United States House of Representatives elections in New York, 1821
The 1821 United States House of Representatives elections in New York were held from April 24 to 26, 1821, to elect 27 U.S. Representatives to represent the State of New York in the United States House of Representatives of the 17th United States Congress.
27 U.S. Representatives had been elected in April 1818 to a term in the 16th United States Congress beginning on March 4, 1819, and ending on March 3, 1821. The previous congressional elections were held usually in even-numbered years, about ten months before the term would start on March 4 of the next year, and about a year and a half before Congress actually met in the following December. This time the congressional elections were moved a year forward, and were held together with the State elections in late April 1821, after the congressional term already had begun, but about half a year before Congress actually met on December 3, 1821.
Except for the split of the 21st District, the geographical area of the congressional districts remained the same as at the previous elections in 1818. Five new counties had been created. Hamilton Co. was split from Montgomery Co. inside the 14th District. Oswego Co. was created from parts of Oneida and Onondaga counties, but the parts remained in their previous congressional districts. On March 9, 1821, the New York State Legislature divided the 21st District in two districts: Ontario Co. and the newly created Monroe Co. remained as the 21st District; the remainder became the new 22nd District, including the new counties of Erie and Livingston.
- The 1st District (two seats) comprising the 1st and 2nd Ward of New York County, and Kings, Queens, Suffolk and Richmond counties.
- The 2nd District (two seats) comprising the other eight wards of New York County.
- The 3rd District comprising Westchester and Rockland counties.
- The 4th District comprising Dutchess County, except the towns of Rhinebeck and Clinton; and Putnam County.
- The 5th District comprising Columbia County; and Rhinebeck and Clinton in Dutchess County.
- The 6th District comprising Orange County.
- The 7th District comprising Ulster and Sullivan counties.
- The 8th District comprising Delaware and Greene counties.
- The 9th District comprising Albany County.
- The 10h District comprising Rensselaer County.
- The 11th District comprising Saratoga County.
- The 12th District (two seats) comprising Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Washington and Warren counties.
- The 13th District comprising Schenectady and Schoharie counties.
- The 14th District comprising Montgomery County and the Town of Danube in Herkimer County.
- The 15th District (two seats) comprising Chenango, Broome and Otsego counties.
- The 16th District comprising Oneida County and the ex-Oneida part of Oswego County.
- The 17th District comprising Herkimer County, except the Town of Danube; and Madison County.
- The 18th District comprising St. Lawrence, Jefferson and Lewis counties.
- The 19th District comprising Onondaga and Cortland counties, and the ex-Onondaga part of Oswego County.
- The 20th District (two seats) comprising Tioga, Steuben, Cayuga, Seneca and Tompkins counties.
- The 21st District comprising Ontario and Monroe counties.
- The 22nd District comprising Genesee, Allegany, Niagara, Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Erie and Livingston counties.
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.
15 Bucktails and 12 Clintonian/Federalists were declared elected. Cadwallader D. Colden (Fed.) successfully contested the election of Peter Sharpe (Buckt.), so that New York was represented by 19 Democratic-Republicans and 8 Federalists in the 17th Congress. The incumbents Wood, Van Rensselaer, Dickinson, Taylor, Pitcher and Tracy were re-elected; the incumbents Gross, Monell, Hall, Richmond and Allen (all Clintonians) were defeated.
Note: It is difficult to ascertain the party affiliation of some of the fusion candidates: At this time the Democratic-Republican Party was already split into two opposing factions: on one side, the supporters of DeWitt Clinton and his Erie Canal project; on the other side, the Bucktails (including the Tammany Hall organization in New York City), led by Martin Van Buren. At the same time, the Federalist Party had already begun to disintegrate, and many of its former members joined either the Bucktails or the Clintonians. However, in Congress both Bucktails and Clintonians aligned with the Democratic-Republicans from the other States. Wood, Colden, Patterson, Ruggles, Van Rensselaer, Dickinson, Kirkland and Sterling were Federalists; Wilkin, McCarty, Taylor, Gross, Gebhard, Monell, Hall, Richmond, Camp, Allen and Tracy were Clintonians.
