76th New York State Legislature

The 76th New York State Legislature, consisting of the New York State Senate and the New York State Assembly, met in Albany from January 4 to July 21, 1853, during the first year of Horatio Seymour's governorship.

76th New York State Legislature
75th 77th
Old State Capitol at Albany NY.jpg
The Old State Capitol (1879)
Legislative bodyNew York State Legislature
JurisdictionNew York, United States
TermJanuary 1 – December 31, 1853
PresidentLt. Gov. Sanford E. Church (D)
Temporary PresidentWilliam McMurray (D), from January 19;
Edwin D. Morgan (W), from July 21
Party controlsplit (16-16)
SpeakerWilliam H. Ludlow (D)
Party controlDemocratic (87-41)
1stJanuary 4 – April 13, 1853
2ndApril 14 – 15, 1853
3rdMay 24 – July 21, 1853


Under the provisions of the New York Constitution of 1846, 32 Senators were elected in single-seat senatorial districts for a two-year term, with the whole Senate being renewed biennially. The senatorial districts (except those in New York City) were made up of entire counties. One hundred and twenty-eight Assemblymen were elected in single-seat districts to a one-year term, with the whole Assembly being renewed annually. The Assembly districts were made up of entire towns, or city wards, forming a contiguous area, all in the same county. The City and County of New York was divided into four senatorial districts, and 16 Assembly districts.

At this time there were two major political parties: the Democratic Party and the Whig Party.[citation needed]


The New York state election of 1852 was held on November 2. Horatio Seymour (D) was elected governor, defeating the incumbent Washington Hunt (W). Lt. Gov. Sanford E. Church (D) was re-elected. The other two statewide elective offices up for election were also carried by the Democrats.[citation needed]


The Legislature met for the regular session at the Old State Capitol in Albany on January 4, 1853, and adjourned on April 13.

William H. Ludlow (D) was elected Speaker with 85 votes against 39 for Jeremiah Ellsworth (W). John S. Nafew (D) was elected Clerk of the Assembly with 86 votes against 40 for the incumbent Richard U. Sherman (W).

On January 19, William McMurray (D) was elected President pro tempore of the Senate.

On April 13, Governor Horatio Seymour called a special session of the Legislature, to conclude the unfinished business of the regular session.

On April 14, the Legislature met for a special session; and adjourned on April 15.

On May 24, the Legislature met for another special session; and adjourned on July 21.

On July 1, Russell Smith (D) was elected Speaker pro tempore, to preside over the Assembly during the absence of Speaker Ludlow.

On July 8, the Assembly impeached Canal Commissioner John C. Mather.

On July 21, near the end of the session, Edwin D. Morgan (W) was elected president pro tempore of the Senate.

On July 27, the New York Court for the Trial of Impeachments (consisting of the State Senate and the New York Court of Appeals), met at Albany, for the first time in State history. Assemblymen Marshall B. Champlain, Arphaxed Loomis, John McBurney, Solomon B. Noble (all four Democrats), Orlando Hastings, Walter L. Sessions and Daniel P. Wood (all three Whigs) appeared as the Managers to prosecute the impeachment. Congressman Rufus W. Peckham (D) appeared for the Defense. After organizing, the Court adjourned.[1]

On August 16, the Impeachment Court met for the trial, which lasted until Mather was acquitted on September 16.

State SenateEdit


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.


Parties by district.

The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued in office as members of this Legislature.

District Senator Party Notes
1st James E. Cooley* Democrat
2nd John Vanderbilt* Democrat
3rd William McMurray* Democrat on January 19, elected president pro tempore
4th Obadiah Newcomb* Whig
5th James W. Beekman* Whig
6th Edwin D. Morgan* Whig on July 21, elected president pro tempore
7th Abraham B. Conger* Democrat
8th John H. Otis* Democrat
9th Nathaniel Jones* Democrat
10th George T. Pierce* Democrat
11th Azor Taber* Whig
12th William H. Van Schoonhoven* Whig
13th Dan S. Wright* Whig
14th Eli W. Rogers* Democrat
15th Henry B. Smith* Democrat
16th Simeon Snow* Democrat
17th Henry E. Bartlett* Democrat
18th Harmon Bennett* Democrat
19th Benjamin N. Huntington* Whig
20th James Platt* Whig
21st Ashley Davenport* Democrat
22nd James Munroe* Whig
23rd Nathan Bristol* Democrat
24th William Beach* Whig
25th Josiah B. Williams* Whig
26th Francis R. E. Cornell* Democrat
27th Micajah W. Kirby* Democrat
28th Alonzo S. Upham* Whig
29th Myron H. Clark* Whig
30th John A. McElwain* Whig also Treasurer of Wyoming Co.
31st George R. Babcock* Whig
32nd Elisha Ward* Whig


  • Clerk: Ira P. Barnes
  • Sergeant-at-Arms: Charles Lee
  • Doorkeeper: A. N. Beardsley
  • Assistant Doorkeeper: George Read

State AssemblyEdit


The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued as members of this Legislature.

Party affiliations follow the vote on Speaker.

