96th New York State Legislature
The 96th New York State Legislature, consisting of the New York State Senate and the New York State Assembly, met from January 7 to May 30, 1873, during the first year of John A. Dix's governorship, in Albany.
|96th New York State Legislature|
|Legislative body||New York State Legislature|
|Jurisdiction||New York, United States|
|Term||January 1 – December 31, 1873|
|President||Lt. Gov. John C. Robinson (R)|
|Temporary President||William B. Woodin (R)|
|Party control||Republican (21-4-4-2)|
|Speaker||Alonzo B. Cornell (R)|
|Party control||Republican (92-34-2)|
Under the provisions of the New York Constitution of 1846, 32 Senators and 128 assemblymen were elected in single-seat districts; senators for a two-year term, assemblymen for a one-year term. The senatorial districts were made up of entire counties, except New York County (five districts) and Kings County (two districts). The Assembly districts were made up of entire towns, or city wards, forming a contiguous area, all within the same county.
In his annual message to the 95th Legislature, Gov. John T. Hoffman suggested that a bi-partisan Constitutional Commission of 32 members should be formed. The commission had four members from each judicial district, appointed by the Governor, and confirmed by the State Senate, equally divided between Democrats and Republicans. The Constitutional Commission met on December 4, 1872.
At this time there were two major political parties: the Republican Party and the Democratic Party. A faction of the Republican Party assumed the name of Liberal Republican Party and nominated a fusion ticket with the Democrats, supporting Horace Greeley for president. The Democratic/Liberal Republican state ticket had Francis Kernan (D) for Governor and Chauncey M. Depew (LR) for Lieutenant Governor.
The 1872 New York state election was held on November 5. Republicans John A. Dix and John C. Robinson were elected Governor and Lieutenant Governor. The other three statewide elective offices up for election were also carried by the Republicans. The approximate party strength at this election, as expressed by the vote for Governor, was: Republicans 446,000 and Democrats/Liberal Republicans 392,000.
The Legislature met for the regular session at the Old State Capitol in Albany on January 7, 1873; and adjourned on May 30.
William B. Woodin (R) was elected president pro tempore of the State Senate.
The Constitutional Commission adjourned sine die on March 15, 1873. The proposed amendments to the Constitution were then debated by the Legislature, and those approved were submitted to the voters for ratification at the next state elections. At the New York state election, 1873, the voters were asked if the Judges of the Court of Appeals, and the County Judges throughout the State, should be appointed instead of being elected, which was answered in the negative.
- 1st District: Queens, Richmond and Suffolk counties
- 2nd District: 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 7th, 11th, 13th, 15th, 19th and 20th wards of the City of Brooklyn
- 3rd District: 6th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 12th, 14th, 16th, 17th and 18th wards of the City of Brooklyn; and all towns in Kings County
- 4th District: 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 13th and 14th wards of New York City
- 5th District: 8th, 9th, 15th and 16th wards of New York City
- 6th District: 10th, 11th and 17th wards of New York City
- 7th District: 18th, 20th and 21st wards of New York City
- 8th District: 12th, 19th and 22nd wards of New York City
- 9th District: Putnam, Rockland and Westchester counties
- 10th District: Orange and Sullivan counties
- 11th District: Columbia and Dutchess counties
- 12th District: Rensselaer and Washington counties
- 13th District: Albany County
- 14th District: Greene and Ulster counties
- 15th District: Fulton, Hamilton, Montgomery, Saratoga and Schenectady counties
- 16th District: Clinton, Essex and Warren counties
- 17th District: Franklin and St. Lawrence counties
- 18th District: Jefferson and Lewis counties
- 19th District: Oneida County
- 20th District: Herkimer and Otsego counties
- 21st District: Madison and Oswego counties
- 22nd District: Onondaga and Cortland counties
- 23rd District: Chenango, Delaware and Schoharie counties
- 24th District: Broome, Tompkins and Tioga counties
- 25th District: Cayuga and Wayne counties
- 26th District: Ontario, Seneca and Yates counties
- 27th District: Chemung, Schuyler and Steuben counties
- 28th District: Monroe County
- 29th District: Genesee, Niagara and Orleans counties
- 30th District: Allegany, Livingston and Wyoming counties
- 31st District: Erie County
- 32nd District: Cattaraugus and Chautauqua counties
The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued in office as members of this Legislature.
Note: Palmer, Harrower and Allen had been elected as Republicans in 1871, but had joined the Liberal Republicans in 1872, and were barred from the Republican caucus.
|1st||Townsend D. Cock*||Democrat|
|2nd||John C. Perry*||Republican|
|3rd||Henry C. Murphy*||Democrat|
|4th||(William M. Tweed)*||Democrat||did not take his seat; |
unsuccessfully contested by Jeremiah O'Donovan Rossa
|5th||Erastus C. Benedict*||Republican|
|7th||James O'Brien*||Reform Democrat|
|8th||Daniel F. Tiemann*||Reform Democrat|
|9th||William H. Robertson*||Republican|
|10th||Edward M. Madden*||Republican|
|11th||Abiah W. Palmer*||Liberal Rep.||voted for Conkling as U.S. Senator|
|12th||Isaac V. Baker Jr.*||Republican|
|13th||Charles H. Adams*||Republican|
|14th||William F. Scoresby*||Lib. Rep./Dem.|
|17th||Wells S. Dickinson*||Republican|
|19th||Samuel S. Lowery*||Republican|
|20th||Archibald C. McGowan*||Republican|
|22nd||Daniel P. Wood*||Republican|
|23rd||James H. Graham*||Republican|
|24th||Thomas I. Chatfield*||Republican|
|25th||William B. Woodin*||Republican||elected President pro tempore|
|27th||Gabriel T. Harrower*||Liberal Rep.||voted for Henry R. Selden as U.S. Senator|
|31st||Loran L. Lewis*||Republican|
|32nd||Norman M. Allen*||Liberal Rep.||voted for William M. Evarts as U.S. Senator|
- Clerk: Charles R. Dayton
- Assistant Doorkeeper: James Franklyn Jr.
- Stenographer: H. C. Tanner
The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued as members of this Legislature.
- Except New York City where the wards were apportioned into election districts, and then some whole wards and some election districts of other wards were gerrymandered together into Assembly districts.
- ALBANY.; Nomination of Roscoe Conkling as United States Senator in NYT on January 22, 1873
- Tweed did not claim the seat, and his chair remained empty throughout the whole term. A resolution to vacate the seat, and then call a special election to fill the seat, was proposed, but no action was taken. O'Donovan Rossa, who had lost the senatorial election to Tweed, claimed the seat, but was not admitted; see THE STATE LEGISLATURE; Tweeds Empty Chair in NYT on March 5, 1873; and ALBANY; AN ASPIRANT TO TWEED'S SEAT in NYT on April 15, 1873
- Abbott had been in the previous Assembly as a Republican. He joined the Liberal Republicans and was re-elected on the Democratic/Liberal Republican fusion ticket.
- The Assembly Contest in the Second District of Queens County in NYT on January 14, 1873
- Civil List and Constitutional History of the Colony and State of New York compiled by Edgar Albert Werner (1884; see pg. 276 for Senate districts; pg. 290 for senators; pg. 298–304 for Assembly districts; and pg. 373f for assemblymen)
- Life Sketches of Executive Officers and Members of the Legislature of the State of New York by William H. McElroy & Alexander McBride (1873)
- THE ASSEMBLY in NYT on November 7, 1872
- ALBANY; Organization of Both Houses of the Legislature in NYT on January 8, 1873