Arthur Breese

Catharine Livingston and Arthur Breese

Pioneers of Utica
The New York State Historical Association
Obituary 2
Sarah Breese Walker
Breese Family

Arthur Breese
(11 Sep 1770, Shrewsbury NJ)
(13 Aug 1825, Utica NY)
+ Catharine Livingston
(18 Aug 1775, Poughkeepsie NY)
(21 Aug 1808, Utica NY)

    Rear Admiral Samuel Livingston Breese[married Frances Hogan Stout and Emma Lovett]
    Sarah Breese[married Barent Bleecker Lansing]
    Elizabeth Breese[married William Malcolm Sands]
    Catherine Walker Breese[married Captain Samuel Birdsill Griswold]
    Illinois Chief Justice Sidney Breese[married Eliza Morrison]
    Susan Breese[married Jacob Stout, Jr.]
    Henry Livingston Breese[died aged 13]
    Arthur Breese, Jr.[died aged 33, unmarried]
    Mary Davenport Breese[married Henry Leonard Davis]

+ Ann Carpender
(10 November 1783, of Brooklyn NY)
(17 May 1857, Utica NY)

    Sarah Ann Breese[married Thomas Read Walker]
    Josiah Salisbury Breese[married Augusta Eloise Lawrence]
    William Gregg Breese[married Adeline Wiggins]
    Frances Helen Breese[died aged 28, unmarried]
    Robert Lenox Breese[died aged 15]
    Aquila Stout Breese[died as infant]

The Pioneers of Utica
One of the prominent men of Oneida county while the county was yet new was Arthur Breese. He was born in Shrewsbury, NJ September 16, 1770, and was the second son of Samuel and Elizabeth Breese. His paternal grandfather, a native of Shrewsbury, in England, and of Welsh parentage, had been an officier in the British navy, and a Jacobite, but resigned his commission after the Pretender's defeat, and came to America. An extremely social man in his lifetime and noted for giving good dinners, at which he always sang songs and told stories with much spirit, -- he lies buried in Trinity Church yard, NY, beneath an epitaph made by himself, and which reads as follows:

Ha! Sidney, Sidney,
Lyest thou here?
I here lye
Till time is flown
To its extremity.

Breese MonumentArthur Breese's mother was the grand-daughter of Rev. James Anderson, first minister of the Wall Street Presbyterian Church, New York. He was graduated at Princeton, studied law with Elias Boudinot, and was admitted an attorney of the Supreme Court in August 1792. As early as 1794 he removed to Whitesboro, where he became a partner in practice with Jonas Platt. He acted also as deputy clerk of the county, Mr. Platt being clerk, was a master in chancery, and in 1796-7 was a representative in the Legislature. Upon the organization of the new county of Oneida he was appointed surrogate, and held the office so long as he remained at Whitesboro. But when a clerkship of the Supreme Court was established at Utica, in 1808, he was made clerk and removed thither. The building he occupied stood where now stands the office of the county clerk, to which it has but recently given way. He soon built for his dwelling a large stone house directly opposite, and next above Jeremiah Van Rensselaer's, a site now filled by the Miller, or step-ladder row. On the death of its first president, Mr. Breese also held for a time the position of president of the Ontario Branch Bank. He was himself cut down in the very prime of life, having died August 14, 1825, at the age of fifty-three, in the city of New York, whither he had gone to seek for the restoration of his health.

By nature inactive in temperament and easy of disposition, Mr. Breese was yet possessed of strong sense and much personal worth, of sterling integrity, of large hospitality, and generous in his care for the religious, educational and other important interests of the town and neighborhood. He bore his part among the founders of the Oneida Bible Society and the Utica Academy, and as trustee of the village corporation, and of the Presbyterian Church, of which latter he was a communicant.

He was somewhat of an epicure, and fond of the delicacies of the table, his larder and ice-house being always well supplied, and he never so happy as when surrounded by his friends, to enjoy with him his good cheer. A capital judge of wines, his cellar was liberally stocked with choice kinds, of his own important. In manners he was quiet and rather taciturn, though cheerful and genial, with the looks and bearing of a thorough gentleman. His features were regular, his eyes large and expressive, and though, in later life, a little beyond embonpoint, he was in his younger days remarked for his personal beauty.

Mr. Breese was twice married, and the father of a large family of whom some have risen to distinction, and all were highly respectable and well connected. Catharine, his first wife, was the daughter of Harry Livingston, of Poughkeepsie. She died August 21, 1808, very soon after their removal to Utica, in her thirty-third year. She is represented to have been a faithful guide to her household in the path of duty, and an example of Christian meekness and piety. Endeared to all her acquaintances, she was universally lamented.

