Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757

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Jonathan Belcher was born on January 8, in 1681 or 1682, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the son of Andrew and Sarah Belcher. In 1746, upon hearing about Governor of New Jersey Lewis Morris's poor health, Belcher actively pursued the opportunity for another royal appointment. Although the Morris Family nominated the former governor's son, Robert Hunter Morris, the alliance of Quakers in New Jersey and London cultivated by Belcher and his brother-in-law, Richard Partridge, managed to obtain the appointment for Belcher, rather than Morris. Governor Belcher arrived in Burlington, New Jersey, the capital of the colony, in 1747. He soon found himself embroiled in a feud between two factions in the New Jersey legislature, the Quakers and Congregationalists on one side, and the supporters of the Morris Family on the other. Morris Family supporters in London embarked on a campaign to unseat Belcher, claiming that he was consorting with and openly supporting the rioters. London believed the charges leveled against Belcher, and was reprimanded for his alleged improprieties. Severely weakened politically by the reprimand, Belcher achieved little else while in office, in which he remained until his death in 1757.

From the description of Jonathan Belcher papers, 1738-[ca. 1900]. (New Jersey Historical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 53086276

Belcher, a Harvard graduate (1699), was the royal governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony (1730-1741) and of New Jersery (1747-1757). He was one of the founders of the College of New Jersey (later called Princeton University).

From the description of [Letter] 1731 Aug. 31, Boston, [Mass., to] Mr. Fairfax / J. Belcher. (Smith College). WorldCat record id: 162136336

Governor of Massachusetts.

From the description of Agreement, 1741. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70958496

Governor of Massachusetts (1730-1741) and New Jersey (1747-1757).

From the description of Jonathan Belcher letters, 1736-1737. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 713870988

Merchant, colonial official; governor of Massachusetts and New Hampshire, 1730-1741; of New Jersey, 1747-1757.

From the description of ALS : Boston, to Henry Sherburne, 1731 Dec. 13. (Rosenbach Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 122490204

Governor of Massachusetts and New Jersey and educator.

From the description of Letterbooks of Jonathan Belcher, 1723-1754. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 82846066

From the description of Covers of Jonathan Belcher, undated. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 79451570

Jonathan Belcher, a merchant and colonial governor, was the son of a cloth maker from London, who came to Cambridge, Mass., in the mid 17th century. He graduated from Harvard in 1699, traveled extensively in Europe, came back to Boston where he established himself as a merchant and made a great fortune. His political career began when he was elected to the Massachusetts council in 1718. In 1729 Belcher was in London on an official visit when he got news of the death of Gov. William Burnet of Massachussetts, and was able to secure the position for himself. His commission was dated 1729/30 and he became governor of Masachussetts and New Hampshire, and was re-elected for several terms. Certain factors led to his downfall, one of which was his conflicts with the British royal authorities, and on May 7, 1741, he was dismissed from both governorships. A few years later he went back to England, and in July 1746 he was appointed governor of New Jersey. He was very interested in establishing the College of New Jersey (now Princeton), and on his death bequeathed his library of 374 volumes to it. There was a proposal to name the present Nassau Hall "Belcher Hall," but he declined the honor and suggested the name now in use.

From the description of Jonathan Belcher collection, 1708-1950. (Peking University Library). WorldCat record id: 61668652

American merchant and colonial governor of Massachusetts and New Hampshire 1729/30-1741 and of New Jersey 1747-1757

