50th New York State Legislature

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50th New York State Legislature
49th 51st
Old State Capitol at Albany NY.jpg
The Old State Capitol (1879)
Jurisdiction New York, United States
Term January 1 – December 31, 1827
Members 32
President Lt. Gov. Nathaniel Pitcher (Buckt.)
Party control Bucktail
Members 128
Speaker Erastus Root (Buckt.)
Party control Bucktail
1st January 2 – April 17, 1827
2nd September 11 – December 4, 1827

The 50th New York State Legislature, consisting of the New York State Senate and the New York State Assembly, met from January 2 to December 4, 1827, during the third year of DeWitt Clinton's second tenure as Governor of New York, in Albany.


Under the provisions of the New York Constitution of 1821, 32 Senators were elected on general tickets in eight 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.

On April 18, 1826, the Legislature amended the senatorial district apportionment: Delaware Co. was transferred from the 6th to the 2nd District; and Steuben Co. was transferred from the 8th to the 6th District. They also amended the Assembly district apportionment: Chautauqua, Erie, New York, St. Lawrence and Tompkins gained one seat each; and Hamilton/Montgomery, Orange, Queens, Ulster and Washington lost one seat each.

State Senator George Brayton resigned on April 18, 1826, leaving a vacancy in the Fifth District. State Senator Jedediah Morgan resigned due to ill health, leaving a vacancy in the Seventh District.

At this time, the Democratic-Republican Party[1] was split into two factions: the "Bucktails" (led by U.S. Senator Martin Van Buren) and the "Clintonians" (supporters of Gov. DeWitt Clinton).

On September 21, 1826, the Clintonian state convention met at Utica; Pierre Van Cortlandt was Chairman; and Samuel Stevens and Simon G. Throop were Secretaries. The delegates nominated Gov. DeWitt Clinton for re-election; and Henry Huntington for lieutenant governor.

On October 4, 1826, the Bucktail state convention met at Herkimer; James L. Hogeboom was Chairman; and David E. Evans and Assembly Clerk Edward Livingston were Secretaries. The delegates nominated Circuit Judge William B. Rochester for governor; and Nathaniel Pitcher for lieutenant governor.

On September 11, 1826, began the affair surrounding the abduction, and probable murder, of William Morgan which led to the foundation of the Anti-Masonic Party in 1828.


The State election was held from November 6 to 8, 1826. Gov. DeWitt Clinton was re-elected, and Nathaniel Pitcher was elected lieutenant governor; for the first time in state history, the governor and the lieutenant governor were elected from opposing tickets.[2]

Robert Bogardus (1st D.), John McCarty (3rd D.), Duncan McMartin Jr. (4th D.), Truman Enos (5th D.), Thomas G. Waterman (6th D.), William M. Oliver (7th D.), Charles H. Carroll (8th D.); and Assemblyman Benjamin Woodward (2nd D.) were elected to full terms in the Senate. Charles Dayan (5th D.) and Victory Birdseye (7th D.) were elected to fill the vacancies. Bogardus and McMartin were Clintonians, the other eight were Bucktails.


The Legislature met for the regular session at the Old State Capitol in Albany on January 2, 1827, and adjourned on April 17.

Erastus Root (Buckt.) was elected Speaker with 74 votes against 33 for Francis Granger (Clint.).

On February 6, the Legislature re-elected U.S. Senator Martin Van Buren to a second term of six years.

On February 20, Abraham Keyser, Jr. was re-elected New York State Treasurer.

The Legislature met for a special session on September 11; and adjourned on December 4. This session was called to debate the report of the Board of Revisers of the State Statutes, originally appointed in 1824. At this time, the members of the Board were John Duer, Benjamin F. Butler and John C. Spencer.

The Legislature enacted that 34 presidential electors should be elected by popular ballot in districts (corresponding to the congressional districts), and these 34 then should co-opt two electors-at-large (to complete the number of electors which is the sum of congressmen and U.S. senators).

State Senate[edit]


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. Benjamin Woodward changed from the Assembly to the Senate.

District Senators Term left Party Notes
First David Gardiner* 1 year
Cadwallader D. Colden* 2 years Clintonian resigned on August 30, 1827
Joshua Smith* 3 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Robert Bogardus 4 years Clintonian
Second William Nelson* 1 year
Wells Lake* 2 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Peter R. Livingston* 3 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Benjamin Woodward* 4 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail also Postmaster of Mount Hope
Third Jacob Haight* 1 year
Richard McMichael* 2 years Clintonian
Ambrose L. Jordan* 3 years Clintonian until October 1827 also Recorder of the City of Hudson
John McCarty 4 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Fourth Silas Wright, Jr.* 1 year Dem.-Rep./Bucktail in November 1826, elected to the 20th U. S. Congress, and took his
seat on December 3, 1827, thus vacating his seat in the Legislature
John Crary* 2 years Clintonian
John L. Viele* 3 years Clintonian
Duncan McMartin Jr. 4 years Clintonian
Fifth Perley Keyes* 1 year Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Charles Dayan 2 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail elected to fill vacancy, in place of George Brayton
Charles Stebbins* 3 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Truman Enos 4 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Sixth Latham A. Burrows* 1 year
Stukely Ellsworth* 2 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Peter Hager 2d* 3 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Thomas G. Waterman 4 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Seventh Victory Birdseye 1 year Dem.-Rep./Bucktail elected to fill vacancy, in place of Jedediah Morgan;
also D.A. of Onondaga Co.
John C. Spencer* 2 years Clintonian
Truman Hart* 3 years Clintonian
William M. Oliver 4 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail also First Judge of the Yates County Court
Eighth James McCall* 1 year Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Samuel Wilkeson* 2 years Clintonian
Ethan B. Allen* 3 years Clintonian
Charles H. Carroll 4 years Dem.-Rep./Bucktail also First Judge of the Livingston County Court