Aftermath, special elections and contested election
|6th||Charles Borland, Jr.||1,277||John Duer||1,097|
The House of Representatives of the 17th United States Congress met for the first time at the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C., on December 3, 1821, and 24 of the representatives took their seats. Ruggles and Sterling took their seats later, and Peter Sharpe did not appear.
On December 6, 1821, a petition on behalf of Cadwallader D. Colden was presented to contest the election of Peter Sharpe in the 1st District. On December 11, the Committee on Elections submitted its report. They found that in the town of Brookhaven 220 votes had been returned for Cadwallader D. Colden, but the final letter of the name "n" had been misread as an "r" when the election certificate was viewed in the office of the Secretary of State of New York. They also found that in the town of Hempstead 395 votes were returned for "Cadwallader Colden" by mistake, the Queens County Clerk having omitted the middle initial although all these votes had in fact been given for "Cadwallader D. Colden". The Secretary of State of New York, receiving the abovementioned result, issued credentials for Sharpe who never took or claimed the seat. On December 12, the House declared Colden entitled to the seat, and he took it.
On January 14, 1822, Solomon Van Rensselaer resigned his seat to accept an appointment as Postmaster of Albany to replace Solomon Southwick whose financial affairs were in such a messy state that he had defaulted the post-office monies. To fill the vacancy, a special election was held from February 25 to 27, and was won by Stephen Van Rensselaer defeating Ex-Postmaster Southwick. Stephen Van Renssealaer took his seat on March 12, 1822.
|9th||Stephen Van Rensselaer||2,266||Solomon Southwick||499|
- Brig. Gen. Peter S. Van Orden (b. ca. 1762), of Rockland Co., assemblyman 1810, 1811, 1812, 1812-13, 1814 and 1814-15; presidential elector for Monroe/Tompkins in 1816
- De Witt Clinton and the Rise of the People's Men by Craig & Mary L. Hanyan (page 258)
- William Taber, of Dover, assemblyman 1798-99, 1800 and 1804; state senator 1812-1815
- William G. Gillespie, assemblyman 1820-21; First Judge of the Sullivan County Court 1835-1844
- Guert Van Schoonhoven, ran also as a Federalist in 1802
- William Mann, Surrogate of Schoharie Co. 1822-1832; presidential elector in 1824; canal appraiser 1836-1839
- Alvan Stewart (1790-1849), ran for Gov. of New York on the Liberty ticket in 1842 and 1844
- Herman Camp, Sheriff of Seneca Co. Jan-Aug 1817; Sheriff of Tompkins Co. April–June 1817; assemblyman from Tompkins Co. 1820
- Abridgment of the Debates in Congress (Vol. VII; page 215)
- Cases of Contested Elections in Congress 1789 to 1834 compiled by Matthew St. Clair Clarke and David A. Hall (Washington, D.C., 1834; Case XLVII, pages 369ff)
- Southwick had been a Clintonian, but when pressed to pay over the post-office monies, changed sides and joined the Bucktails; soon after he left the Democratic-Republican Party and became an Independent and later an Anti-Mason
- Solomon Southwick, Clerk of the State Assembly 1803, 1804, 1804-05, 1806, part of 1807 and part of 1808; ran for Gov. of New York as an Independent in 1822, and on the Anti-Masonic ticket in 1828
- The New York Civil List compiled in 1858 (see: pg. 66 for district apportionment; pg. 71 for Congressmen)
- Members of the Seventeenth United States Congress
- Election result 1st D. at project "A New Nation Votes", compiled by Phil Lampi, hosted by Tufts University Digital Library [gives 3,961 for Wood; 3,958 for Colden; 3,369 for Sharpe; and 3,326 for Smith; the newspaper editor was not aware of the county clerks mistakes]
- Election result 2nd D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 3rd D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 4th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 5th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 6th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 7th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 8th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 9th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 10th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 11th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 12th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 13th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 14th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 15th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 16th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 17th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 18th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 19th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 20th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 21st D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Election result 22nd D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- Special election result 6th D. at "A New Nation Votes"
- 1822 Special election result 9th D. at "A New Nation Votes"