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Minutes of the Common Council of the City of New York, 1784-1831 (Volume 10) online

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Munson Messrs. Kip Parker Board Allen 9

Negative. Aid" Mesier King Underbill Van Amringe Taylor
Thorp Messrs. Bolton Stevens Schieffelin 9.

The Board being equally divided his Honor the Mayor gave his
vote in the Negative so the motion was lost.

The question was then taken on the first Resolution and a Division
being called the members voted as follows :

[96] Affirmative. M r . Recorder, Aid" Mesier: King: Underbill :
Van Amringe : Morss : M c Queen : Buckmaster : Taylor : Thorp : Mun-
son. Messrs. Bolton: Stevens: Kip: Parker: Board: Schieffelin:

So it was carried unanimously in the Affirmative.

The Second Resolution was then read and Mr. Stevens moved
as an amendment to strike out after the words ' the land ' the rest of
the Resolution and to insert the words ' designated in the Commis-
sioners' Map as the Military Square.'

The question being taken thereon and a Division called it passed in
the Negative as follows :

Negative. Aid. Underbill : Van Amringe Morss : M c Queen Buck-


master : Taylor Thorp : Munson Messrs. Bolton : Kip Parker : Board
Schieffelin : Allen

Affirmative. Mr. Recorder Aid. Mesier : King Mr. Stevens.

Mr. Stevens then moved as an amendment to add to the Resolu-
tion ' and also the land de- [97] signated on the Map of the Commis-
sioners as the Military Square.'

The question being taken and a Division being called it passed in
the Negative the Members voting as on the last question.

Mr. Schieffelin then moved as an amendment to add to the Reso-
lution the following ' and that a law be requested from the Legislature
' to enable the Corporation to give up the military Square.'

The question being taken thereon and a Division called it past in
the Negative all the members present voting in the Negative excepting
Messrs. Board & Schieffelin who voted in Affirmative.

The question was then taken on agreeing to the Second Resolution
& a division having been called it was carried in the affirmative as
follows :

Affirmative. Mr. Recorder Aid. Underbill : Buckmaster Thorp :
Munson Messrs. Kip : Parker Board : Schieffelin Allen.

Negative. Aid" Mesier: King Van Amringe : Morss M c Queen:
Taylor Messrs. Bolton: Stevens

The Third Resolution was then read and on the question of agree-
ing to the same it was [98] carried in the Affirmative.

The Fourth Resolution was read when a motion was made to
postpone the further consideration of the subject.

The question being taken thereon and a Division called the Mem-
bers voted as follows:

Affirmative Aldermen Morss M c Queen Buckmaster Taylor
Thorp Munson Messrs. Parker Board Schieffelin Allen

Negative. Mr. Recorder Aldermen Mesier King Underbill Van
Amringe Messrs. Bolton Stevens Kip

So it was carried in the Affirmative and the further consideration
was postponed.

Alderman M c Queen presented the following:

' Resolved that it be referred to a Committee to consider and re-
port on the propriety of prohibiting the Sale of fruit on the sidewalks
and if proper appointing a place where it may be sold."

Which was agreed to & referred to the Street Committee.

[99] Mr. Allen presented the following:

' Resolved that the Street Commissioner be instructed to have a

208 CITY OF NEW YORK 18 Jan. 1819

bridge built over the South corner of the Corporation Slip near the
Washington Market at the corner of Fulton and West Streets."

The Comptroller Reported :

Balance in Treasury II 111 instant 23.29

Reed for Tax 1818 1st 2<i 5th 7th & %th Wards 10,700.

" Vendue Sales 2500.

" Streets 1896.40

" Wells & Pumps 115.81 15,235.50

Accounts Audited.

J. R. Smith Colors for the Regiment of Artillery 238.

Ogden Edwards drafting Sundry laws. &c 174.39

John G. Betts expences in the Weighmaster General's

Office 139.37

Editor of Mercantile Advertiser Six months' subscription

Is inst 75 .

Jacob Morton Index 34 th Vol. Minutes 60.

J. Anderson & W. Concklin Watchmen Witnesses at Ses-
sions 13th instant 4.

J. Smith & W. Kincaid Watchmen Witnesses at Sessions

Hth & 12th ins 4.

[100] Holly Waterbury Watchman Witness at Sessions

llth inst 2.

