The Livingstons of Livingston Manor

By Edwin Brockholst Livingston
Introduction by Edward Renehan

Subjects: New York/regional, American History, Biography
Series: Excelsior Editions, New York Classics
Imprint: Excelsior Editions
Hardcover : 9781438494036, 588 pages, August 2023
Paperback : 9781438494029, 588 pages, August 2023

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Table of contents

New Introduction
Edward Renehan
A Short Sketch of The Scottish House of Callendar

1. Concerning the Reverend Alexander Livingston, Rector of Monyabroch in the Reign of Mary Queen of Scots, and his Descent from the Ancient House of Callendar

2. Concerning the Reverend William Livingston, Minister of Lanark, and his Son the Reverend John Livingston, and their Opposition to the Introduction of Episcopacy into Scotland

3. Concerning the Reverend John Livingston, Minister of Ancrum, and his Further Conflict with the Bishops and Government of Scotland, Leading to his Banishment to Holland for the Cause of Christ

4. Concerning Robert Livingston, the Elder, and his Settlement in the English Province of New York

5. Concerning Robert Livingston, the Nephew, and his Settlement in the Same Province

6. Concerning the Compact made by Robert Livingston, the Elder, with certain Whig Noblemen at the Court of William the Third, for the Suppression of Piracy in the North Atlantic, the Failure of his Scheme, and the Consequences thereof

7. Concerning the Founding by Robert Livingston, the Elder, of the Lordship and Manor of Livingston

8. Concerning the Further Adventures and Death of Robert Livingston, the Elder, First Lord of the Manor of Livingston

9. Concerning the Family of Robert, First Lord of the Manor of Livingston, and his Immediate Successors

10. Concerning the Early History of the Livingstons of Clermont

11. Concerning the Political History of an American Pocket Borough, and of the Livingston Party in the New York House of Assembly Prior to the War of Independence

12. Concerning the Declaration of Independence, and the Reasons why only One of the Three Livingston Members of the Second Continental Congress Signed the Same

13. Concerning the War of Independence, and the Part the Livingston Family Played therein

14. Concerning the Political History of the Livingston Family from the Evacuation of New York by the British, until the Election of Thomas Jefferson as Third President of the United States of America

15. Concerning the Mission of Robert R. Livingston of Clermont to France, and his Negotiations with Napoleon Resulting in the Louisiana Purchase

16. Concerning the First Steamboat, the “Clermont,” and how Robert R. Livingston “Gave Immortality to Fulton”

17. Concerning Edward Livingston of Clermont, Jurist and Secretary of State

18. Concerning Some Livingston Mansions and Their Historical Associations

19. Concerning the Heraldry of Livingston

A—A List of Livingstons who Held Commissions in the American Army and Navy during the War of Independence A.D. 1775–1783
B—Family of the Rev. John Livingston of Ancrum
C—Family of Robert Livingston, First Lord of the Manor of Livingston
D—Family of Philip Livingston, Second Lord of the Manor
E—Family of Robert Livingston, Third Lord of the Manor
F—Family of Gilbert Livingston, Fourth Son of Robert Livingston, First Lord of the Manor
G—Family of Peter Van Brugh Livingston
H—Family of Philip Livingston, “The Signer”
I—Family of William Livingston, Governor of New Jersey
J—Family of Judge Robert R. Livingston of Clermont
K—Family of Colonel Peter R. Livingston
L—Family of Philip Philip Livingston of Jamaica, W.I.
M—Family of Robert Livingston, “The Nephew”
List of Authorities

The complete history of one of New York State's—and the nation's—founding families.


The Livingstons of Livingston Manor provides a rich history of one of the most important families in the early history of New York State as well as the fledgling nation. Livingston Manor—granted to Robert Livingston the Elder (1654–1728) via royal charter from King George I of Britain in 1716—embraced 160,000 acres, including nearly all of what is today Columbia County as well as much of Sullivan and Delaware Counties. The primary family estate in Germantown, NY, where the leaders of the clan lived for more than two hundred years starting in 1728, Clermont on the Hudson River, is now a New York State Historic Site. Succeeding generations included "Chancellor" Robert R. Livingston (1746–1813) who served on the famed "Committee of Five" charged with drafting the Declaration of Independence. Other members of the clan also played major roles in New York State as well as nationally. Philip Livingston (1716–1778, known in the family as "Philip the Signer") was a delegate to the Continental Congress from New York and signed the Declaration of Independence; William Livingston (1723–1798) was a Delegate to the Constitutional Convention and a signatory to the US Constitution. Descendants of the Livingstons include the Bush clan, Eleanor Roosevelt (through her mother), and former New Jersey Governor Thomas H. Kean. First privately published in 1910, this long-unavailable history illuminates several generations of the Livingston clan and their impact on the fledgling and growing United States.

Edwin Brockholst Livingston (1852–1929) was a shipping insurance broker living in London. An amateur historian, he wrote three histories of the Livingston family. Edward Renehan is the author of many books, including John Burroughs: An American Naturalist and Dark Genius of Wall Street: The Misunderstood Life of Jay Gould, King of the Robber Barons. He lives near Newport, Rhode Island.


"…a well-researched book that brings the history of the Livingston family to life … Livingston does an excellent job tracing his family's genealogy and has put together an impressive book." — H-Net Reviews (H-Nationalism)