Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Obituary of Richard L. Morris of Pelham Published on June 15, 1880

Richard L. Morris was an illustrious resident of Pelham during the 19th century. He had a "country home" in the Town. He was a grandson of Lewis Morris, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. He died at his home in Pelham on June 14, 1880. An obituary appeared in the June 15, 1880 issue of The Sun, published in New York City. The text of that obituary appears below.



Grandson of One of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Dr. Richard L. Morris died yesterday morning in his country residence at Pelham, Westchester County. While ascending the stone steps in the rear of the old mansion, four years ago, he fell, and was afterward an invalid, but able to walk at times until his last and fatal illness attacked him about ten days ago. Before that accident he was robust and hearty, entering into all the pleasures and enjoyments of younger persons. The mansion is on the shore of the Sound and his chief delight at twilight was to sit on the veranda, surrounded by his family, and watch the sailing vessels and steamboats pass by an opening in the grove at the foot of the lawn. He was tall and stout, being six feet and three inches in height, and weighing more than 200 pounds. He had a genial nature, and was a friend to many in more humble circumstances. He leaves a wife and five children.

Dr. Morris was born in the old Morris homestead at Morrisania on Nov. 4, 1805. He was one of the twelve children of James Morris. His grandfather, Lewis Morris, half brother of Gouverneur Morris, was a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and he had his manor laid waste in consequence thereof. Dr. Morris entered Hamilton College in 1821, but he remained there only a year. Afterward he entered Columbia College, and was graduated in 1826. Then he studied in the New York Medical College, and subsequently he studied in the office of Dr. Alex H. Stevens, a celebrated surgeon, who married one of Dr. Morris's sisters. Dr. Morris took little interest in politics, and he held only two public offices -- that of Health Commissioner from 1818 to 1852, and that of Health Officer from 1852 to 1854. He had lived at 9 St. Marks place, but after he retired from office he went to Mamaroneck to live. A year afterward he purchased the Le Roy mansion at Pelham and began to lead a quiet life.

The funeral services are to be performed on Thursday in St. Peter's Church, Westchester, of which Dr. Morris was the warden until a year ago. The body is to be placed in the Morris Family vault."

Source: Dr. Morris's Death, The Sun, Jun. 15, 1880, p. 1, col. 6.

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At 6:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, Can you possibly tell me the names of Dr. Richard Morris'12 sibling?
I am trying to find Sarah Maria Morris, born in 1811, perhaps to James Morris also. Thanks so much, carla@belniak.com


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