Barbara Gray Schuyler


According to traditional sources, Barbara Gray is said to have been born about 1745 and would have been the daughter of John Gray of Cork, Ireland.

In August 1767, she married thirty-two-year-old Cortlandt Schuyler, an Albany native and, at that time, a British army officer on garrison duty in Ireland. Several (but perhaps only two) of their children were born in Ireland while the last two were christened at St. Peters in Albany where these Schuylers were prominent members. The last two of their four children were christened in Albany in 1767 and 1769.

Cortland Schuyler returned to America where he leased a large tract located south of the city. There, the retired officer and his Irish-born wife sought to built a grand country seat where they would raise their growing family. The farm was located south of the Normanskill but was not shown on the map of the manor made in 1767.

However, that ambition and life were cut short in October 1773 when her husband was thrown from his horse while hunting on his property and died.

During the early summer of 1774, she was visited by a group of prominent New Yorkers en route to Albany on a sloop. At that time her new home was not quite finished but Abraham Lott noted that its riverside location was "very pleasent."

According to family-based resources, widow Barbara and her children returned to Ireland in 1777. In 1784, her eldest son, John Courtland Schuyler, was sent back to America to manage his father's New York estate. The will he filed in 1793 named his mother as executrix and heir. However, she had died by the time the will was probated in 1797.

Barbara Gray Schuyler is said to have died in New York in 1794.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Barbara Gray Schuyler has not been assigned a CAP biography number. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. Some family information is taken from notes in the Van Vechten Family collection at the New York State Library.

posted 6/15/12; last revised 8/29/12