The 95th New York State Legislature, consisting of the New York State Senate and the New York State Assembly, met from January 2 to May 14, 1872, during the fourth year of John T. Hoffman's governorship, in Albany.
Under the provisions of the New York Constitution of 1846, 32 Senators and 128 assemblymen were elected in single-seat districts; senators for a two-year term, assemblymen for a one-year term. The senatorial districts were made up of entire counties, except New York County (five districts) and Kings County (two districts). The Assembly districts were made up of entire towns, or city wards, forming a contiguous area, all within the same county.
At this time there were two major political parties: the Republican Party and the Democratic Party.
The New York state election, 1871 was held on November 7. All seven statewide elective offices up for election were carried by the Republicans. The approximate party strength at this election, as expressed by the vote for Secretary of State, was: Republicans 387,000 and Democrats 368,000.
The Legislature met for the regular session at the Old State Capitol in Albany on January 2, 1872; and adjourned on May 14.
Henry Smith (R) was elected Speaker with 95 votes against 26 for John C. Jacobs (D).
In his annual message to the Legislature, Gov. John T. Hoffman suggested that a bi-partisan Constitutional Commission of 32 members should be formed. The Commission had four members from each judicial district, appointed by the Governor, and confirmed by the State Senate, equally divided between Democrats and Republicans.
William B. Woodin (R) was elected President pro tempore of the State Senate.
On May 1, Supreme Court Justice Albert Cardozo tendered his resignation, just before the report of the Judiciary Committee of the Assembly, which proposed his impeachment, was read. No further action was taken against Cardozo.
On May 2, the Assembly impeached Supreme Court Justice George G. Barnard.
On May 23, the Senate set the opening of the trial of Judge John McCunn, of the New York City Marine Court, for June 18.
On June 18, the Senate met for the trials of Judge McCunn, and Chenango County Judge Horace G. Prindle.
On July 2, the Senate removed Judge McCunn from office.
On July 17, the New York Court for the Trial of Impeachments met at Saratoga, to open the trial of Justice Barnard.
On August 19, Barnard was convicted by the Impeachment Court, was removed from office, and barred from ever holding public office again.
On December 4, the Constitutional Commission met.
The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued in office as members of this Legislature. Isaac V. Baker Jr., Webster Wagner and James H. Graham changed from the Assembly to the Senate.Clerk: James Terwilliger, resigned February 14
Charles R. Dayton, from February 17
Sergeant-at-Arms: Edwin J. Loomis
Doorkeeper: Daniel K. Schram
Assistant Doorkeeper: J. D. Lonergan
Journal Clerk: Charles R. Dayton, until February 17
The asterisk (*) denotes members of the previous Legislature who continued as members of this Legislature.
Party affiliations follow the vote for Speaker.Clerk: Cornelius S. Underwood, died on April 27, 1872
Edward M. Johnson, from May 1, 1872
Sergeant-at-Arms: Philip J. Rhinehardt
Doorkeeper: Eugene L. Demers
First Assistant Doorkeeper: James H. Lee
Second Assistant Doorkeeper: James Hogan