Harman Patil (Editor)

61st New York State Legislature

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Members  32
Members  128
Party control  Democratic (22-10)
61st New York State Legislature
Jurisdiction  New York, United States
Term  January 1 – December 31, 1838
President  Lt. Gov. John Tracy (D)

The 61st New York State Legislature, consisting of the New York State Senate and the New York State Assembly, met from January 2 to April 18, 1838, during the sixth year of William L. Marcy's governorship, in Albany.



Under the provisions of the New York Constitution of 1821, 32 Senators were elected on general tickets in eight senatorial districts for four-year terms. They were divided into four classes, and every year eight Senate seats came up for election. Assemblymen were elected countywide on general tickets to a one-year term, the whole Assembly being renewed annually.

At this time there were two political parties: the Democratic Party and the Whig Party.

In May 1837, the Panic of 1837 broke out, and led to a severe financial crisis. The incumbent Democratic State government was blamed for it by the voters, and the opposing Whig Party won the election in November in a landslide.


The State election was held from November 6 to 8, 1837. Gulian C. Verplanck (1st D.), Henry A. Livingston (2nd D.), Edward P. Livingston (3rd D.), Martin Lee (4th D.), Avery Skinner (5th D.), Laurens Hull (6th D.), John Maynard (7th D.) and William A. Moseley (8th D.) were elected to the Senate. Edward P. Livingston and Avery Skinner were Democrats, the other six were Whigs.


The Legislature met for the regular session at the Old State Capitol in Albany on January 2, 1838; and adjourned on April 18.

Luther Bradish (W) was elected Speaker.

On February 5, the Legislature elected Gamaliel H. Barstow (W) to succeed Abraham Keyser (D) as State Treasurer; and Orville L. Holley (W) to succeed William Campbell (D) as Surveyor General.

On September 12, the Whig state convention met at Utica, and nominated William H. Seward for Governor, and Speaker Luther Bradish for Lieutenant Governor. On the same day, the Democratic state convention met at Herkimer, and nominated Gov. Marcy and Lt. Gov. Tracy unanimously for re-election.

On October 3, a state convention of former Democrats (among them U.S. Senator Nathaniel P. Tallmadge, Congressman John C. Clark and Ex-Assemblyman Judah Hammond) met under the name of "Conservatives" at Syracuse, and endorsed the Whig nominees Seward and Bradish.


  • The First District (4 seats) consisted of Kings, New York and Richmond counties.
  • The Second District (4 seats) consisted of Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Queens, Rockland, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster and Westchester counties.
  • The Third District (4 seats) consisted of Albany, Columbia, Delaware, Greene, Rensselaer, Schenectady and Schoharie counties.
  • The Fourth District (4 seats) consisted of Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Hamilton, Herkimer, Montgomery, St. Lawrence, Saratoga, Warren and Washington counties.
  • The Fifth District (4 seats) consisted of Jefferson, Lewis, Madison, Oneida, Oswego and Otsego counties.
  • The Sixth District (4 seats) consisted of Allegany, Broome, Cattaraugus, Chemung, Chenango, Livingston, Steuben, Tioga and Tompkins counties.
  • The Seventh District (4 seats) consisted of Cayuga, Cortland, Onondaga, Ontario, Seneca, Wayne and Yates counties.
  • The Eighth District (4 seats) consisted of Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Monroe, Niagara and Orleans counties.
  • Members

    The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued in office as members of this Legislature.

    Senators who resided in counties which were transferred to a different district continued to represent the district in which they were elected.


  • Clerk: John F. Bacon
  • Assemblymen

    The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued as members of this Legislature.

    Party affiliations follow the vote on State officers on February 5.


  • Clerk: Jarvis N. Lake
  • Sergeant-at-Arms: Harley R. Luddington
  • Doorkeeper: William C. Bloss
  • Assistant Doorkeeper: Frederick Lamb
  • References

    61st New York State Legislature Wikipedia

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