Prosper Wetmore

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Prosper M. Wetmore
Prosper H. Wetmore.png
Prosper Wetmore in Mathew Brady's studio, 1857
BornFebruary 14, 1798
DiedMarch 16, 1876

Prosper Montgomery Wetmore (February 14, 1798 - March 16, 1876) was an author, legislator, and general in the New York State militia.[1] [2] He was instrumental in organizing the 7th regiment of National Guards in 1825 though he was forced to resign in 1827 due to some bad business dealings which "had resulted disastrously to his interest, and very prejudicially to his character."[3][4] He was subsequently appointed its paymaster general, a job he held until 1841.[5] He served in the State of New York legislature as one of the Regents of the University of the State of New York in 1834 and 1835.[5]

He was one of the founders of the American Art Union and served as its president for three years.[5] Wetmore was Secretary of the New York Chamber of Commerce in 1843 and was credited with the discovery of the Chamber's portraits of Alexander Hamilton and Cadwallader Colden which were thought to have been lost in New York's Great Fire in 1835.[6] He also served as director for the New York Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb.[5][7]

In 1861 he became one of the founding members of the Union Defense Committee of New York City, serving as appointed secretary to the Executive Committee during the American Civil War.[3][8] He also served as the Connecticut representative to the New England Soldiers' Relief Association.[9]

Wetmore wrote for print frequently. He authored a book of poetry, Lexington, with other fugitive poems, about the battle of Lexington, and edited and wrote the prologue to the Deaf poet James Nack's book Earl Rupert, and other tales and poems.[10][11]

Personal life[edit]

Wetmore was born in 1798, in what is now Bridgeport, Connecticut, the son of Robert William Wetmore and Amelia (Hubbard) Wetmore.[5] He was married to Lucy Ann (Ogsbury) Whetmore and they had twelve children.[2]


  1. ^ "Prosper M. Wetmore". Cleveland Museum of Art. 2018-10-30. Retrieved 2019-02-09.
  2. ^ a b "Prosper M. Wetmore", United States Census, 1870; North Hempstead , Queens, New York; roll 1081, page 108, line 1, National Archives film number M593. Retrieved on February 9, 2019.
  3. ^ a b Clark, Emmons (1890). History of the Seventh Regiment of New York, 1806-1889. New York: The Seventh Regiment. p. 150. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  4. ^ "An Ex-Orderly Sergeant" (1868). Recollections of the early days of the National guard, comprising the prominent events in the history of the famous Seventh regiment New York militia. New York: J. M. Bradstreet & Sons. pp. 62–70. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  5. ^ a b c d e James Carnahan Wetmore (1861). The Wetmore Family of America, and Its Collateral Branches: With Genealogical, Biographical, and Historical Notices. Albany : Munsell & Rowland. p. 18. ISBN 978-1-375-51792-8.
  6. ^ Joseph Bucklin Bishop (1918). A Chronicle of One Hundred & Fifty Years: The Chamber of Commerce of the State of New York, 1768-1918. Scribner. pp. 15–16. ISBN 978-1-358-02476-4.
  7. ^ "Annual Report of the New York Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf & Dumb". Internet Archive. 2016-10-23. Retrieved 2019-02-10. OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS... PROSPER M. WETMORE, First Vice-President.
  8. ^ Reports, resolutions and documents, of the Union defense committee of the citizens of New York. New York: Baptist & Taylor. 1862. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  9. ^ Minutes of the organization and proceedings of the New England soldiers' relief association. Root & Anthony & Co. 1862. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  10. ^ "Earl Rupert, and other tales and poems : Nack, James, 1809-1879". Internet Archive. 2016-10-23. Retrieved 2019-02-09.
  11. ^ "Lexington, with other fugitive poems : Wetmore, Prosper Montgomery, 1798-1876". Internet Archive. 2016-10-23. Retrieved 2019-02-09.