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Ruggles, Samuel Bulkleylocked

(11 April 1800–28 August 1881)
  • James Folts


Ruggles, Samuel Bulkley (11 April 1800–28 August 1881), lawyer, land developer, and economist, was born in New Milford, Connecticut, the son of Philo Ruggles, a lawyer, and Ellen Bulkley. The family moved to Poughkeepsie, New York, around 1804. Samuel was educated at the Poughkeepsie Academy and Yale College, graduating with the class of 1814. He studied law in his father’s office and was admitted to the bar in 1821, setting up practice in New York City. There in 1822 he married Mary R. Rathbone, daughter of a prominent merchant; decades later her inheritance from her father helped the Ruggles family through difficult financial times. Samuel and Mary Ruggles had two sons and one daughter; after 1839 they lived in a house he had built on fashionable Union Square. Ruggles made many friends among New York’s “Knickerbocker” patricians and the leaders of the Whig party of New York City and state. Like most of their social circle, the Ruggleses were devout Episcopalians....

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