Catherine Van Rensselaer
Catherine Van Rensselaer Schuyler c. 1795 by Walter Robinson
BornNovember 10, 1734
DiedMarch 7, 1803 (aged 68)
Albany, New York
Spouse(s)
(m. 1755)
Children15, including Angelica, Elizabeth, Catherine Schuyler, Cornelia Schuyler, Margarita, Philip
Parent(s)Johannes Van Rensselaer
Angelica Livingston
FamilyVan Rensselaer, Schuyler

Catherine Van Rensselaer Schuyler /ˈsklər/;, also known as "Kitty", (November 10, 1734 – March 7, 1803)[1] was a Colonial and post-Colonial American socialite and the matriarch of the prominent colonial Schuyler family as wife of Philip Schuyler.[2]

Early life

Kitty was born in 1734 to Col. Johannes Van Rensselaer (1708–1783), called the "Patroon of Greenbush,"[3] and Engeltie "Angelica" Livingston (1698–1747). As a child, she was known as "The Morning Star."[2] Due to her family's social position, she was a part of the society of Albany and, once a year, would visit relatives in order to acquire "the polish of fashionable society" by being at the Court of the Royal Governor of New York."[2]

Her paternal great-grandfather was Hendrick van Rensselaer and her 2x great-grandfather was Kiliaen Van Rensselaer, one of the original founders of the Dutch colony, New Amsterdam. Her maternal grandparents were Robert Livingston the Younger (1663–1725) and Margarita Schuyler (b. 1682), the daughter of Pieter Schuyler (1657–1724), the first mayor of Albany.[4][5]

She was the tenth great granddaughter of Robert II of Scotland.

Life

Kitty was once described as "a lady of great beauty, shape and gentility" and was subject to a number of suitors in the future.[6]

Kitty's husband, Philip Schuyler, was known as a man of great wealth and intelligence as he commanded a militia in the French and Indian War and still managed to assume ownership of the large estate given to him by his father. Kitty was known as "a capable wife, mother..., and manager of the extensive Schuyler household of servants, slaves, and hired hands."[6]

Personal life

Schuyler Mansion, which was constructed from 1761 to 1765.
Schuyler Mansion, which was constructed from 1761 to 1765.
Mrs. Schuyler Burning Her Wheat Fields on the Approach of the British, painting by Emanuel Leutze, 1852.
Mrs. Schuyler Burning Her Wheat Fields on the Approach of the British, painting by Emanuel Leutze, 1852.

On September 17, 1755, Catherine was married to Philip Schuyler at the Albany Dutch Church.[2] Philip was the son of Cornelia Van Cortlandt (1698–1762) and Mayor Johannes Schuyler Jr. (1697–1741), the third generation of the Dutch family in America.[7] Together, Philip and Catherine had 15 children, eight of whom survived to adulthood, including:

Catherine died of a stroke in March 1803 at the age of 68.[2][16]

References

  1. ^ At the time of her marriage on September 17, 1755, she was aged 20 years, 9 months, and 27 days.
  2. ^ a b c d e Humphreys, Mary Gay (1897). Catherine Schuyler. Cambridge, U.S.A.: Charles Scribner's Sons. p. 22. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  3. ^ "Women of the American Revolution - Catharine Schuyler". www.americanrevolution.org. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  4. ^ Livingston, Edwin Brockholst (1910). The Livingstons of Livingston Manor. New York: Knickerbocker Press. p. 562.
  5. ^ Schuyler, George W. Colonial New York: Philip Schuyler and His Family, Vol. 1, Charles Scribner's Sons, 1885
  6. ^ a b Rogow, Arnold (1999). A Fatal Friendship: Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr. Macmillan. ISBN 9780809016211. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  7. ^ Gerlach, Don R. (1964). Philip Schuyler and the American Revolution in New York, 1733-1777. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press. p. 17.
  8. ^ "Republican Court: Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton (1757-1854)". www.librarycompany.org. Retrieved 2015-09-30.
  9. ^ a b c d e Schuyler Family Bible, Collections of Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site, Albany, NY.
  10. ^ a b c Contributions for the Genealogies of the First Settlers of the Ancient County of Albany, from 1630 to 1800
  11. ^ Eliza Hamilton The Extraordinary Life and Times of the Wife of Alexander Hamilton by Tilar J. Mazzeo
  12. ^ Schuyler, George W. (1885). Colonial New York: Philip Schuyler and His Family, Volume 2. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. p. 282.
  13. ^ Bielinski, Stefan. "Rensselaer Schuyler". New York State Museum. Retrieved 22 April 2017.
  14. ^ "This Day in History: Cornelia Schuyler and Washington Morton are married!". Facebook: Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site. October 7, 2015. Retrieved 8 April 2016.
  15. ^ Schuyler, George W. (1885). Colonial New York: Philip Schuyler and His Family, Volume 2. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. p. 283.
  16. ^ "Catherine Van Rensselaer Schuyler". exhibitions.nysm.nysed.gov. New York State Museum. Retrieved 10 August 2017.