John Stanley on account paving Crosby Street 200.

John Sloan on account regulating Wooster Street 200.

Higgins & Parks on account filling Rutgers' Slip 600.

Benjamin Hills on account filling Dey Street Basin 500.

Peter M. Alison balce 2d Instalment Pier at Oliver Street 650.

Samuel Jones Jr. Award to open Fourth Street 4850.

Israel Haviland making & repring Engine hose from 28 th

May to 18 Dec. 1818 1268. 17

Rich d Furman Superint* Alms house for working 3 d

Avenue 1000.

R. Furman Sup* of Alms' house for Alms house 2000. 11.964.93

Balance 3270.57

Board adjourned to meet Monday next 5 o'clock.


[101] In Common Council Jan. 25. 1819:

Present. The Hon. Cadwallader D. Colden Mayor President

Richard Riker Esqr. Recorder.

Aldermen Assistants

Peter Mesier Thomas Bolton

Elisha W. King Samuel Stevens

Anth. L. Underbill John J. Westervelt

W. F. Van Amringe Shivers Parker

John Morss David Board

Robert M c Queen Effing m Schieffelin

George Buckmaster Stephen Allen
Jacob B. Taylor
George B. Thorp
Reuben Munson

The minutes of last meeting were read & approved.

A Petition of John Simonson for a Stall in Spring Street Market ;
A Complaint against Bridget Lyons for exhibiting goods for sale on
the Side Walks opposite No. 156 in Front Street; A petition of
Andrew Hutton and Jacob Flager for permission to exchange Stalls,
and a petition from John A. Martin for Stall No. 1 in Corlaer's Hook
Market were severally [102] read and referred to the Market Com-

A Letter was received from Silvanus Miller Esqr. stating that at
the request of Mrs. Sarah Beekman and Mrs. Ann Payne he repre-
sented that for the improving and opening of Roosevelt Street from
Cherry Street eastward ground was taken belonging to their Ward
Miss Sarah B. Payne a Minor and an award therefor amounting to
$9,255 : that owing to the minority of the said Sarah B. Payne the
said sum cannot now be paid over to the guardians : they therefore
propose to the Corporation to make out a Certificate of the amount
aforesaid to draw legal interest until the said infant shall arrive at the
age of 21 years and then to be paid to the said infant or her guardians,
the Certificate to remain in the possession of the Comptroller or other
person appointed by the Corporation who shall be instructed to give
a satisfactory explanation in writing of such trust to said guardians :
that this arrangement will preclude the necessity of applying to the
Supreme Court in relation to this claim and thereby avoid unnecessary
delay and the loss of interest with costs. Whereupon the same was
referred to the Finance Committee.

[103] His Honor the Mayor presented the Return of persons con-
fined in the Bridewell as made by the Keeper. He merely observed
that of those reported as confined there were but nine who were

210 CITY OF NEW YORK 25 Jan. 1819

charged with offences, the residue being vagrants or persons in con-
finement on sentence A state of the prison highly honorable to the
order and morality of the City. He also observed that in his visits
to the Bridwell he had been perfectly satisfied with the cleanliness and
order observed in the prison, in which in his opinion no prison he had
ever visited excelled. The Return was ordered to be filed.

The presentment of the Grand Jury of the 15 th instant, in which
they presented the present regulations of the Stands of the Hackney
Carriages and of the conduct of the Drivers as a Nuisance, was read
and referred to Alderman King Messrs. Allen Parker

A petition of Le Grand Jarvis to be appointed a City Surveyor
was read and referred to the Street Commissioner.

[104] A Complaint from the Inhabitants of the Eighth Ward of
the situation of the pumps in that Ward was read and referred to the
Superintendant of Repairs with directions to attend immediately to
redressing the evils complained of.

A Memorial was received from a Committee from the Governors
of the New York Hospital stating that on the 1 st instant there was
due to the Hospital from the Corporation the sum of $11,880 1 %oo
for the care of lunatics sent to that Institution from the Alms House
and requesting the same might be liquidated. Whereupon the same
was referred to the Finance Committee.

A petition was received from John Young stating that a complaint
had been lodged with the Attorney against a lad named John Stump
for firing a pistol in a yard in the City : that the boy was a foreigner
unacquainted with the laws and was living with him on trial ; and pray-
ing that the proceedings against him may be dismissed. Whereupon it
was resolved that the petitioner have leave to withdraw his petition.

