George Douglas

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George Douglas, a Scot, son of John Douglas and Mary Heron, was a New York merchant who worked closely with his brothers, Sir William Douglas of Castle Douglas, James Douglas of Orchardton and Samuel.

•   Extract from: Miss Douglas of New York: a biography -
George Douglas, the father of Harriet and the only one of the four brothers to settle permanently in America, was a thrifty, ... He married, in 1784, Margaret Corne, daughter of Captain Peter Corne, an Englishman by birth. ... Instead, he fell in love with a lady of Dutch descent, the daughter of Dirck Benson, a merchant in New York, married her and built a country house in the neighbourhood of the city.

•  Of New York
The Douglas brothers were industrious Scot descents who arrived in New York during the 1760's destined to become wealthy. The Douglas fortune was mainly acquired through various businesses in New York and London, and by farming in Scotland. Of the four, two brothers returned to Scotland and acquired large tracts of land in Galloway. William Douglas built Gelston Castle and his brother James founded the town of Castle Douglas (sic).

•  George Douglas was the only brother to permanently settle in America and eventually married Margaret Corne.

Margaret Corne was the daughter of Captain Peter Corne and a granddaughter of Dr. James Henderson. The royal grant was passed down to Margaret who was the first of Dr. Henderson’s heirs to take an interest in the lands up in the Mohawk Valley. With her husband George Douglas, she had some land cleared and surveyed, then had a twenty-four room summer Cottage built in 1787.

Margaret and George Douglas had five children: Margaret (1787), Harriett (1790), George (1793), William (1795), and Elizabeth Mary (1799). George died of yellow fever at his wife’s home at King’s Ferry on the Hudson River.

•  Extract from: American Biography: A New Cyclopedia - Volume 53 - Page 258 - Douglas Robinson's great-grandfather, George Douglas of Castle Douglas, Scotland, married Margaret Corne, ... Company, and in 1905 appointed receiver of the Merchants Trust Company, with the New York Trust Company as co-receiver.

•  Extract from: The First Four Hundred: Mrs. Astor's New York in the Gilded Age - George Douglas was a Scottish merchant, a hard worker and a very successful businessman, not a man of culture; “His ... He had a socially ambitious wife, Margaret Corné, who was anxious to entertain the best of New York Society at their ...

•  Elizabeth Come Dyckman (1776-1823), Margaret Corne Douglas's niece, lived at Boscobel, a manor on the Hudson River.

•  ROBINSON, Douglas, Warren, was born in Lancashire(sic: Lanarkshire), Scotland, March 24, 1824, a son of William Rose and Mary (DOUGLAS) ROBINSON. The subject of our sketch was educated in Edinboro University, and in 1841 he came to this country and engaged in business in New York City. He married on November 14, 1850, Fanny MONROE, who was born in New York City, a daughter of James and Elizabeth Mary (DOUGLAS) MONROE. Her grandfather, Andrew MONROE, was a brother of President MONROE, and served in the Revolutionary war. He was captured by the enemy, but managed to escape, and finally died on his estate in Westmoreland, Va. His ancestor was Andrew MONROE, a cavalier, who came from Scotland in 1642 and settled on a grant of land from Charles II. Andrew MONROE married FannyGARNETT, and they had two children, James and Augustin. James MONROE was born in Virginia, September 7, 1779, and graduated from West Point in 1816. He served in various wars, and was a member of Congress two terms and of the New York Assembly. He married in 1822 a daughter of George and Margaret DOUGLAS, born in New York City in 1779, and settled in New York City. Of his six children three survived, William, Elizabeth M. and Fanny. The Henderson House. ---The patentee was James HENDERSON of Scotland, who married Letitia BENSON, and had six daughters, one of whom, Letitia, married Captain CORNE, and her daughter, Margaret married George DOUGLAS of Scotland, and had six children: Elizabeth, Margaret, Harriet, George, William and Mary. Harriet inherited from her mother the Henderson property, and married Henry CRUGER, a lawyer, and died childless, and her niece, Mrs. Douglas ROBINSON, inherited the property. She was a daughter of James MONROE, of Virginia, who was a nephew of President MONROE.

•  William Douglas, son of George and Margaret Come, was born in the City of New York in the year 1794. He became associated in business with his brother George, remained a bachelor, accumulated a fortune, and apparently lived a quiet, retired life for many years at 28 Park Place. He died May 29, 1863, at his residence, 100 West 14th Street, in his sixty- ninth year. His nephew William Proctor Douglas received the bulk of his fortune, which in 1845 was estimated at $700,000.

•  According to Marian Campbell Gouverneur (daughter-in-law of Samuel L. Gouverneur, himself a nephew and son-in-law of President Monroe), "George Douglas was a Scotch merchant who hoarded closely. His wine cellar was more extensive than his library."



Sources for this article include:
  • Miss Douglas of New York; Angus Davidson; 1952
  • and others as listed above.

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