Her children were Samuel Livingston, rear admiral of the Navy of the United States, who entered the navy in 1810, and after sixty years of duty, including the war of 1812, the Mexican war, service at the Norfolk and Brooklyn navy yards, and as commander of the European Squadron, was placed on the retired list; he died December 17, 1870; Sarah (Mrs. B.B. Lansing, and afterwards Mrs. James Platt;) Elizabeth (wife of William Malcolm Sands, purser of the United States Navy;) Catharine Walker, (widow of Captain Samuel B. Griswold, of United States Army); Sidney, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and United States Senator from Illinois; Susan (Mrs. Jacob Stout, then Mrs. P.A. Proal, died 1863.) Henry Livingston, died at the age of 14; Arthur, died in Florida, 1838; Mary Davenport (Mrs. Henry Davis, of Waterford).

Mr. Breese married the second time in 1810, Miss Ann Carpender, of New York, of English descent. She survived her husband many years, and died May 17, 1857, in the seventy-third year of her age. A woman of marked vigor as well as vivacity of intellect, she managed her property with skill and prudence, so that, left a widow with no superabundance of means, she greatly increased her income, and reared a large family, with all the surroundings befitting the position that was always accorded her. Though her habits and tastes were eminently domestic, her society even to the last was desired by both old and young, for she shone among the most refined in social life, was admired for her playful wit, her dignity, culture and grace, and esteemed for her consistent discharge of Christian duty.

She had six children, as follows: Sarah Ann (Mrs. Thomas R. Walker); Josiah Salisbury, merchant of New York, died February 11, 1865; William Gregg, merchant of Cincinnati, afterwards and until his death, which occurred June 15, 1841, a resident of the city of New York; Frances Helen, died June 4, 1847; Robert Lenox, died July 15, 1835; Aquila Stout, died August 31, 1825.

Oneida County, NY Vol. 1
14 June 1825 - 6 June 1826

Died on Sunday morning the 14th inst. at New York, in the 53rd year of his age Arthur Breese Esq. of this place. At a very early period in the settlement of this section of the country, he established himself at Whitesboro in the profession of the law. On the creation of the Clerkship of the Supreme Court for the Western District, he received the appointment of Clerk, and remained the incumbent until his death. He was a man of much personal and private worth, of sterling integrity, and exemplary piety; and his loss is deeply felt by his friends and fellow citizens and by a numerous and interesting family.

The New York State Historical Association

ARTHUR BREESE (Princeton 1790.)
Arthur Breese was a native of New Jersey, studied law in the office of Elias Boudinot,President of the Continental Congress, was admitted to the bar in 1792 and located at Whitesboro in 1793. He was a brother-in-law [Error: nephew-in-law] of Jonas Platt and by virtue of this relation became Deputy County Clerk of Herkimer County. He was elected to the Assembly in 1796, became first Surrogate of Oneida County and held the office until 1808, when his Federalist principles made him obnoxious to the Council of Appointment, which put another in his place. Upon his removal to Utica he was made one of the clerks of the old Supreme Court and Court of Chancery. He held the latter office until his death. He does not seem to have been very active in the practice of the law, but he was a man of fine personal character, of cultivated and scholarly tastes, who left a family the members of which filled very useful and honorable positions in life. His son, Samuel, was a Rear Admiral in the Navy; another was the wife of Captain S.B. Griswold of the United States Army, and his son Sidney, after graduating at Union College, studied law with Gold and Sill and settled in Illinois, where he became United States District Attorney, Reporter of the Supreme Court of Illinois, Circuit Judge and later United States Senator, finally terminating his career as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Illinois.

Families of Olde Whitesborough 1784-1824 p. 33
Arthur Breese was born in Shrewsbury, New Jersey on Sept. 16, 1770. He was the second son of Samuel and Elizabeth (Anderson) Breese (his second wife).

His immigrant ancestor and paternal grandfather was Sidney Breese (1709-1767), a native of Shrewsbury, England and his wife Elizabeth Penkethman who came to New York about 1750.

His father, Col. Samuel Breese was an officer in the American Revolution, was the Col. of the 3rd Regiment Monmouth County Militia 1775/6 and his home was between two lines of two armies and he suffered great losses by the enemy in 1779.

Arthur Breese graduated from Princeton University and received his honorary Bachelor's Degree from Yale College in 1789, and following in the wake of the westward migration settled in Whitesboro in 1793. In 1808 he moved to Utica.

In 1801 Arthur Breese served jointly as the Inspector and also as Brigade Major of the 2nd Brigade of Cavalry of the New York State Militia.

He married Catherine Livingston whose sister was wife to Jonas Platt (q.v.) [Helen Livingston was aunt to Catherine]. Catherine was his first wife, she was the daughter of Henry Livingston and Susan Conklin of Poughkeepsie, NY [those were her grandparents]. Catherine died on Aug. 21, 1808 very soon after their removal to Utica, in her 33rd year. He married second, in 1810, Ann Carpenter of New York who died May 17, 1857, at the age of 73 years.

His home was on Main Street opposite the Village Green. After his arrival in Whitesboro in 1793 where he became a partner with Jonas Platt, he also served as Deputy Oneida County Clerk. Jonas Platt was the Oneida County Clerk at that time.

In 1796 he was elected to the New York State Assembly. In 1798 - 1808 he served as the first Surrogate Judge of Oneida County NY.

of the future Village of Whitesboro. He was one of the first Trustees of The United Presbyterian Societies of Whitestown and Old Fort Schuyler in 1804 and 1805.

