Edmund Andros


Public life

Occupation 1

English governor of New York


NA/Mid-Atlantic region


Anglo-American Atlantic World (1641-1750)








Andros arrived in New York on 22 October 1674, with his wife, their household, a staff of thirteen officers plus supernumeraries, a group of English merchants, and a hundred soldiers. The duke of York's proprietary government included Maine, the offshore islands, Connecticut west of the river, Long Island, Manhattan, Staten Island, the Hudson valley to Albany, the Jersies (the land was held by proprietors), and the Delaware settlements. To all of these areas, Andros introduced English law and government.

Andros remodeled New York City politically, largely with the aid of Dutch collaborators; he also transformed it physically. He ordered the construction of new docks, warehouses, customs offices, a mercantile exchange, public privies, slaughterhouses, and a new city wall. Within the wall (now Wall Street) he filled in the stagnant canals of the Dutch era, making New York's first paved streets. He had new mills built. Then he regulated the wheat trade with the West Indies, the foundation of New York's new prosperity. He reordered New York's staple, the fur trade, which depended on the good will of the Iroquois.

On 30 July 1685 [Andros] was commissioned governor-general of the new Dominion of New England. The consolidation of the colonies, first of Plymouth, Massachusetts Bay, New Hampshire, and Maine, to which were added Connecticut, Rhode Island, and all of greater "New York," was largely the result of Andros's recommendations for a consolidated colonial defense, regional economic rationalization, and administrative uniformity.

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Record ID: 289