James Furnival


Known variously, James Furnival (Furnwall) lived in Albany during the late 1770s. Perhaps he was the James Furnival who was an officer in the Continental artillery from Massachusetts who was sent to General Schuyler in 1777 under guard. He is said to have served at the Battle of Saratoga

Probably during the 1770s, he signed in at the Albany Masonic lodge.

His wife was named Mary. Perhaps their marriage was childless as no children appear to have been christened in early Albany churches.

In August 1778, James and Mary bought or leased five or six lots along King Street (Lion Street) from the city of Albany.

In 1779, his house and lot in the second ward was assessed moderately. However, his personal property was accorded a more substantial assessment.

However, by November 1778, Furnival/Furnwall had come under the scrutiny of the Albany Commissioners for Detecting and Defeating Conspiracies. Identified as an innkeeper, he posted a bond and later was arrested for recruiting soldiers for the British army. He was released on bond and his promise of good behavior.

After 1779, the name of James Furnival has not been found in the community-based record.

Perhaps he was among the loyalists who emigrated to Canada! We appreciate that many essential questions remain surrounding the brief Albany life of this individual.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of James Furnival has not been assigned a CAP biography number. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.

first posted: 3/25/10