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Samuel Osgood


In office
September 26, 1789 – August, 1791
Preceded by (none)
Succeeded by Timothy Pickering

Born February 3, 1747
Andover, Massachusetts, USA
Died August 12, 1813
New York City, New York, USA
Political party Federalist
Alma mater Harvard University
Profession Politician, Lawyer
Military service
Service/branch Militia
Continental Army
Battles/wars American Revolutionary War

Samuel Osgood (February 3, 1747 – August 12, 1813) was an American merchant and statesman from Andover, Massachusetts. He served in the Massachusetts and New York state legislatures, represented Massachusetts in the Continental Congress and was the first Postmaster General under the United States Constitution.

Contents

Early life

John Osgood came to Massachusetts from Andover in England in 1638. In 1646 he started a new settlement there and named it Andover for his home town. Four generations later, Captain Peter Osgood lived there and in 1748 he had a third son whom he named Samuel.

Samuel attended Dummer Academy (now The Governor's Academy), and then Harvard College, where he studied theology and graduated in 1770. But he returned to Andover and followed a mercantile career. He joined the local militia, was elected to represent the town in the colonial assembly and in 1775 to the provincial congress that functioned as a revolutionary government.

The Revolution

Osgood led a local company of minutemen into the Battle of Lexington and Concord in the spring of 1775. They followed the retreating British, and became part of the Siege of Boston. As more troops assembled, he was made Major of a brigade while serving at Cambridge. He became an aide to General Artemas Ward, and was promoted to Colonel. When the siege succeeded in the spring of 1776 Osgood left the army and returned to the provincial congress.

The Provincial Congress named Osgood to the Massachusetts Board of War and he served there until 1780 when the government was reorganized. He was a delegate to the state's constitutional convention in 1779-1780. Under the new Constitution he was elected to the Massachusetts State Senate in 1780. That same year the new government named Osgood as one of their delegates to the Continental Congress and he served there from 1782 until 1784.

After a brief term in the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1784, the governor appointed Osgood a judge in 1785 but he soon resigned when the National Congress made him a commissioner of the Treasury later that year. He moved to New York City to take up this office, which he held until the Congressional Government ended.

Postmaster General and New York career

When a new U.S. government was installed in 1789, President Washington appointed Osgood the first Postmaster General under the new U.S. Constitution. When the Federal Government moved to Philadelphia for a ten-year period before finally settling in Washington, D.C., Osgood chose to remain in New York and resigned his post in 1791.

In 1800, Osgood was elected to the New York State Assembly, and served there until 1803. In 1801 he was its Speaker. In 1803, he was appointed to a national post as chief naval officer for the port of New York, a position he held until his death. In 1812, he was elected the first President of the then newly-formed City Bank of New York, which later became Citibank, predecessor of today's Citigroup.

Osgood was a member of American Philosophical Society, and in his later years devoted time to writing and study. He had an extensive correspondence with George Washington and Thomas Jefferson among others. He died at home in New York in 1813 and was buried in the Brick Presbytian Church in Manhattan The church was located at what is now at Fifth Avenue and Thirty-seventh street.

Two streets in North Andover, Massachusetts are named after him and a portrait hangs in the U.S. Senate.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Ebenezer Hazard
(Continental Congress)
United States Postmaster General
September 26, 1789 – August 1791
Succeeded by
Timothy Pickering
Preceded by
Dirck Ten Broeck
Speaker of the New York State Assembly
1801
Succeeded by
Thomas Storm
Business positions
Preceded by
None
President of City Bank of New York
1812 – 1813
Succeeded by
William Few
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Simple English

Samuel Osgood

In office
September 26, 1789 – August, 1791
Preceded by (none)
Succeeded by Timothy Pickering

Born February 3, 1747
Andover, Massachusetts, USA
Died August 12, 1813
New York City, New York, USA
Political party Federalist
Profession Politician, Lawyer

Samuel Osgood (February 3, 1747August 12, 1813) was an American merchant and statesman from Andover, Massachusetts. He served in the Massachusetts and New York state legislatures, represented Massachusetts in the Continental Congress and was the first Postmaster General under the United States Constitution.


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