A Memorial was received from John Jacob Astor [105] and others,
requesting the Corporation to sanction and further the views of the
petitioners in an application to the Legislature for the appointment of
Commissioners invested with powers to adjust the level of those streets,
Avenues &c. in this City which have not yet been regulated and to
make such models or plans as may enable the proprietors of real estate
in this City to know how the present surface of their ground is situ-
ated with regard to the permanent regulations which are to be made.
The same being read a motion was made to refer the same to a Com-
mittee. The question being taken thereon it passed in the Negative.
Adlerman King then moved a Resolution that it was inexpedient to
comply with the request of the petitioners which was agreed to. It
was then Resolved that the subject matter of the proposed Memorial


to the Legislature be referred to the Committee on Applications to
the Legislature to propose such measures thereon as they should judge

A Memorial was received from sundry Owners of lots in Frankfort
Street, stating that they understood a petition was to be presented
to the Board for opening Frankfort Street from Chatham Street to
William Street, against which measure they begged [106] leave to
enter their remonstrance. Whereupon the said Memorial was directed
to be laid on the table until the coming in of said petition.

A Memorial was received from Sundry owners of lots in the vi-
cinity of Washington Market stating that by the filling up of the
Basin they experience a great want of accommodation for vessels at
that place and praying that an extensive pier may be run out at the end
of Vesey Street which if turned a few feet to the South from the West
end of the Pier would make a safe and convenient place for vessels.
Whereupon the same was referred to the Committee on Wharves,
Piers & Slips.

A petition of Peter M. Allison, praying payment of the balance of
Contract due to him for erecting the pier at the foot of Oliver Street,
was read and referred to the Finance Committee.

A petition of Henry Rutgers, William B. Crosby, Anna Bancker
and John Withington in behalf of the Baptist Church was received
stating that in the year 1813 the Heirs of Hendrick Rutgers adopted
a plan for widening Henry and Bancker Streets eight feet on each side
[107] which improvement extends between Montgomery and Cath-
arine Streets, a Map of which is on file in the Register's Office : that
it is now in the power of the Corporation to make a great saving to
the Inhabitants when those improvements are made by now reserving
for public use eight feet of the ground in Fayette Street about to be
improved on each side of Henry Street and on the North side of
Bancker Street, and praying that measures may be taken accordingly.
Whereupon the same was referred to the Street Committee.

A petition of Dunbar Sloan was received stating that from unfore-
seen events he had been reduced from respectable circumstances to
indigence and had been compelled to take shelter from absolute want
in the Alms' house : that for Two years past he has been employed as
a Teacher and praying to be allowed some compensation therefor to
be enabled to procure for himself some decent cloathing and to make
his declining years somewhat comfortable. Whereupon the same was
referred to the Alms' House Committee.

A Petition of Hermanus A. Veeder for Appointment of Inspector

212 CITY OF NEW YORK 25 Jan. 1819

of Firewood in the Yards was referred [108] to the Committee on

A Petition of John Weeden and Samuel Hutching, Street In-
spectors, praying for reasons stated in their Memorial an increase of
their salary, was read and referred to the Committee on Public Offices.

A farther petition of Robert Latimer praying remission of a fine
for not having Rates in his Hackney Carriage alledging that the same
occurred from the malice toward him of his Driver whom he had just
discharged, was read and referred to the Attorney with authority, on
the facts appearing as stated in the petition to remit the fine on pay-
ment of costs.

A petition from sundry Lessees of lots in Harman Street, praying
the Corporation will defer the opening of said Street for One year from
the 1 st of May next was read and referred to the Committee on Streets.

A proposition from Charles G. Foster on the subject of lighting
a portion of the City with Gas Light was read and referred to the
Committee on Arts & Sciences.

[109] The Comptroller presented the following Report of the Sales
of 21 lots of ground belonging to the Corporation at the North River
between Dey & Fulton Streets on the 21 st instant which was directed
to be filed Viz :

NO 1.














Philip Brasher






Philip Hone



William H. Ireland



William Howard


West Street

John Suydam






John Van Bussum



George Lorillard



Isaac Concklin





Fulton Street

Philip Hone



Joseph Newton



Charles Dennison



Abraham Valentine



Peter Embury



Garritt Storm



Philip Brasher


do . . . .





