WILLIAM HENDERSON of  Henderson, New York
   

 

William Henderson in most written articles is simply stated to have been a land speculator, and with that
labeling, comes all the connotations that such a label assigns to a person.  Over the last 5 years we have
been conducting research on William Henderson and have come to see this man for whom our town is
named, as much more than a person who invested in the various tracts of land that were available after the American Revolution opened up those lands in New York State.  Many men of his time invested in land,
with the hope of making some money, and most it seems never realized that ambition, and this
situation weighed heavily on William Henderson when he was in Albany, in the fall of 1825 trying to
straighten out some of the problems that this ambition had brought to him.

William Henderson was born in 1767, place unknown but believe to be Scotland, and of parents unknown.
Henderson appears upon the scene in New York City and marries Sarah Denning on June 4, 1798 at the
Trinity Church, New York City, the daughter of William and Sarah Hawxhurst Denning.  It is interesting to
note that in the movie, "National Treasure", the treasure that everyone is seeking is located in the Trinity
Church and it has been a source of interest when viewing the movie to think about the times that
William Henderson, his family and father-in-law were in the church.  William Denning, Henderson's
father-in-law was himself a player in the American Revolution, being involved in the finances of the
war, and having met with George Washington on number of occasions. 

William and Sarah Denning Henderson would have three children; James H. Henderson, William Denning Henderson, and Mary Elizabeth Henderson.  William and Mary would marry into the Livingston and Lyman
families and stay in the New York-Boston area, and James would move West and remain there until his death.

William Henderson was involved in local politics in New York City, Banking, the theatre, the Tontine Coffee House,
and was one of about 100 persons who contributed to the secret fund that was established for the children of
Alexander Hamilton after Aaron Burr killed him in their famous duel.

We hope to compile most of our findings in a book to be released in 2007 on this most interesting man, a man
who as one person in New York City commented to me, "This man was involved in most of the activities of his
time, and has never been written about."  We wish to remedy that situation.

 

 

 

 

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