Elizabeth Spencer Merchant


Elizabeth Spencer was born in 1759. According to traditional sources, she was the daughter of the Reverend Elihu Spencer and his wife, Joanna Eaton, of Trenton, New Jersey. Her father was a missionary and Patriot leader.

About 1780, she married New Jersey-born, Albany schoolmaster George Merchant. Over the decade that followed, their numerous offspring had been christened in Albany churches. Later, her name appeared on Presbyterian membership rolls.

For more than thirty years these Merchants were Albany mainstays - living in several residences and also keeping a boarding house.

Elizabeth Spencer Merchant died in July 1814 at the age of fifty-five. She was buried in the Episcopal church cemetery plot. Her husband died in 1830. In 1833, her sons erected a monument in the cemetery that called her their "tender and beloved mother."

biography in-progress


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

first posted: 12/10/05