More Details Original Title. DeWitt Clinton. Other Editions 5. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
To ask other readers questions about The Birth of Empire , please sign up. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Jul 19, Bruce rated it liked it. The Clinton family certainly figures prominently in the history of New York State and the nation. George Clinton was the state's first governor when we declared independence. And he died in holding that office. Unlike Uncle George who was an anti-Federalist down to the marrow of his bones, nephew DeWitt could and did make many a deal with Federalist folks to obtain office and further his ambition.
He while a nominal Democrat The Clinton family certainly figures prominently in the history of New York State and the nation. He while a nominal Democrat-Republican was the Federalist candidate for president in Clinton held a host of posts up to that point. He had been in the state legislature a few times, he was a US Senator twice for short terms during Thomas Jefferson's time in office. And he was Mayor of New York City twice.
When he ran for president in Uncle George had passed away the first Vice President to die in office.
I'm sure that removed the last barrier to being a coalition candidate with the Federalists in that year. He was also the Mayor of New York City when he ran for president. To this day he is the only Mayor Of NYC to be nominated by a major party for president and ironically it wasn't his own party.
In we went to war with Great Britain and the war was most unpopular in the New England area and a bit in the mid Atlantic states. Clinton carried the Northeast except Vermont and Madison carried the rest of the country. Electoral and popular vote wise it was not a landslide for James Madison. Clinton's biggest success is the building of the Erie Canal. He was a member of the Erie Canal Commission established in which oversaw the building of the canal. He was its prime mover and was there while holding other offices.
You could make an argument it was the first public authority in government. It protected Clinton also when his political fortunes were on the wane at certain points. As it happened Clinton was governor when the Erie Canal was completed. Even Clinton's enemies always credited him with being the one with the vision about the Erie Canal and its benefits.
Clinton as described by many could be haughty and arrogant. But the same folks also said he was brilliant. Clinton believed in making whatever alliances he had to.
Other newer folks like Martin Van Buren believed in rigid party organization and discipline. Van Buren couldn't stand him personally, but worked with Clinton when the situation called for it. Clinton when he died in was supporting Andrew Jackson for president. It was a sudden departure and Van Buren picked up the pieces as Clinton supporters only had a personal attachment to him. Evan Cornog's book is good but I'm sure a better one might come along that will explain what made DeWitt Clinton tick.
Clinton, De Witt
Dec 07, Lee rated it liked it Shelves: biography-autobiography , history , us-history. Representative George Clinton Jr. Representative James G. Clinton , and the cousin of Simeon De Witt. He became the secretary to his uncle George Clinton , who was then governor of New York. He was a member of the Council of Appointments in — and — Senate seat left vacant by the resignation of John Armstrong, Jr.
He served as Mayor of New York from to , to , and to While serving as mayor, he organized the New-York Historical Society in and was its president.
The Birth of Empire: DeWitt Clinton and the American Experience, 1769-1828
He also helped re-organize the American Academy of the Fine Arts in , and served as its president between and Clinton was also elected a member of the American Antiquarian Society in ,  and served as its vice president from to Clinton's uncle, George Clinton , had attempted to challenge James Madison for the presidency in , but was chosen as the party's vice presidential nominee instead.
Clinton ran for President of the United States as candidate for both the Federalist Party and a small group of anti-war Democratic-Republicans. In the close election of , Clinton was defeated by President Madison; Clinton received 89 electoral votes to James Madison's It was the strongest showing of any Federalist candidate for the Presidency since , and the change of the votes of one or two states would have given Clinton the victory. After the resignation of Governor Tompkins, who had been elected Vice President, he won a special gubernatorial election in which he was the only candidate.
He was re-elected in , defeating the sitting Vice President Tompkins in a narrow race, DeWitt Clinton 47, votes, Tompkins 45,, and served until December 31, The gubernatorial election was also moved from April to November, but Clinton was not renominated by his party to run for re-election in November Even so, he still kept his post as President of the Erie Canal Commission.
This caused such a wave of indignation among the electorate, that he was nominated for Governor by the "People's Party", and was re-elected governor against the official candidate of the Democratic-Republican Party , fellow canal commissioner Samuel Young. He served another two terms until his sudden death in office. Clinton was a York Rite Freemason. Clinton was essential in establishing the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar in the United States, serving as its first, second, and third Grand Master from to The Grand Lodge of New York has established the DeWitt Clinton Award which recognizes distinguished or outstanding community service by non-Masonic organizations or individuals whose actions exemplify a shared concern for the well-being of Mankind and a belief in the worldwide brotherhood of Man.
From to , Clinton was a member of the Erie Canal Commission. He was among the first members, appointed in , who projected and surveyed the route to be taken. As governor, Clinton was largely responsible for the construction of the Erie Canal. He was persuaded by Canal proponent Jesse Hawley to support construction of a canal from the eastern shore of Lake Erie to the upper Hudson River. Many thought the project was impracticable, and opponents mocked it as "DeWitt's Ditch".
When the canal was finished in , Governor Clinton opened it, sailing in the packet boat Seneca Chief along the canal into Buffalo.
New-York Historical Society | DeWitt Clinton ()
The canal was an immense success, carrying huge amounts of passenger and freight traffic. The completion of the canal brought about a significant shift in public opinion on Clinton, who was now hailed for completing the canal. The change in public opinion was reflected in the newspapers of the time. Previously being filled with harsh criticisms of Clinton and the canal, they now celebrated his accomplishment. Clinton to advance the best interest of the State over which he presides are very generally acknowledged both by his constituents and the public abroad.
His exertions in favor of the great canal have identified his name with that noble enterprise, and he will be remembered while its benefits are experienced," and ended with "Yield credit to Clinton, and hail him by name". Clinton was married twice. With her he had ten children, and four sons and three daughters were surviving at the time of her death in In , Clinton became a hereditary member of the New York Society of the Cincinnati in succession to his brother, Lieutenant Alexander Clinton, who was an original member of the society.
When DeWitt Clinton died suddenly in Albany on February 11, , he left his family in poor financial condition. While Clinton was a fine administrator in government, he had handled his own financial affairs rather poorly. As a result, the Clinton family was badly in arrears and had no means of support after the governor's death. Fearing that he might not get his money, the creditor obtained a judgment that resulted in a public sale of most of the Clinton family possessions. Enough money was realized from the sale of the property to satisfy the judgment, but nothing was left to help the Clinton family through the difficult years ahead.
Although the governor received the grandest of state funerals, when it was all over, the family had no place to bury him. Not you? Forgotten password? Forgotten password Use the form below to recover your username and password. New details will be emailed to you. Simply reserve online and pay at the counter when you collect.
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- The Birth of Empire.
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