[110] The Committee on the Fire Department presented the fol-
lowing :

" Application has been made to the Committee of the Fire Depart-
ment for the purchase of Engine No. 16. Your Committee with the
Chief Engineer have taken the same into consideration and recommend
the sale of the aforesaid Engine : beg leave to offer the following Reso-
lution :

" Resolved that the Chief Engineer be authorised to sell Engine
No. 16 for Five hundred Dollars."


A. L. Underbill
Robert M c Queen

Which was approved & the Resolution agreed to.

The Street Commissioner presented the following Ordinances.
which were passed Viz for rilling and regulating Dey Street from
Washington to West Street, and Abraham Bloodgood, John Targee
and John Brown [er] were appointed Assessors; and one for regulating
Varick Street from Van Dam Street to Clarkson Street, and Abraham
Bloodgood, John Targee and Jacob C. Mott were appointed Assessors.

The City Inspector presented Ordinances for cor- [111] rection of
sundry Nuisances which were passed.

1 James Hart

2 Martin Fury

3 P. Lorillard
R. Duryee

4 P. Lorillard
Joshia L. Dias

5 H. S. Belden

6 J. Schermerhorn
Panton & Wood

7 John Johnson

8 C. Boyd

9 John Brown.

10 John Jones, Agent to estate of

Jno. Jones dec d
George B. Rapelye Occ.

11 Jno. Jones Agent to estate of

Jno. Jones dec d
James Ferris Occ. J

12 Alex r Ming Own. & Occ.

86 Front Street A Lot
88 do do

85 Water Street A Privy

87 do

44 Front Street.

Own. & Occ.
do. & do.
Les. & Occ.




I- 76












214 CITY OF NEW YORK 25 Jan. 1819


P. Lorillard
James Hart


86 Front Street. A Privy


P. Lorillard


Martin Fury


88 do do

(signed) George Cuming City Inspector.

[112] The following persons were appointed Firemen, the Chief
Engineer certifying the Vacancies :

"Fire Engine Company No. 31."

Samuel Williams Carpenter 216 Church St. 5 th ward vice
Moses Marsh Resigned

Samuel Roome Carpenter 39 Provost St. 5 ward vice John
Dennis Resigned.

The Committee on Laws, to whom was referred the petition of
John Hopper, reported:

" That from the best information they can obtain the said gore
has been used as street upwards of fifty years : That by the Act to
regulate Highways all roads and highways which have been used as
such for Twenty years prior to the 21 st day of March 1797 shall be
deemed public Roads and Highways. Your Committee therefore,
believe that whatever title Mr. Hopper may have had to said gore it
is now extinguished by the Statute."

Respectfully submitted

(signed) W. F. Van Amringe
E. W. King
Thomas Bolton

On Motion Resolved that the Street Commissioner be directed
immediately to take measures for the [113] removal of the incum-
brances on Bridge Street.

The Battery Committee, on the petition of D. D. Tompkins &
others, reported :

" That your Committee cannot learn from any Document on file
the circumstances under which the old Boat-house in question was
built but are inclined to think from what they learn from some of
the said proprietors of papers and others that it was originally erected
at the joint expence of those who have heretofore occupied it. Also
your Committee understood, and believe such was the understanding
of the Board at the time the Report on William Van Beuren's petition
was adopted, that the consent then given to erect a new Boat House
was on condition that the Old one should be prostrated and that the


new one should be a complete substitute as to all persons interested
in the Old House. Your Committee beg leave farther to observe that
as the area or surface of Water under the new building is more
spacious than that under the old, and as all parties towit Revenue
Officers, Health Officers and Printers were comfortably accommodated
with room for their respective boats, they can see no reason why the
same accommodation should not [114] be afforded under the new
building, provided the parties as heretofore would only come to an
understanding with each other. Your Committee therefore think it
inexpedient to grant the request for the continuance of said Old Boat
House and recommend the following Resolutions :

" Resolved that the Old Boat House be removed on or before the
day of April next, and that the Street Commissioner attend
to the removal of the same.

" Resolved that those interested in the Materials be permitted to
take and carry away the same."

(signed) Peter Mesier

Jacob B. Taylor
George B. Thorp
Samuel Stevens
John Morss

which was approved and the Resolutions agreed to.