From the guide to the Jonathan Belcher letters and document, 1734, 1742, 1752, (The New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division.)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Jonathan Belcher collection, 1708-1950. Princeton University Library
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Jonathan Belcher letters, 1736-1737. Brooks Memorial Library
creatorOf Massachusetts. Governor (1730-1741 : Belcher). Massachusetts-New Hampshire boundary dispute records,, 1740. Newberry Library
referencedIn Waldron, Richard, 1694-1753. Papers, 1703-1782. New Hampshire Historical Society Library
referencedIn Remington, Jonathan, 1677-1745. Diaries, 1730-1733. American Antiquarian Society
creatorOf Forbes, John, 1707-1759. Papers of John Forbes [manuscript], 1755-1759. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Waldo, Samuel, 1695-1759. Letters : Boston, [Mass.], to John Thomlinson, London, [Eng.], 1738-1742. Newberry Library
creatorOf Dracut (Mass.). Proprietors. [Petition, 1701 February 25], to the honorable council and Representatives of His Majesty's Province of Massachusetts Bay in New England in General Court assembled. New England Historic Genealogical Society, NEHGS
creatorOf Saunders, Thomas, Capt. Papers, 1732-1828, bulk: 1732-1787. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Amory Family Papers, 1697-1882 Manuscript Division, Library of Congress
referencedIn Waldron, Richard, 1694-1753. Richard Waldron correspondence and notes, 1725-1749. Library of Congress
referencedIn Pollard, Benjamin, 1696-1756. Letters : Boston, [Mass.], to John Thomlinson, London, [Eng.], 1738 Aug. 25-Dec. 20. Newberry Library
creatorOf Compton, Spencer, Earl of Wilmington, 1673?-1743. 2 ALsS : to Lord Wilmington, 1732 Feb. 26, 1733 Oct. 8. Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square
referencedIn Atkinson, Theodore, 1697-1779. Letters, 1738-1740. Newberry Library
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Letterbooks of Jonathan Belcher, 1723-1754. Library of Congress
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Jonathan Belcher papers, 1738-[ca. 1900]. New Jersey Historical Society Library
referencedIn Autograph File, B, ca.1500-1976. Houghton Library, , Harvard College Library, Harvard University
referencedIn New England papers, 1648-1773 [manuscript]. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
referencedIn Dogget family. Dogget family papers, 1648-1839. Maine Historical Society Library
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Stoddard et al vs. Belcher, 1741 Dec. 23. Wintrop Public Library & Museum
referencedIn Walters, Thomas. Bill of lading, 1718 July. New England Historic Genealogical Society, NEHGS
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. [Letter] 1731 Aug. 31, Boston, [Mass., to] Mr. Fairfax / J. Belcher. Smith College, Neilson Library
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Belcher-Jennison-Weiss Papers, 1722-1905. Massachusetts Historical Society
creatorOf Jonathan Belcher letters and document, 1734, 1742, 1752 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn Houghton Library printed book provenance file, A-D. Houghton Library, , Harvard College Library, Harvard University
referencedIn Waldron, Richard, 1694-1753. Papers of Richard Waldron, 1726-1770. Library of Congress
creatorOf Dennis family. Papers, 1663-1904. Library of Congress
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Covers of Jonathan Belcher, undated. Library of Congress
referencedIn Thomas Addis Emmet collection, 1483-1876, 1700-1800 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn Amory, Thomas, 1682-1728. Amory family papers, 1697-1882. Library of Congress
creatorOf Davis, John, 1761-1847. Papers, 1627-1846. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Jared Sparks collection of documents concerning the American Revolution, 1740-1866 . Houghton Library, , Harvard College Library, Harvard University
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Jonathan Belcher letterbooks, 1723-1755. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Belcher, Andrew. Property record, 1776. Boston Athenaeum
creatorOf Colman, Benjamin, 1673-1747. Benjamin Colman papers, 1641-1806. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Adventure (Sloop : 1716). Manifest, 1716. Wintrop Public Library & Museum
referencedIn Paris, Ferdinand John. Papers, 1686-1838. New Jersey Historical Society Library
referencedIn Massachusetts. Governor (1730-1741 : Belcher). New Hampshire documents in the British Archives, 1620-1775. New Hampshire Historical Society Library
creatorOf New Hampshire. Governor (1730-1741: Belcher). Judicial commission, 1731 May 4. Dartmouth College Library
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. ALS : Boston, to Henry Sherburne, 1731 Dec. 13. Rosenbach Museum & Library
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. [Correspondence to Samuel Sewall, 1696, 1704, 1708-1709, 1722]. New England Historic Genealogical Society, NEHGS
referencedIn Frederick M. Dearborn collection of military and political Americana, Part I: The Revolution and the Administration, 1669-1958. Houghton Library, , Harvard College Library, Harvard University
creatorOf William L. Clements Library. George Clinton papers, 1697-1760, bulk 1745-1753. University of Michigan, William Clements Library
