Philip Lansing


Philip Lansing was born in February 1729. He was a younger son of Albany businessman Johannes Lansing, Jr. and his wife, Albany native Geertruy Schuyler Lansing. He grew up in Albany's second ward.

In May 1757, Philip was twenty-eight when he married Albany native Elsie Hun. By 1778, their eight children were baptized in the Albany Dutch church where he was a longtime pewholder and occasional baptism sponsor.

He held a provincial militia commission - serving as a lieutenant under Philip Schuyler as early as 1755. Two decades later, he was called "Major" when he resigned his commission in July 1775.

Philip Lansing was a skipper who carried cargoes on the Hudson for William Johnson and others. During the Seven Years War, he served with the boatman on Lake George.

In 1751, he was appointed constable for the second ward. He also served as firemaster and was paid by the city of performing various tasks. His modest third ward home was listed on city assessment rolls. In 1763, his name appeared on a list of Albany freeholders. In 1790, his house included eleven family members and five slaves.

Early in 1766, he joined his Albany neighbors in signing the constitution of the Albany Sons of Liberty. In July 1777, he was delegated to procure lead and axeheads from his Albany neighbors by the Albany Committee of Correspondence. In August 1778, he was identified as an Assistant QMG. However, he does not seem to have been accorded a bounty right for militia service.

Puzzling (and ostensibly out of character) in regard to his other wartime activities, is a report from CDDC member Isaac D. Fonda from April 1781 that Fonda " . . . had received Information that Philip Lansing who last Spring joined the Enemy is come from Canada and is supposed to be on his way to New York with dispatches. Resolved that it be recommended [that Fonda] obtain the fullest Information of this Matter and endeavour if possible to have the said Philip Lansing apprehended." No follow up information has been found in the organization records.

For the Albany parade celebrating ratification of the United States Constitution in August 1788, "Captain Philip Lansing" was selected to represent the "Captains of vessels" in the processional.

After 1790, the name of sixty-two-year-old Philip Lansing appears to have dropped from Albany rolls!

biography in-progress - 2017


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Philip Lansing is CAP biography number 3648. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. Named for his mother's grandfather, Philip Lansing's life presents fewer challenges in tracking than those of the Johns, Jacobs, and Gerrits of the Lansing. In 2016, this online posting contained additional material.

first posted 3/4/04; recast and updated 5/2/18