Samuel Powel

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Samuel Powel (1738 – September 29, 1793) was a colonial and post-colonial mayor of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and graduated in 1759 from the College of Philadelphia (now the University of Pennsylvania). He served as mayor from 1775–1776 and 1789–1790, the office having lain vacant in the interim. He was a member of the Pennsylvania State Senate from 1790 to 1793.[1]

Powel was an early member of the American Philosophical Society and a trustee of the College of Philadelphia (now the University of Pennsylvania).

Personal life[edit]

On August 7, 1769, he married Elizabeth Willing, was the daughter of Philadelphia mayor Charles Willing and Ann Shippen, and a sister of Philadelphia mayor and Continental Congressman Thomas Willing, the business partner of Robert Morris.

Powel died in the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793 on September 29, 1793, in Philadelphia, where he is interred at Christ Church Burial Ground.

Powel House[edit]

Samuel Powel's house, at 244 South 3rd Street, is a house museum run by the Philadelphia Society for the Preservation of Landmarks. A Georgian city house built by Charles Stedman in 1765, Powel expanded and embellished it around 1770, with carved woodwork and ornate plaster ceilings.

George and Martha Washington were friends of the Powels, and lived next door from November 1781 to March 1782, following the Battle of Yorktown. At the close of Washington's presidency, Mrs. Powel bought some of the furniture from the President's House in Philadelphia. The house museum owns a set of china that was a gift from Martha Washington.

The rear parlor was removed from the house in 1921, and is now at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.[2] The ballroom was removed from the house in 1925, and is now at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Both rooms have been replicated at the house museum.[3]

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Political offices
Preceded by
Samuel Rhoads
Mayor of Philadelphia
1775–1776
Succeeded by
vacant
Preceded by
vacant
Mayor of Philadelphia
1789–1790
Succeeded by
Samuel Miles