Samuel Leggett1,2,3

M, b. 4 October 1782, d. 10 January 1847
FatherThomas Leggett Jr. b. 17 Jan 1755, d. 10 Oct 1843
MotherMary Haight b. 7 Nov 1762, d. 26 Nov 1805
     Samuel was born on Friday, 4 October 1782 in New York. Samuel married Elizabeth Powell circa 1804 in New York. Samuel was the first president of the New York Gas Company. In 1823, he was the first to light his home at no. 7 Cherry Street with gas. This was a three story brick house with a garret. George Washington had lived at no. 1 Cherry Street when he was president. John Hancock lived at no. 5 Cherry Street. He was a man of big ideas & forethought and he knew that the oil lamp would be a thing of the past.
His wife was severly stern & master of her household quite different from that of her husband. They were staunch Quakers. He was more tolerant & easy going as compared to his wife. They had six sons & 7 daughters. He made a gift to Flushing of a church built to have people of all faiths to worship. He & his brothers were among the most noted merchants of the time.4,5,6 Samuel made his will on 21 June 1840 at the Town of Flushing, Queens County, Long Island, New York.

I, Samuel Leggett, of the town of Flushing in the County of Queens, Yeoman, do by these presents, make and publish this my last Will and Testament in manner following, that is to say:
Imprimis: I give, devise and bequeath unto my beloved wife, Elizabeth Leggett, all my household furniture, plate, horses, cattle, and carriages of every kind and description as the same may be found at my decease, together with all grain, grass, hay and produce growing or gathered on my farm at Flushing, where I now reside in the year of my decease forever. And I devise also to my said wife my dwelling house, ground and premises with their appurtenances where I now reside at Flushing, as aforesaid for and during the full end and term of her natural life.
And I further will and devise that she may take (if she so elect) my dwelling house and premises situate at No. 7 (Number Seven) Cherry street, in the City of New York, but she is in no case to take both of said above described premises, and to make her election of the one she chooses within one year after my decease, and I charge which ever of the above described premises my wife may elect, with all taxes or assessments which may be imposed thereon during the term she may enjoy the same.
Item: Al the rest, residue and remainder of my estate, both real and personal, whatsoever and wheresoever, I give, devise and bequeath unto my said wife Elizabeth Leggett, and my children, Mary E. Corse, (wife of Barney Corse) William F. Leggett, Charlotte F. Leggett, Martha Leggett, Rebecca Leggett and Samuel Leggett, Junior, equally share and share alike, saving and excepting from the part or share heretofore advanced to my son William F. Leggett, the sum of Ten thousand dollars, which said sum of Ten thousand dollars is to be estimated as a debt due to my estate from my said son and make up an integral part thereof, but no interest is to be charged thereon against my said son, and as it relates to the shares and portions of my estate which is given and devised to each of my daughters, that the same and each and every on of such shares or portions given to my said daughters, shall be liable to the provisions and trusts hereinafter contained of, and concerning the same that is to say: That the part of each of my said daughters shall be vested in, and held in trust for the following uses and purposes, that is to say: That my Executors and Trustees apply the rents, issues and profits and income of each of my daughters shares or portions of my estate for her maintenance and support, from time to time, as the same shall be received, without the interference of any husband, if she shall be married, during her natural life, and when or as soon as it can be done with security and certainty, that each of the shares or portions of my estate so given to my daughters be separated and made a distinct fund or estate progressively in the collection settlement, sale and liquidation of my estate, real and personal, and that the shares or portions of my estate, devised to my daughters shall not be liable for the debts, contracts or liabilities nor be in any manner controlled by her or either of their husband or husbands.
Item: On the death of either of my daughters her part or portions of my estate so given in trust, shall go to and belong to her right heirs at law, as if she had died a feme sole intestate.