State Assembly[edit]


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 Isaac Hamilton
John Haswell
Henry Stone
Allegany Asa Lee Davidson
Broome Peter Robinson*
Cattaraugus John A. Bryan Clintonian unsuccessfully contested by James McGlashan[3]
Cayuga Gardner Kortright
Andrews Preston
Peter Yawger
Chautauqua Samuel A. Brown
Elial T. Foote*
Chenango James Birdsall Clintonian
Joseph Juliand
Augustus C. Welch
Clinton Bela Edgerton
Columbia Jacob P. Mesick
Isaac Mills
Simon Rockefeller
Cortland Cephas Comstock
Nathan Dayton
Delaware Erastus Root* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail elected Speaker
John Thompson
Dutchess Egbert Cary
Jacob C. Elmendorf
Samuel B. Halsey
Henry A. Livingston
Erie David Burt
Oziel Smith
Essex John Hoffnagle Clintonian
Franklin James Campbell
Genesee Josiah Churchill*
Shubeal Dunham
John B. Skinner Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Greene Perkins King
William Tuttle
Hamilton and
Howland Fish Clintonian
Lawrence Gros Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Nathaniel Westcott
Herkimer Frederick P. Bellinger
Daniel C. Henderson
Richard Smith 2d
Jefferson David W. Bucklin* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Alpheus S. Greene
Daniel Wardwell* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Kings Clarence D. Sackett
Lewis John W. Martin
Livingston William H. Spencer*
Felix Tracy
Madison Sylvester Beecher
James B. Eldredge
Lemuel White
Monroe Peter Price
Abelard Reynolds
Joseph Sibley
New York Philip Brasher* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Abraham Cargill
Jonathan I. Coddington
Gilbert Conant
Isaac Minard* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Joseph Piggot
Jonathan E. Robinson* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Alpheus Sherman* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Lemuel Smith
Thomas R. Smith
Charles Town
Niagara John Garnsey
Oneida John Billings
Winthrop H. Chandler
Benjamin P. Johnson
John Parker
Theodore Sill* Clintonian
Onondaga Chauncey Betts*
Aaron Burt
Charles Jackson
Daniel Moseley Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Ontario Francis Granger* Clintonian
Lemuel Morse
Nathan Parke
Orange William W. Crawford
William Ecker
Nathaniel Jones
Orleans Abraham Cantine
Oswego Orris Hart
Otsego William Campbell
John Judson
Sherman Page
Samuel Starkweather
Putnam Henry B. Cowles* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Queens Thomas Tredwell*
Rensselaer Jeremiah Dauchy
John DeFreest Jr.
Reuben Halsted
Henry Platt
Richmond Abraham Cole
Rockland Levi Sherwood
St. Lawrence Baron S. Doty* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Silvester Gilbert
Saratoga Nicholas Emigh Jr.
Howell Gardner
John Gilchrist
Schenectady Alonzo C. Paige Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Schoharie Samuel Baldwin
William Mann
Seneca Daniel Rhoad Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Daniel Scott*
Steuben Paul C. Cook
George McClure
Suffolk George L. Conklin
Samuel Strong
Sullivan Hiram Bennett
Tioga Gamaliel H. Barstow Clintonian
David Williams
Tompkins Nathan Benson*
Benjamin Jennings
John Sayler
Ulster Jasper Cropsey
Jacob Trumpbour
Warren John Hay Jr. Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Washington John McDonald
Peter J. H. Myers
Samuel Stevens Clintonian
Wayne Thomas Armstrong previously a member from Seneca Co.;
also Supervisor of Butler
Jonathan Boynton
Westchester John Fisher
Nathaniel Montross
Joseph Scofield* Dem.-Rep./Bucktail
Yates James C. Robinson


  • Clerk: Edward Livingston
  • Sergeant-at-Arms: John C. Ellis
  • Doorkeeper: William Seely
  • Assistant Doorkeeper: James D. Scollard


  1. ^ Originally, 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. ^ This happened again in 1846, 1850, 1906 and 1924, but is now impossible. Since 1954, New Yorkers cast a single joint vote for both offices.
  3. ^ see A Compilation of Cases of Contested Elections to Seats in the Assembly of the State of New York (1871; pg. 66–73)
  4. ^ James Kenyon was certified as elected, but was ineligible, being a Quaker minister. Under the New York Constitution, no minister of the gospel, of any denomination whatsoever, could then hold any civil or military office. The next most voted Assembly candidate Edward Allen claimed the seat, but was not admitted; see A Compilation of Cases of Contested Elections to Seats in the Assembly of the State of New York (1871; pg. 64ff)