District Assemblymen Party Notes
Albany 1st William P. Malburn Democrat
2nd John Reid Whig
3rd William W. Forsyth Democrat
4th Thomas Kearney Democrat
Allegany 1st Emulous Townsend Whig
2nd Marshall B. Champlain Democrat also a Manager at the impeachment trial
Broome Joseph E. Ely Democrat
Cattaraugus 1st Daniel Hickox Democrat
2nd Michael H. Barker Democrat
Cayuga 1st William Hayden* Whig
2nd Terance J. Kennedy Whig
3rd Mathias Hutchinson Whig
Chautauqua 1st Walter L. Sessions Whig also a Manager at the impeachment trial
2nd Jeremiah Ellsworth* Whig
Chemung Hiram W. Jackson Democrat
Chenango 1st William H. Amsbry Democrat
2nd Luther Osgood Jr. Democrat
Clinton George V. Hoyle Whig
Columbia 1st Henry A. Dubois Whig
2nd Alonzo Chamberlain Democrat
Cortland Ashbel Patterson Democrat
Delaware 1st Charles S. Rogers Democrat
2nd Daniel Stewart Whig
Dutchess 1st John S. Emans* Democrat
2nd James H. Weeks Democrat
3rd Augustus Martin* Democrat
Erie 1st Almon M. Clapp Whig
2nd William T. Bush Whig
3rd Israel N. Ely Whig
4th Nelson Welch Whig
Essex Jonathan Burnet Whig
Franklin Darius W. Lawrence* Democrat
Fulton and Hamilton William A. Smith Democrat
Genesee 1st Theodore C. Peters Whig
2nd Joseph Cook Whig
Greene 1st Darius Winans Democrat
2nd Elijah P. Bushnell Democrat
Herkimer 1st Arphaxed Loomis Democrat also a Manager at the impeachment trial
2nd John W. Beckwith Democrat
Jefferson 1st James Gifford Democrat
2nd DeWitt C. West Democrat
3rd Charles Smith Democrat
Kings 1st Nicholson P. O'Brien Democrat
2nd George A. Searing Democrat
3rd James H. Hutchins Democrat
Lewis Seymour Green Democrat
Livingston 1st Amos A. Hendee Whig
2nd Abram Lozier Whig
Madison 1st Dennis Hardin Whig
2nd Marsena Temple Democrat
Monroe 1st Lyman Payne Whig
2nd Orlando Hastings Whig also a Manager at the impeachment trial
3rd James O. Pettingill Whig
Montgomery 1st William McClary Democrat
2nd Abram N. Van Alstine Democrat
New York 1st Frederick W. C. Wedekind Democrat
2nd Henry H. Howard Democrat
3rd Joseph Rose Jr.* Democrat
4th Robert D. Livingston Democrat
5th George F. Alden Democrat
6th Bartholomew T. Gilmore Democrat
7th Jacob S. Miller Democrat
8th Moses D. Gale* Democrat
9th Erastus W. Glover Democrat
10th Henry Shaw Democrat
11th David O'Keefe Jr.* Democrat
12th Daniel B. Taylor Democrat
13th William Taylor* Whig
14th Solomon B. Noble Democrat also a Manager at the impeachment trial
15th Thomas P. St. John* Democrat
16th Russell Smith Democrat on July 1, elected Speaker pro tempore
Niagara 1st George W. Holley Whig
2nd Reuben F. Wilson Democrat
Oneida 1st Dexter Gilmore Democrat
2nd Amos O. Osborn Whig
3rd Julius C. Thorne Democrat
4th Amos C. Hall Democrat
Onondaga 1st Alonzo Case Democrat
2nd Samuel S. Kneeland Whig
3rd Daniel P. Wood Whig also a Manager at the impeachment trial
4th Isaac V. V. Hibbard Democrat
Ontario 1st Marcus Persons Whig
2nd Hiram Ashley Whig
Orange 1st Thomas Fulton Democrat
2nd Hudson Webb Democrat
3rd Ethan B. Carpenter Democrat
Orleans Silas M. Burroughs Independent
Oswego 1st DeWitt C. Littlejohn Whig
2nd Charles A. Perkins Whig
Otsego 1st Charles McLean Democrat
2nd Jenks S. Sprague Democrat
3rd John C. Spafard Democrat
Putnam Nathan A. Howes* Democrat
Queens Sylvanus S. Smith* Democrat
Rensselaer 1st Jason C. Osgood Democrat
2nd Charles B. Stratton Whig
3rd Peter G. Ten Eyck Democrat
Richmond Henry Dehart Democrat
Rockland Nicholas C. Blauvelt Democrat
St. Lawrence 1st Barnabas Hall Democrat
2nd Benjamin Smith* Democrat
3rd Parker W. Rose* Democrat
Saratoga 1st Willam Cary Whig
2nd Henry Holmes Whig
Schenectady William Van Vranken Democrat
Schoharie 1st Luman Reed Whig
2nd John Westover Democrat
Seneca Sterling G. Hadley Democrat
Steuben 1st Dryden Henderson Democrat
2nd John McBurney Democrat also a Manager at the impeachment trial
3rd Henry H. Bouton Democrat
Suffolk 1st Abraham H. Gardiner Democrat
2nd William H. Ludlow Democrat elected Speaker
Sullivan James K. Gardner Democrat
Tioga Thomas I. Chatfield Whig
Tompkins 1st David Crocker Jr. Democrat
2nd Ebenezer S. Marsh Democrat
Ulster 1st John Lounsbury Democrat
2nd L. Harrison Smith Democrat
Warren Richard P. Smith Democrat
Washington 1st Charles R. Ingalls Democrat
2nd Samuel S. Beman Whig
Wayne 1st Benjamin H. Streeter Democrat
2nd Loammi Whitcomb Whig
Westchester 1st George C. Finch Democrat
2nd Jacob Odell Democrat
Wyoming Alonzo B. Rose Whig
Yates DeWitt C. Stanford Whig


  • Clerk: John S. Nafew
  • Sergeant-at-Arms: John P. Phelps
  • Doorkeeper: George D. Wooldridge
  • First Assistant Doorkeeper: Hugh Clary
  • Second Assistant Doorkeeper: S. A. Brown