Frederic de Peyster

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Frederic de Peyster (11 November 1796 in New York City – 17 August 1882 in Tivoli, New York) was a New York City lawyer.


His father, named Frederick and also born in New York City, was a nephew of Arent DePeyster, and fought for the British crown during the American Revolution. After the war, his father emigrated to St. John, New Brunswick, but later returned to the United States. The son graduated from Columbia in 1816, and was admitted to the bar in 1819. In 1820 he was appointed master in chancery. He held the office until 1837, when his judicious investments had so increased his inherited fortune that he was compelled to resign his office and devote himself to the management of his estate.

He was at various periods a trustee of the Bible Society, and served on the boards of management of many charitable and educational institutions, besides giving liberally to their support. He was at different times president of the New York Historical Society, a founder and director of the Home for Incurables, and vice-president of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, founder of the Soldiers' Home erected by the Grand Army of the Republic, and a trustee of the New York Society library. In 1867 he received the degree of LL.D. from Columbia, and in 1877 was elected an honorary fellow of the Royal Historical Society of Great Britain.

Several of de Peyster's addresses were published in pamphlet form, for example The life and administration of Richard, earl of Bellomont, governor of the provinces of New York, Massachusetts and New Hampshire, from 1697 to 1701: an address delivered before the New York Historical Society, at the celebration of its seventy-fifth anniversary, Tuesday, November 18th, 1879.

His wife was Mary Justina Watts, who died in 1821. His son John Watts de Peyster was a New York City author and philanthropist. Another son, Frederic De Peyster, Jr., served as an officer in the New York Militia during the American Civil War.

Frederic de Peyster is the namesake of De Peyster, New York.[1]


  1. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 104. 


Further reading[edit]

  • McKito, Valerie H. From Loyalists to Loyal Citizens: The DePeyster Family of New York. (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2015). xii, 248 pp