Margaret Vernor Tayler Cooper


Margaret Vernor was born about 1774. She was said to have been the daughter of innkeeper's son John Vernor and his wife, carpenter's daughter Eva Van Valkenburgh Vernor. Her mother was dead by 1778. After that, she went to live with her aunt, the wife of newcomer John Tayler. Subsequently, she appears to have been adopted by the otherwise childless couple. Her father, however, lived until 1825.

Tayler was an aspiring businessman with extensive holdings in what became Saratoga County. Before the end of the war, he had set up house in Albany - ultimately at what became 50 State Street.

In 1787, the newspaper reported that she was a student at the Washington Academy (George McElcheran's school at the North gate) in Albany and that she had passed her exams in February - taking second place in writing.

By 1792, the still teen-aged "Peggy" had married newcomer Charles D. Cooper. Their marriage produced a number of children who were christened in Albany churches. The couple lived with John Tayler as Peggy became mistress of the house after her step-mother died in 1796. Later, the Coopers maintained their own home at 66 North Pearl Street.

However, her stepfather would never be far from her care. In 1827, John Tayler remembered her in his will granting the "remainder of my estate to Margaret Cooper, daughter of John Vernor, wife of Charles De Kay Cooper, in testimony of my love and affection. The said Margaret, who I adopted in infancy, treated as my child - spent life with me and who acts most tender with me in filial affection administering my wants in sickness and health with zeal and pious devotion to my welfare as if she had been my bone and flesh of my flesh."

Tayler died in 1829. Charles D. Cooper lived until 1831. Margaret Vernor Tayler Cooper died in March 1860 at the age of eighty-seven. She was buried in the Dutch church cemetery.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Margaret Vernor Tayler Cooper is CAP biography number 2093. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.

An unlocated portrait of her was noted in the catalogue of the works of Ezra Ames.

first posted: 1/20/08