William Stephens Smith, Sr. (1755 - 1816)

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Birthplace: Queens, Queens, NY, USA
Death: Died in Lebanon, Chenango, NY, United States
Cause of death: unspecified causes
Managed by: R. Lee Stevens
Last Updated:

About William Stephens Smith, Sr.

DAR Information:

http://services.dar.org/public/dar_research/search_adb/default.cfm

SMITH, WILLIAM Ancestor #: A106172 Service: NEW YORK Rank(s): LIEUTENANT COLONEL, AIDE-DE-CAMP Birth: 11-8-1755 NEW YORK NEW YORK Death: 6-10-1816 WESTCHESTER -PROB NEW YORK Service Description: 1) MAJ;ADC GEN.SULLIVAN;LCOL,ADJ,INSPECTOR 2) LAFAYETTE;ADC GEN.WASHINGTON


Residence


Created: 2002-03-27 23:23:55.3, Updated: , By: Conversion 1) City: CHERRY VALLEY - State: NEW YORK


Spouse Number Name


Created: 2002-03-27 23:17:13.16, Updated: 2002-03-27 23:17:13.16, By: Conversion 1) ABIGAIL ADAMS

William Stephens Smith (November 8, 1755 - June 10, 1816) was a United States Representative from New York and a son-in-law of President John Adams, a brother-in-law of President John Quincy Adams and an uncle of Charles Francis Adams.

Born on Long Island, he graduated from the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) in 1774, studied law for a short time, and served in the Revolutionary Army as aide-de-camp to General John Sullivan in 1776. He was on the staff of General Lafayette in 1780 and 1781, and then transferred to the staff of General Washington. He was secretary of the Legation at London in 1784 and returned to America in 1788; he was appointed by President Washington to be United States Marshal for the district of New York in 1789, and later supervisor of revenue.

He was one of the originators of the Society of the Cincinnati, and served as its president from 1795 to 1797. He was appointed by President John Adams surveyor of the port of New York in 1800 and in 1807 moved to Lebanon, New York.

Smith was elected as a Federalist to the Thirteenth Congress, holding office from March 4, 1813 to March 3, 1815. He presented credentials of his election to the Fourteenth Congress, but he did not qualify, and on December 13, 1815, Westel Willoughby, Jr. successfully contested his election. Smith died in Smith Valley in the town of Lebanon in 1816; interment was in the Lines Hill Cemetery, between Smyrna and Sherburne.

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Stephens_Smith

William Stephens Smith (November 8, 1755 – June 10, 1816) was a United States Representative from New York. He married Abigail "Nabby" Adams, the daughter of President John Adams, and so was a brother-in-law of President John Quincy Adams, and an uncle of Charles Francis Adams.


Born on Long Island, he graduated from the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) in 1774, and studied law for a short time.


American Revolutionary War


He served in the Revolutionary Army as aide-de-camp to general John Sullivan in 1776. Smith fought in the Battle of Long Island, was wounded at Harlem Heights, fought at the Battle of White Plains, was promoted to lieutenant colonel at the Battle of Trenton and fought at the Battle of Monmouth and Newport. He was on the staff of General Lafayette in 1780 and 1781, became an adjutant in the Corps of Light Infantry then transferred to the staff of George Washington.


Years after the war


He was secretary of the Legation at London in 1784. While there, he met and courted John Adams's daughter Abigail ("Nabby"), whom he married in 1786.[2] He returned to America in 1788.


Smith was appointed by President Washington to be the first United States Marshal for the District of New York in 1789, and later supervisor of revenue. He was one of the originators of the Society of the Cincinnati, and served as its president from 1795 to 1797. He was appointed by President John Adams surveyor of the port of New York in 1800. During this period the Smiths bought land in what was then the countryside outside of New York City, and planned to build an estate, which they called Mount Vernon, in honor of George Washington. They never lived there, but a carriage house on the property was later converted to a hotel and is now operated as the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum.


Colonel Smith raised private funds, procured weapons, and recruited soldiers of fortune to fight the Spanish territory of Venezuela. This action was inspired by Smith's renewal of acquaintance with Francisco de Miranda, whom Smith had first met when he was John Adams's secretary in London in 1783. On 2 February 1806, a force of filibusters, including Smith's son William Steuben, set sail on a chartered merchant vessel, the Leander. The Spanish captured the ship and the mercenaries. Steuben later escaped.


Colonel Smith was indicted in New York for violating the Neutrality Act of 1794 and put on trial. Colonel Smith claimed his orders came from U.S. President Thomas Jefferson and U.S. Secretary of State James Madison, who refused to appear in court. Judge William Paterson ruled that the President "cannot authorize a person to do what the law forbids." Colonel Smith stood trial and was found not guilty.


In 1807 Smith moved to Lebanon, New York.


Smith was elected as a Federalist to the 13th United States Congress, holding office from March 4, 1813 to March 3, 1815. After the United States House of Representatives elections in New York, 1814, credentials of his election to the 14th United States Congress were issued by the Secretary of State of New York, but Stephens did not take or claim the seat. Part of the votes had been erroneously returned for "Westel Willoughby" (omitting the "Jr."), thus giving Stephens apparently a majority. On December 13, 1815, Westel Willoughby, Jr. was declared by a vote of the House entitled to the seat.


Smith died in Smith Valley in the town of Lebanon in 1816. He is interred in the West Hill Cemetery in the Town of Sherburne, on New York State Route 80.

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Col. William Stephens Smith, Sr.'s Timeline

1755
November 8, 1755
Queens, Queens, NY, USA
1786
June 12, 1786
Age 30
London, England
1787
1787
Age 31
London, United Kingdom
1788
November 10, 1788
Age 33
New York, Queens, New York, United States
1790
September 1790
Age 34
New York, New York, United States
1795
January 27, 1795
Age 39
New York, NY, USA
1816
June 10, 1816
Age 60
Lebanon, Chenango, NY, United States
????
????
Sherburne, Chenango, New York, United States