William C. Bouck papers, 1727-1866.
Collection Number: 2206

Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
Cornell University Library


William C. Bouck papers, 1727-1866.
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
Collection Number:
Correspondence, appointment papers, official documents, and other papers chiefly relating to Bouck's political career.
Bouck, William C., 1786-1859.
Cornell, Katherine Bouck.
Cornell, William B. (William Bouck), 1883-
Church, Edgar A.
2.6 cubic feet.
4 microfilm reels.
Collection material in English


Sheriff of Schoharie County, 1812-1814; member of the New York State Assembly, 1813-1814; Postmaster, West Middlebury, N.Y., 1821; member of the New York State Canal Commission, 1821-1840; Governor of New York State, 1843-1844; Assistant U.S. Treasurer at New York City, 1846-1849.


Correspondence, appointment papers, official documents, and other papers chiefly relating to Bouck's political career include incoming letters concerning his duties as sheriff, the revision of regulations concerning the militia, and state and local politics. Also, considerable correspondence and reports on construction and repair of the Erie, Chemung, Chenango, Champlain, and Crooked Lake Canals, also information on technical problems, seasonal openings and closings, and labor procurement, 1830-1842; letters on political struggles over the enlargement of the canal, on internal improvements in general, on U.S. Mail contracts in Schoharie County, on his campaigns for the governorship in 1840 and 1842, and on the antirent movement in Scoharie and Rensselaer Counties. Correspondence as governor concerns appointments, reform of the judiciary, revision of state constitution, temperance, inspection of foodstuffs in Albany and New York City, Sabbath observances, conditions at state prisons with special attention to facilities for women, minors, and the insane, a Quaker's request for remission of fines under militia law, Candor residents' objections to the use of schools for religious meetings, sale of Oneida Indian Reservation land, state politics, the Barnburner-Hunker factionalism in the Democratic Party, and pre-Civil War tensions.
Later correspondence relates to Bouck's employment by the U.S. Treasury Department and to state and national politics. Other materials include deeds, bills of seizure, and other documents pertaining to the sale of lands in Schoharie County and adjacent areas. Additional items include New York State Militia commissions; copies of wills and probate papers, and other legal documents of Bouck, his father, Christian, and his grandfather William; papers relating to Bouck's Wisconsin land investments and his rental incomes and other personal and family business; estate inventory of Cornelius Feeck; and business papers of Benjamin and Juliet Best and John Ferguson. There are also papers regarding Bouck's activities in the Lutheran Church, including report on Hartwick Seminary property and correspondence on domestic and foreign missions. Miscellaneous items include letters on a portrait of Bouck by Charles Loring Elliott, a letter from John H. Bartholomew on conditions in Chicago in 1856, letters and advertisements on medical cures, and many pamphlets and reports. Correspondents include Daniel S. Dickinson, Lewis Cass, Samuel Beardsley, Jabez D. Hammond, Dorothea Dix, William L. Marcy, and others.
Includes a 1755 Royal land grant, with seal, from George II to William Bouck "confirmed a grant from the Indian occupants in 1747, [to] the property so long known as the Governor Bouck's farm, including Bouck Island" in the town of Fulton, Schoharie County, New York State. The farm was owned by the Bouck family until its sale in 1925 by Katherine Bouck Cornell and William Bouck Cornell to Edgar A. Church.
Other Finding Aids:

The original guide to the collection (a pdf file that uses bookmarks) contains additional information that might be useful to researchers, such as a list of correspondence related to Martin Van Buren.


Schoharie County Historical Society. The Quarterly Bulletin. Apr. 1943: vol. 7, num. 2.
Hagan, Edward A. William C. Bouck : New York's Farmer Governor. Westminster, MD: Heritage Books, 2006.
Processing Information:

The collection was originally processed in 1962 (Accession 1). A second set of papers was added to the collection in 1963 (Accession 2), and the royal land grant was received in 1998.
Alternate Form Available:

Materials from Accession 1 are also available on microfilm. Reel 1 consists of Political and Business Papers from 1771-1844 while Reel 2 covers 1845-1859. Reel 3 consists of New York State Canal Commission Papers from 1827-1851.


Cite As:

William C. Bouck papers, #2206. Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library.


See also Cornell-Bouck Family Papers, #8502,http://resolver.library.cornell.edu/cgi-bin/EADresolver?id=RMM08502. Also Peter Gansevoort letter to William C. Bouck, Archives 4600-1123.


Cass, Lewis, 1782-1866.
Dickinson, Daniel S. (Daniel Stevens), 1800-1866.
Dix, Dorothea Lynde, 1802-1887.
Marcy, William L. (William Learned), 1786-1857.
Beardsley, Samuel, 1790-1860.
Hammond, Jabez D.
Bouck, Christian W.
Elliott, Charles Loring.
Bartholomew, John H.
Feeck, Cornelius.
Best, Benjamin.
Bouck family.
New York (State). Legislature. Assembly
New York (State). Governor (1843-1844 : Bouck)
Democratic Party (N.Y.)
United States. Treasury Department
New York (State). Militia
Chicago (Ill.) -- Description and travel.
New York (State) -- Politics and government -- 19th century.
Crooked Lake Canal (N.Y.)
Champlain Canal (N.Y.)
Chenango Canal (N.Y.)
Chemung Canal (N.Y.)
Erie Canal (N.Y.)
Oneida Indian Reservation (N.Y.)
Public lands -- Wisconsin.
Real property -- Wisconsin.
Real property -- New York (State)
Medicine, Popular.
Lutheran Church -- Missions.
Indians Reservations -- New York (State)
Indians of North America -- New York (State) -- Land tenure.
Church and state.
Conscientious objectors -- New York (State)
Women prisoners -- New York (State)
Prisons -- New York (State)
Sabbath legislation -- New York (State)
Food adulteration and inspection -- New York (State)
Anti-rent War, New York, 1839-1846.
Elections -- New York (State)
Postal service -- New York (State) -- Schoharie County.
Canals -- New York (State)
Sheriffs -- New York (State) -- Schoharie County.

Box 1 Folder 1-37
Political and Business Papers (Accession 1)
1771-1859, undated
Box 1 Folder 38-43
New York State Canal Commission Papers
1827-February 1835
Box 2 Folder 1-17
New York State Canal Commission Papers
March 1835-1851, undated
Box 2 Folder 18-41
Political and Business Papers (Accession 2)
1798-March 1845
Box 3 Folder 1-25
Political and Business Papers (Accession 2)
April 1845-1859, undated
Business and Family Papers
Mapcase Folder 1
Business and Family Papers
Mapcase Folder 1
Royal land grant, with seal, from George II to William Bouck
Oversize Materials
Mapcase Folder 3
Indenture between Joseph Bouck and John Gebhard
March 21, 1815 - March 17, 1823
Mapcase Folder 3
Newspaper clipping listing various laws passed in New York, several of which involve the canals
Mapcase Folder 3
Map of Milwaukee
Mapcase Folder 2
Report of the Commissary General on the state of the arsenal
March 29, 1842
Mapcase Folder 2
Bill for various goods
March 16, 1843
Mapcase Folder 2
Bill for envelopes, paper and similar goods
Mapcase Folder 2
By-laws of the National Life Insurance Company of the United States
Mapcase Folder 2
List of public property in Assistant Treasurer's office