess 1st Augustus A. Brush Republican
2nd Mark D. Wilber* Republican
Erie 1st Charles W. Hinson Democrat
2nd William Williams* Democrat
3rd Roswell L. Burrows Republican
4th Alpheus Prince Democrat
5th Joseph H. Plumb Republican
Essex Palmer E. Havens Republican
Franklin James W. Kimball* Republican
Fulton and Hamilton Joseph Covell* Republican
Genesee Henry F. Tarbox Republican
Greene Thomas A. Briggs Democrat
Herkimer Seth M. Richmond Republican
Jefferson 1st LaFayette J. Bigelow Republican
2nd Albert D. Shaw Republican
Kings 1st Patrick Burns Democrat
2nd Theodore Hinsdale Republican
3rd Patrick Keady Democrat
4th Stephen Haynes Democrat
5th Caleb F. Buckley Democrat
6th John Raber Democrat
7th Henry M. Dixon Democrat unsuccessfully contested by Ira Buckman Jr.[4]
8th John Oakey* Republican
9th John C. Jacobs Democrat
Lewis Henry A. Phillips Republican
Livingston Jacob A. Mead Republican
Madison 1st Bushrod E. Hoppin Republican
2nd Benjamin F. Bruce Republican
Monroe 1st Jarvis Lord Democrat
2nd Henry Cribben Republican
3rd Abner I. Wood* Republican
Montgomery Abraham Hoffman Republican
New York 1st Michael C. Murphy Democrat
2nd Constantine Donoho* Democrat
3rd Daniel O'Reilly Democrat
4th John J. Blair Democrat
5th Charles Blauvelt Democrat
6th John Siegerson Democrat
7th Frank A. Ransom Democrat unsuccessfully contested by Edward Mitchell[5]
8th James Reed Democrat
9th Henry Rogers Democrat also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention
10th Owen Murphy Democrat
11th John V. Gridley Republican
12th Henry Woltman Democrat
13th Bernard Cregan Democrat
14th Thomas J. Creamer* Democrat
15th Alexander Frear* Democrat
16th James Irving Democrat
17th Wilson Berryman* Republican
18th Leander Buck Democrat
19th John E. Develin Democrat
20th Patrick Russell Democrat
21st Henry W. Genet Democrat
Niagara 1st Elisha Moody Republican
2nd William Pool Republican
Oneida 1st Levi Blakeslee Republican
2nd Ellis H. Roberts Republican
3rd George H. Sanford Democrat
4th Leander W. Fiske Republican
Onondaga 1st Daniel P. Wood* Republican
2nd L. Harris Hiscock Republican also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention;
murdered on June 4, 1867
3rd Samuel Candee Republican
Ontario 1st Hiram Schutt* Republican
2nd Samuel H. Torrey Republican
Orange 1st Lewis B. Halsey Republican
2nd George W. Millspaugh* Democrat
Orleans Edmund L. Pitts* Republican elected Speaker
Oswego 1st DeWitt C. Littlejohn* Republican
2nd William H. Rice* Republican
3rd Charles McKinney Republican
Otsego 1st Edgar B. Clarke Republican
2nd Sheffield Harrington* Republican
Putnam Lewis H. Gregory Democrat contested; seat vacated on January 16[6]
Stephen Baker Republican seated on January 16
Queens 1st Francis Skillman Democrat
2nd William B. Wilson Democrat
Rensselaer 1st William Gurley Republican
2nd Marshall F. White* Republican
3rd Eleazer Wooster* Republican
Richmond Nathaniel J. Wyeth Democrat
Rockland James Suffern Democrat
St. Lawrence 1st George M. Gleason* Republican
2nd William R. Chamberlain* Republican
3rd Richmond Bicknell Republican
Saratoga 1st Truman G. Younglove* Republican
2nd Austin L. Reynolds* Republican
Schenectady Charles G. Ellis Republican
Schoharie William S. Clark Democrat Assemblyman-elect Daniel Shaver died;
Clark elected to fill vacancy
Schuyler Samuel M. Barker* Republican
Seneca Samuel R. Welles Democrat
Steuben 1st William B. Boyd* Republican
2nd Christian Minier Republican
Suffolk Alfred Wagstaff Jr. Republican
Sullivan David G. Starr Democrat Assemblyman-elect Alfred J. Baldwin died;
Starr elected to fill vacancy on December 18, 1866
Tioga Oliver A. Barstow Republican
Tompkins John H. Selkreg Republican
Ulster 1st John Maxwell Republican
2nd Jacob LeFever Republican
3rd John G. Baker Democrat
Warren Columbus Gill Republican
Washington 1st Thomas Shiland Republican
2nd Adolphus F. Hitchcock Republican also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention
Wayne 1st John Vandenberg* Republican
2nd Ornon Archer Republican also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention
Westchester 1st Samuel M. Purdy Democrat
2nd George J. Penfield Democrat
3rd David W. Travis Republican
Wyoming William Bristol Republican
Yates Charles S. Hoyt Republican

Employees[edit]

  • Clerk: Luther Caldwell
  • Sergeant-at-Arms: John H. Kemper
  • Doorkeeper: J. B. Davis
  • First Assistant Doorkeeper: Charles G. Gardiner
  • Second Assistant Doorkeeper: James Tanner

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Except New York City where the wards were apportioned into election districts, and then some whole wards and some election districts of other wards were gerrymandered together into Assembly districts.
  2. ^ Laws of the State of New York (89th session) (1866; pg. 1301f, Chap. 607 "AN ACT for the apportionment of the Members of Assembly of this State")
  3. ^ Laws of the State of New York (89th session) (1866; pg. 1762ff, Chap. 805 "AN ACT to organize the Senate Districts of the State")
  4. ^ Buckman had been defeated for re-election, and claimed that Dixon was not a United States citizen. Dixon showed his certificate of naturalization to the Committee on Elections, and retained his seat; see A Compilation of Cases of Contested Elections to Seats in the Assembly of the State of New York (1871; pg. 397f)
  5. ^ see A Compilation of Cases of Contested Elections to Seats in the Assembly of the State of New York (1871; pg. 399ff)
  6. ^ see A Compilation of Cases of Contested Elections to Seats in the Assembly of the State of New York (1871; pg. 401–407)

Sources[edit]