Item: I declare that the devises and provisions hereinbefore made to my wife, shall be taken and received by her in full bar of her dower, right of dower or thirds of, in and to my Real Estate.
Item: I will that each of my sons of lawful age, or when of lawful age, shall be entitled to receive, have and take fully and absolutely his portion or part of my estate herein given to him.
Item: My children who may be minors or infants at my decease, shall be educated, supported and brought up out of the income of my whole estate, until they severally arrive to lawful age, or if a daughter until she shall be married, if such marriage shall take place while she is a minor, and that my said Executors so place the shares, parts or portions of my daughters and each of them; that the income, interest and profits thereof in every case, may and shall be applied for them respectively during their natural lives, and hereinbefore provided for, as shall be in conformity and compliance with the laws of this state, so that their respective parts or portions, and the proceeds of income thereof, shall in no wise be liable to the control or for the debts of their husbands at any time but be applied to and for their separate and sole benefit and use for and during their natural lives respectively.
Item: For the more convenient and profitable division and investiture of my estate, I authorize and empower my Executors to sell and convey from time to time, and at all times, any part or the whole of my Real Estate upon such terms and conditions as shall be deemed most beneficial and to grant the same by proper and lawful deeds and conveyances to purchasers thereof, fully and absolutely in fee simple. The part of the Real Estate which is bequeathed to my wife, and which she may elect as provided is also to be sold as aforesaid after her death. And also all of my real estate collected and sold, and when sold to be converted into and be considered personal Estate, both at law and in equity, but until my real estate is sold and such as shall remain unsold, that my executors have, hold and occupy the same, and rent out or lease the same as they may deem best, and pay or apply the rents issues and profits thereof as hereinbefore directed.
Item: My executors are also empowered to compromise commute or change any debt due to me at my decease, and to leave any disputed claim or demand, I may have against any person to referees, arbitrators or umpires.
Item: Should the provisions of this my Will be doubtful or not according to the laws of this State, as relates to the parts of portions of my daughters, and the uses and trusts created, connected therewith, it is my wish that my Executors have power to vary the same, and the trusts so construed, and the money so applied, that my daughters may have the full benefit of my bounty as hereby intended.
And lastly: I hereby nominate, constitute and appoint my said wife Elizabeth, Executrix, my son William F. Leggett and my brother William H. Leggett, and my brothers-in-law Samuel F. Mott and Thomas W. Pearsall, Executors of, and Trustees under this my last Will and Testament, and also the Guardians of the persons and estates of such of my children as may be minors during their respective minorities giving and granting unto them my said Executors, Trustees and Guardians, full power to perform and execute the acts and duties incidental to their appointments and the trusts herein contained under this my Will, and that my Executors and Trustees may cause Insurances on my edifices against loss or losses by fire, and should any one or more of my houses stores or other buildings be damaged or destroyed, that my Executors have power to repair, re-build or otherwise as they may consider most desirable under all circumstances, out of any funds belonging to my estate, hereby revoking all and every former Will by me at any time made.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and seal to these presents, containing my last Will and Testament, this twenty-first day of 6th month in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty.
Signed, Sealed, Published and Declared by the Testator to be his last Will and Testament, in the presence of us, who at his request, and in his presence, and in the her have subscribed our names as witnesses.
AARON LEGGETT, of the City, County and State of New York and residing in said City.
JOHN J. RING, of the City, County and State of New York and residing in said City.

He wrote a codicil to his will on 17 November 1845.

