Morris, Gouverneur (1752-1816)

New York statesman and diplomat.

Graduated from King’s College, New York (1768). Studied law, was admitted to the bar (1771), and commenced practice in New York City.

Member of the New York provincial congress (1775-77). Lieutenant colonel in the State militia (1776). Appointed to the committee to organize a new form of state government (1776). Member of the first state Assembly (1777-78) and the first council of safety (1777). Delegate to the Continental Congress (1778-79). A signer of the Articles of Confederation (1778).

Following his defeat for reelection to the Continental Congress, he moved to Philadelphia (1779). Served under Robert Morris (to whom he was not related) as assistant superintendent of finance (1781-85). Pennsylvania delegate to the Constitutional Convention (1787). Returned to New York (1788).

Went to France as Robert Morris’ agent (1789). Minister Plenipotentiary to France (1792-94). Traveled throughout Europe before returning to the United States (1798). Elected as a Federalist to the United States Senate (1800-03), to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of James Watson. Unsuccessful candidate for reelection (1802). Served as chairman of the Erie Canal commission (1810-13). Author on various legal and political subjects.

Born at Morrisania (now a part of New York City), New York. Half brother of Lewis Morris. Uncle of Lewis Richard Morris. Married in 1809 to Anne Carey Randolph; one son.