Collector of the Port of New York

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The Collector of Customs at the Port of New York, most often referred to as Collector of the Port of New York, sometimes also as Collector of Customs for the Port of New York or (erroneously) Collector of Customs for the District of New York, was a federal officer who was in charge of the collection of import duties on foreign goods that entered the United States by ship at the Port of New York.


The first Collector, John Lamb, was appointed by the Congress of the Confederation in 1784. Afterwards, the Collectors were appointed by the U.S. President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

The office was described as "the prize plum of Federal patronage not only in this State but perhaps in the country, outside of positions in the Cabinet."[1] The annual salary in 1920 was $12,000 plus about $8,000 in fees.[2] The position was abolished in 1966, with the last Collector, Joseph P. Kelly, kept on as a consultant some time after.[3]

List of Collectors[edit]

A private act of the 58th Congress in March, 1904,[14] indemnified James T. Kilbreth (posthumously), George R. Bidwell, and Nevada N. Stranahan as collectors of customs for the district and port of New York for the losses through embezzlement by Byram W. Winters, a customs service clerk. Stranahan received a refund in the sum of $8,821.44 from the federal government, having personally settled the entire amount of the fraud.


  1. ^ a b "George W. Aldridge Dies As He Golfs At Westchester Club - Collector of Port, 65, and Seemingly Hale, Stricken WIth Apoplexy - Sinks Without a Word - Charles D. Hilles and George Sweeny Near Rochester Leader as Death Comes - Ends Picturesque Career - Last Survivor of Big Three, Including Platt and Hendricks - Body to Be Taken Home Today". New York Times. June 14, 1922. Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  2. ^ "Open Season Now For Job Hunters - Local Republican Leaders Preparing to Fill Offices Under New Administration - Many Fine Federal Plums - Scores of Places Under State Rule Will Also Fall to Faithful Party Workers". New York Times. November 9, 1920. Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  3. ^ Bamberger, Werner (June 19, 1966). "New Chief Cites Customs Aim Here - Stramiello Declares He Will Strive to Improve Service". New York Times. 
  4. ^ "Collector Hendricks Now; Mr. Fassett's Successor Sworn In And In Charge. He Looks Through The Departments Intent On "Learning The Business" - Rumors Of Changes - Other Custom House Matters". New York Times. September 29, 1891. 
  5. ^ "Francis Hendricks, Politician, Dies At 86 - Former Republican Leader of Central New York and ex-State Senator". New York Times. June 10, 1920. Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  6. ^ "New-York Offices Filled - James T. Kilbreth Collector , Walter H. Bunn Appraiser". New York Times. July 29, 1893. p. 1. Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  7. ^ "Appointments By Bidwell - New Collector of the Port Begins Work - Joseph J. Couch Is Special Deputy". The New York Times. July 15, 1897. 
  8. ^ "Monthly Bulletin - The Federal Service". Good Government: Official Journal of the National Civil Service Reform League. 30 (11): 99. November 1913. Retrieved 1 May 2011. 
  9. ^ "Mitchel In Office As Port Collector Loeb, Retiring, Wishes Him Well - McAneny and Steers There as He Is Sworn In - Still in Mayoralty Fight - Politicians Say His Federal Appointment Can't Keep Him Out and Will Help Him". New York Times. June 8, 1913. p. C4. Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  10. ^ "Malone Nominated As Port Collector - O'Gorman's Son-in-Law to Succeed Mitchel - Senator, Avoiding Comment, Tells a Story - Wilson's Personal Choice - Appointment Thought to Show Satisfaction at Tammany's Defeat - Splendid Selection, Says Mitchel". The New York Times. November 11, 1913. 
  11. ^ "Growth Of New York Port; Collector Newton Says This Is World's Greatest Commerce Centre". New York Times. June 28, 1918. 
  12. ^ "Henry C. Stuart, Customs Aide - Assistant Collector of Port of New York for 15 Years Is Dead Here at 73 - In U.S. Service 47 Years - Considered Authority on Laws of His Department - Honored on Retirement in '37". New York Times. May 14, 1938. p. 15. Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  13. ^ "Philip Elting, Once Collector of Port - Chairman of Ulster County Republicans Since 1904 Held Post Here, 1923 to 1933 - Dies in Kingston at 77 - Descendant of 9 Generations of Ulster County Residents - Leader at Conventions". New York Times. July 21, 1941. p. 15. Retrieved 20 August 2016. 
  14. ^ s:Page:United States Statutes at Large Volume 33 Part 2.djvu/151 United States Statutes at Large, Volume 33, Part 2, Chapter 721.