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John Laurance (1750 near Falmouth, England – November 11, 1810 New York City) was an American lawyer and politician from New York.


He read law and entered private practice in 1772 in New York City. He joined the Continental Army in 1775, and was Judge Advocate General from 1777 to 1782. He was a member of the board that convicted Maj. John André of spying and sentenced André to be executed by hanging.

He was a member from Westchester County of the New York State Assembly in 1782-83, and from New York County in 1784-85. He was a delegate to the Continental Congress from 1785 to 1787. He was a member of the New York State Senate (Southern District) from 1788 to 1790, but vacated his seat after the Legislature enacted in January 1790 a law that made it impossible to be a member of Congress and the State Legislature at the same time.

Laurance was elected as a Federalist to the 1st and 2nd United States Congresses, serving from March 4, 1789, to March 3, 1793.

Laurance was nominated by George Washington to the federal bench on May 5, 1794, to the seat vacated by James Duane on the United States District Court for the District of New York. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on May 6, and received his commission on the same day. He resigned from the bench on November 8, 1796, after his election as U.S. Senator from New York. He took his seat on December 8, 1796, but resigned from the Senate in August 1800.


United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 2nd congressional district

1789 - 1793
Succeeded by
John Watts
United States Senate
Preceded by
Rufus King
United States Senator (Class 3) from New York
1796 - 1800
Served alongside: Aaron Burr, Philip Schuyler, John S. Hobart, William North, James Watson, Gouverneur Morris
Succeeded by
John Armstrong, Jr.
Political offices
Preceded by
Theodore Sedgwick
President pro tempore of the United States Senate
December 6–27, 1798
Succeeded by
James Ross


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