Daniel Hale
Stefan Bielinski

Daniel Hale probably was born during the 1740s. He first appeared on the late colonial period Albany County landscape as a storekeeper and sometime surveyor along the North Hudson. As several same-named individuals are at risk, we are cautious in approaching his origins.

By the outbreak of the Revolutionary war, he had associated himself with General Philip Schuyler and went on to serve the American army in the supply department. He was called "Major" - although record of his commission has been elusive! In 1782, he was identified as the manager of a distillery in Poughkeepsie. However, by war's end, he had settled in Albany.

About 1783, he married a young Cathalina Dyckman. The marriage produced several children but was anything but a happy one. Sickly and suffering from emotional problems, Caty Hale became a drug-dependant invalid who finally retreated to the care of her family in New York and Westchester. Although her children were baptized at the Dutch church, his preference was for St. Peter's Episcopal church - where he was a church officer.

His first notable Albany home was on Market Street - probably in or adjacent to the large building he shared with his partner, John Robison. He owned other Albany real estate parcels as well including the North End flats that later housed his distillery.

Postwar Albany newspapers identified "Major Hale" as a merchant in partnership with John Robison. They advertized European and East Indian imported goods at their store on the northwest corner of Market and State Streets. But, his water-level holdings were damaged in the great fires of the 1790s. Although he seems to have maintained his store at 5 Market Street, by 1800, he had relocated his residence to 70 North Pearl Street where he lived with his servants until his death.

During the 1790s, Hale enjoyed the patronage of Alexander Hamilton and was a substantial supplier of the US government and particular the Army.

Daniel Hale was a prominent participant in Albany's emergence as one of the first directors of the Bank of Albany, the Albany Water Works, the Library, and other community-based organizations.

Businessman and entrepreneur, Hale was a notable Albany Federalist.

He also was appointed to a number of New York State commissions and offices. In 1798, he was named Secretary of State for New York State.

He served a term in the State Assembly in 1806-07.

Daniel Hale died in Albany in September 1821. Living with her downstate family for many years prior to Hale's passing, his erstwhile wife survived until 1829.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Daniel Hale is CAP biography number 8303. We seek defining information on his origins. This sketch is derived chiefly from community-based resources. Internet-based resources: Wikipedia; Interpretive account of his marriage.

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first posted: 12/20/04; updated 1/14/12