Arthur had 15 children: Nine by his first wife and six by his second wife.

Oneida County, NY Vol. 1
14 June 1825 - 6 June 1826

Arthur Breese was a descendant of the pictureque soldier-merchant who was a master of the port of New York on the eve of the American Revolution (E.E. Salisbury, Family Memorials, 1885, II, pp. 477, 503)

Arthur Breese received an honorary bachelor's degree from Yale College in 1789, followed in the wake of the westward migration, settled at Whitetown in 1793, later removed to Utica, and for seventeen years was clerk of the supreme court of Western New York. He built a spacious home where he entertained Lafayette and other notables who visited that part of the country.

Personal Reminiscences of the Late Mrs. Sarah Breese Walker
Arthur, the second son of Samuel and Elizabeth Breese, and the father of Mrs. Thomas R. Walker, was born in Shrewsbury, N.J. September 16, 1770. He graduated from Yale College, became a lawyer by profession and for many years was associated with Judge Jonas Platt in Whitesboro. In 1808, he was appointed Clerk of the Supreme Court of th Western District of New York, a position in those days of great trust, responsibility and honor, and at once removed to Utica, N.Y. where he resided during the remainder of his life. He married 1793 Catharine, daughter of Major Henry Livingston, of Poughkeepsie, N.Y. who was descended in the seventh generation from Rev. John Livingston, of the Scotch Kirk, whose son Robert emigrated to America in 1676. A letter received by her daughter Catharine from her cousin Arthur Henry Snowden in 1884, seventy six years after her mother's death, speaks of Mrs. Breese as follows.

I recollect your Livingston mother well. She had light hair, blue eyes, beautiful rosy complexion, angelic form, graceful step and full of life. Your brother Sidney once said to me in N.Y., 'I used to think your mother, cousin Arthur, the handsomest woman I ever saw.' He must have forgotten his own!

She died Aug 15, 1808, in the 33rd year of her age, leaving nine children.

Arthur Breese married, secondly, October 14, 1809, Ann, youngest daughter of John and Sarah Carpender, of Brooklyn, N.Y. All the children of Arthur and Ann Carpender Breese were born in a fine old mansion on Genesse Street built by Mr. Breese, afterwards sold, and the stones used in rebuilding a row of houses now standing upon its site.

Family Memorials - A series of Genealogical and Biographical Monographs, on the families of ..., Breese, ...", Edward Elbridge Salisbury, 1885
Arthur, born Sept. 16, 1770; who was twice married; and died Aug. 14, 1825. His first wife was Catharine daughter of Henry Livingston of Poughkeepsie, N. T., (" who had served as a Major in the Revolutionary army" - but was commonly known as Judge Henry) whom he moarried Nov. 4, 1793. She was of the seventh generation in descent from Rev. John Livingston, "whose name ranks high in the Scotch Church, and who was one of the commissioners appointed by Parliament to negotiate with Charles the terms of his restoration to the throne, but who was afterward prosecuted with vigorous rancor for non-conformity, and obliged to take refuge in Rotterdam;21 whose son Robert (b. 1654) emigrated from Scotland to America in 1676, and in 1683 married Alida widow of Rev. Nicolaus Van Rensselaer, and daughter of Philip Pietersen Schuyler; whose son Gilbert married Cornelia Beekman; whose son Robert married Catharine MePheadres; whose son Henry married Susannah Conklin; whose son Henry ("Judge Henry") married Sarah daughter of Rev. Dr. Noah Welles of Stamford, Conn., "one of the most beautiful-women in Connecticut." Samuel Finley Breese Morse, the year before his marriage to Sarah Elizabeth Griswold (a grandchild of Arthur Breese), purchased an estate at Poughkeepsie on the Hudson, and named it Locust Grove, which he afterwards found had been the property of his wife's great grandfather Judge Livingston, and called by the same name: here, under a tree once pointed out to me, Catharine Livingston watched for the coming of Arthur Breese down the river, in the days of sloop-navigation. The widow of Sidney Edwards Morse is of the same Livingston blood, Robert and Catharine (McPheadres) Livingston having had, beside Henry and one other son, a son Gilbert Robert who married Martha Kane (cousin German of Chancellor Kent), and was the father of Rev. Dr. Gilbert Robert Livingston, the father of Mrs. Morse. The second Robert Livingston above named was first cousin to Chancellor Livingston's father.

Mrs. Catharine (Livingston) Breese died in 1808, in her thirty-third year, the mother, as we shall see, of nine children, of whom the eldest was only in his fourteenth year.

Arthur Breese married for his second wife, Oct. 14, 1809, Ann daughter of John Carpender.

At a very.early period in the settlement of the country [having received the honorary degree of Master of Arts from Yale College in 1789 he was established at Whitestown, Oneida Co., N.Y., in the profession of the law. On the creation of the clerkship of the Supreme Court for the Western District [in 1808], he received the appointment of Clerk, and remained the incumbent until his death. He was a man of much personal and private worth, sterling integrity and exemplary piety.


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