Eli Arnold


Eli Arnold lived in Albany from the mid-1770s until after 1790. He probably was born during the 1750s or before. Most likely, he was of New England origins.

Arnold came to Albany during the War for Independence. His name first appeared on a list of Albany people who, in May 1775, contributed varying sums (Arnold gave 8 shillings) for the relief of Ticonderoga.

Pension records show that in 1776 he was a captain serving under William Duer in the procurement of supplies for the American forces.

In January 1778, "Captain Eli Arnold" and about fifteen of "his" soldiers went to the house of a John Winn, and "abused" (probably berated) him. Winn and other coopers had been employed by Arnold but they were drunk on duty according to the minutes of the Albany Commissioners.

In May 1778, Arnold was among those Albany residents who signed a petition in favor of condemned horse thief and former Albany resident William Rogers.

In March 1777, he is said to have married Geertruy Groesbeck. By 1793, seven children had been christened in Albany.

By March 1779, he was an Albany property holder as the city assessment roll valued his house and personal property and also a separate lot both in the third ward.

In November 1780, he was identified as an Albany city cooper and as a bailsman for Niskayuna farmer David Van Dyck by the Commissioners. In June 1781, he was one of the witnesses against Edward Mc Gurkey.

In October 1781, Anthony Groesbeck released an undivided one-fifth of a pasture in Rensselaerswyck to Eli Arnold, a cooper. In April 1785 Arnold, a "shopkeeper," released a lot in Albany to Groesbeck.

In December 1785, his account for one pound sixteen shillings was paid from the city treasury.

In 1790, his household was configured on the census in the first ward. In October 1791, he was identified as a fireman in Albany's "Division #5." After that, his name has not been enountered in the community-based record. With so many unanswered questions, we move on for now!

We seek information on the later life and passing of Eli Arnold. This one-time Albany resident has been confused with a same-named individual who went from Massachusetts to western New York (1772-1857 - with a stop in Albany in between)

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Eli Arnold is CAP biography number 7161. This sketch (or array of references) has been derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.

first posted: 10/10/11