referencedIn Armour, Alexander William. Alexander William Armour autograph collection, 1731-1938. Library of Congress
referencedIn Lyttelton, George Lyttelton, Baron, 1709-1773,. Autograph letter signed from George Lyttelton, Baron Lyttelton, London, to Dr. Doddridge [manuscript], 1750 March 27. Folger Shakespeare Library
referencedIn St. John's Church (Portsmouth, N.H.). Records, 1721-1960 (bulk 1800-1899). Portsmouth Athenaeum Library & Museum
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Journal of my intended voyage and journey to Holland, Hannover etc. : beginning at London Saturday July 8th O.S. 1704, 1704. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Stratton, Richard, fl. 1749. Bond, 1749 Nov. 14. Wintrop Public Library & Museum
referencedIn Bamberger, Louis, 1855-1944,. Autograph collection, 1683-1929. New Jersey Historical Society Library
referencedIn George Clinton papers, Clinton, George, papers, 1697-1760, 1745-1753 William L. Clements Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf Belcher, Jonathan, 1682-1757. Agreement, 1741. Wintrop Public Library & Museum
creatorOf New Hampshire. General Assembly. A journal of the House of Representatives of His Majesties province of New Hampshire in New England, began and held at Portsmouth ..., 1740 July 23-Aug. 7. Newberry Library
referencedIn Colonial New England personal legal papers. Wichita State University, Ablah Library
referencedIn Greene, Ann. Ann Greene account book, 1725-1890; bulk: 1725-1727. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Gratz, Simon. Alphabetical collection, 1677-1910. Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith Adams, Samuel, 1722-1803. person
associatedWith Adventure (Sloop : 1716) corporateBody
correspondedWith Amory Family family
associatedWith Armour, Alexander William. person
associatedWith Atkinson, Theodore, 1697-1779. person
associatedWith Auchmuty, Robert, 1687-1750. person
associatedWith Bamberger, Louis, 1855-1944, person
associatedWith Belcher, Andrew. person
associatedWith Belcher, Andrew, b. 1706. person
associatedWith Belcher, Jonathan, 1710-1776. person
associatedWith Belcher, Mary P. (Mary Partridge), 1685-1736 person
associatedWith Belcher, William, b. 1712. person
associatedWith Burr, Aaron, 1716-1757. person
correspondedWith Chauncey, Nathaniel, 1681-1756 person
associatedWith College of New Jersey (Princeton, N.J.) corporateBody
associatedWith Colman, Benjamin, 1673-1747. person
associatedWith Compton, Spencer, Earl of Wilmington, 1673?-1743. person
associatedWith Davis, John, 1761-1847. person
associatedWith Dearborn, Frederick M. (Frederick Myers), b. 1876 person
associatedWith Dennis family. family
correspondedWith Dogget family. family
associatedWith Dracut (Mass.). Proprietors. corporateBody
associatedWith Emmet, Thomas Addis person
associatedWith Fairfax, Mr., person
associatedWith Forbes, John, 1707-1759. person
associatedWith Gratz, Simon. person
associatedWith Greene, Ann. person
associatedWith Houghton Library. corporateBody
correspondedWith Kellogg, Joseph person
associatedWith Kountze, De Lancey, d. 1946, person
associatedWith Lynde, Benjamin, 1700-1781. person
associatedWith Lyttelton, George Lyttelton, Baron, 1709-1773, person
associatedWith Manufactory Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Massachusetts. Governor (1730-1741 : Belcher) corporateBody
associatedWith New Hampshire. General Assembly. corporateBody
associatedWith New Hampshire. Governor (1730-1741: Belcher) corporateBody
associatedWith New Jersey. Governor (1747-1757 : Belcher) corporateBody
associatedWith New Jersey. Legislature. General Assembly corporateBody
correspondedWith Ogden, Robert person
associatedWith Paris, Ferdinand John. person
associatedWith Partridge, Richard, 1681-1759. person
correspondedWith Pepperrell, William, Sir, 1696-1759 person
associatedWith Pollard, Benjamin, 1696-1756. person
correspondedWith Porter, Eleazar, d. 1757 person
associatedWith Remington, Jonathan, 1677-1745. person
associatedWith Saunders, Thomas, Capt. person
associatedWith Sherburne, Henry, 1674-1757, person
associatedWith Shirley, William, 1694-1771. person
associatedWith Sparks, Jared, 1789-1866 person
correspondedWith St. John's Church (Portsmouth, N.H.) corporateBody
correspondedWith Stoddard, John, 1681-1748 person
associatedWith Stratton, Richard, fl. 1749. person
associatedWith Waldo, Samuel, 1695-1759. person
correspondedWith Waldron, Richard, 1694-1753 person
correspondedWith Walley, John, b. 1725 person
associatedWith Walters, Thomas. person
correspondedWith Wells, Thomas person
associatedWith West New Jersey Society. corporateBody
associatedWith William L. Clements Library. corporateBody
associatedWith Williams, Israel, 1709-1788 person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Fort Dummer (Vt.)
New Jersey
New Jersey
Perth Amboy (N.J.)
New Jersey
Massachusetts
New Jersey
Massachusetts
Massachusetts--Boston
New Jersey
New Hampshire
Germany
Massachusetts
Burlington (N.J.)
Boston (Mass.)
Connecticut
Massachusetts
Massachusetts
Massachusetts
Massachusetts
Subject
Ocean travel
Account books
Real property
Mohawk Indians--Treaties
Banks and banking
Privateering
Governor--Correspondence
Taxation
Copper mines and mining
Voyages and travels
Occupation
Governor--Massachusetts
Educators
Governors--New Jersey
Function

Person

Birth 1682-01-08

Death 1757-08-31

Information

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