The Street Committee, on the petition of sundry dyers and hatters,
presented a Report which was read and laid for consideration, and it
was resolved that the Attorney be directed not to commence any suits
on the law until [115] the further order of the Board.

A Resolution was presented proposing an Amendment to the law
respecting the Sale of Crabs prohibiting their being sold in the Streets
between the 1 st of December and the 25 th March which was referred
to the Market Committee.

The Report of the Committee on the subject of an Application to
the Legislature to authorise the Corporation to insure against losses
by fire was called up. On motion to consider the same it was agreed
to. The same being read was in the words following:

" That they have communicated their proposition to the different
Fire Insurance Companies on the subject of uniting with the Corpora-
tion in an Application to the Legislature to levy a tax of Ten thousand
Dollars on the different Offices and have received for answer that it
is not expedient to accede to the same.

They therefore farther report

" That by referring to the accounts of the Comptroller for the

216 CITY OF NEW YORK 25 Jan. 1819

last six years it appears that in the Fire Department the sum of
$73,903.45 has been expended, making an annual average expenditure
of $12,951.77: That in the Watch [116] Department, during the
same period, the sum of $302,687.53 has been expended, making an
annual average expenditure of $50,447.92 and That in the Lamp
Department the sum of $20,316.60 has been expended the last year
forming together the annual sum of $83,716.29: That these Three
Departments are intimately connected with each other, for if the City
is well watched and lighted, beside giving security to the persons and
property of our fellow citizens, many of those calamities will be
avoided which proceed from incendiaries as well as the carelessness
of many by arresting the flames before they have acquired a consider-
able ascendancy.

" In a review of the present system it appears to be wholly con-
ducted on erroneous principles. The Corporation by a tax on their
fellow citizens furnish nearly the whole of the apparatus for extin-
guishing of fires. Another class voluntarily give their personal ser-
vices by which a number are called upon more frequently to discharge
the duties of Jurors, and the emoluments arising from Insurance are
put into the pockets of those who hold stock in the different companies
now incorporated.

[117] " The growing importance of our City and the immense sum
with which its Inhabitants are taxed to defray the ordinary expences
force upon your Committee the necessity of providing the ways and
means to relieve their constituents from a portion of these burthens,
and on a full consideration of the whole subject they deem an Appli-
cation to the Legislature to authorise this Corporation to open an
Insurance Company to ensure real and personal estate in the City and
County of New York as affording the means of accomplishing in part
this purpose.

" By a reference to the Books of the Assessors it appears that the
real estate may be estimated at $59,827,285, and the personal estate
at $20,426,806, from which it may be estimated that the property
properly the subject of Insurance may amount to the sum of
$40,000,000, the average rate of Insurance on which, estimated at
y-2 per cent, would produce the sum of $200,000, in which the office
opened by the Corporation would come in for a full proportion of the
public patronage in competition with the present Insurance Companies.

" There are strong considerations to induce your Committee to
believe that a preference would [118] be given to insurance in the
office the Corporation should establish. 1 st as the faith of the whole


City and County would be pledged for a re-imbursement in case of
loss or damage by fire : 2 d 'y Every insurer would to the amount of
his premium beside obtaining security by that very act diminish his
taxes : 3 dly Greater vigilance to prevent fires would be called into
operation not only against the fire-brand of the incendiary but as to
the innumerous acts of negligence now furnishing so copious a source
of these calamities.

" To these views of your Committee they believe not a solid objec-
tion can be urged, and if those that may be urged be carefully
examined they may be traced, they apprehend, to motives of personal

" They therefore confidently recommend the following Resolu-

" Resolved that the application for permission to open such an
Insurance Company shall be made under the direction of this Corpora-
tion and that the Counsel be directed to draw a Bill to be forwarded
with their application comprising this object."

(signed) Jacob B. Taylor
Reuben Munson
David Board

[119] On the question of agreeing to the Resolution the ayes &
nays having been called by Alderman Buckmaster the Members voted
as follows :

Alderman King requested to be excused from voting, as holding
Stock in Insurance Companies he considered himself interested in the
decision of the question. On the question of excusing Alderman King
it passed in the negative.

The votes on the division were as follows :

Negative. Alderman Mesier Underhill Morss Buckmaster Thorp
Messrs. Bolton Stevens Parker Schiefrelin Allen

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