I, Samuel Leggett, of the Town of Flushing, in the County of Queens and State of New York, do hereby make, execute and publish this as a Codicil to my last Will and Testament, bearing date the 21st day of 6th month, 1840 for the sole purpose of changing the names of some of the Executors therein named, and of appointing others in their places, viz:
Item: I hereby order and direct the names of my brother William H. Leggett, and that of my brother-in-law Thomas W. Pearsall, to be erased and taken from my said Will, hereby annulling and utterly doing away and making void said appointments as Executors of my said Will.
Item: I hereby nominate, constitute and appoint as Executors to my said Will, my son Samuel Leggett, Junior, my sons-in-law Benjamin Cox, and William H. Schermerhorn, which together with William W. Fox, my brother-in-law, are made Executors hereby to act in the place and instead of William H. Leggett and Thos. W. Pearsall, tow of the Executors named in my said Will aforesaid.
Item: In order that I may not be misunderstood my meaning and intent is to constitute, appoint and empower the following named persons to act as Executors and Executrix of my said Will and no others viz: My wife, Elizabeth Leggett, my sons William F. Leggett and Samuel Leggett, Junior, my sons-in-law Benjamin Cox, and William H. Schermerhorn, my brothers-in-law William W. Fox and Samuel F. Mott hereby clothing them with, and conferring upon them all the powers and authority given to the Executors in said Will, in as full and ample a manner as if their names had been inserted therein in every possible thing whether as Executors, Trustees or otherwise.
In Testimony Whereof, I have to these presents as a Codicil to my said Last Will and Testament, set my hand and seal this 17th day of Eleventh month, 1845.
"The word "Will" interlined twice before execution, in presence of us, who have subscribed our names as witnesses in the presence of the Testator who declared this document to be a Codicil to his Last Will and Testament executed by him the 21st day of 6th Mo. 1840.

Samuel departed this life on Sunday, 10 January 1847 in the City, County & State of New York. He was buried at the Town of Flushing, Queens County, Long Island, New York, in the Graveyard of the Flushing Meeting House. His will was probated on 5 June 1847.


Elizabeth Powell b. c 1785, d. 17 Apr 1849


  1. [S1245] Joseph Alfred Scoville, The Old Merchants of New York City, New York

    , Page 241…Of Samuel Leggett I shall have more to say as I get along. He walked through this world treading as softly as any Quaker merchant, yet in his earlier years he trod heavily in the commercial and financial walks. He was President for many years of the famed Franklin Bank, that he got an injunction upon, and stopped it at twenty minutes past ten o'clock on the morning of the 29th May, 1828, thirty-five years ago.
    Page 248-249…the same Samuel Leggett was the first originator of a gas company in this city in 1822. He was the first President of the New York Gas Light Company. His brother-in-law, W. W. Fox, succeeded him, and has continued President to this day. He is a man over 70 years of age. This company went into operation on the 26th of March, 1823. Its charter is unlimited. The original capital was $1,000,000.
    Samuel Leggett was one of the best men of his time. Like other benevolent men of every age he was persecuted for not exposing the defects of the false and pretentious with whom he had become acquainted. Mr. Leggett had two sons ; one of them is Secretary of the Brooklyn Insurance Company. A daughter married Barney Corse.
  2. [S1247] Martha J. Lamb, History of the Ciy of New York: It's Origin, Rise, and Progress, page 728 - . . . He [Samuel Leggett] introduced gas into his own handsome private residence in Franklin Square [1823].
  3. [S1248] Samuel Leggett, The Explanation and Vindication of Samuel Leggett, late president of the Franklin Bank of the City of New York
    , [Out of print - could be interesting to find].
  4. [S79] William Wade Hinshaw, Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy, Volume III: page 204 - Samuel d 1847; m Eliza ---- (mo before 4-3-1805) (H); Children: Mary E.
    William F., Charlotte F., Martha, Margaret d 10-11-1831 ae 5y 10m 2d, Samuel Jr. b 9-10-1828, Rebecca F. (not a mbr)
    Samuel con mo, first 4 ch recrq of father 4-7-1819; Eliza recrq 4-4-1821; all dis 1829-1839 (O).
  5. [S249] Samuel Leggett and His Historic Gas - Lighting Experiment.
  6. [S349] Roeser, & Storck Ferriss, Petition & Order To Show Cause In The Matter Of The Application For The Appointment Of A Trustee To Execute The Power Of Sale Remaining Unexecuted Conferred By The Last Will & Testament Of Thomas Leggett, Deceased.