- Robert E. Wright
Ludlow, Daniel (02 August 1750–26 September 1814), merchant and banker, was born in New York City, the son of Gabriel Ludlow, a merchant, and Elizabeth Crommelin. In 1765 Ludlow’s father sent him to Amsterdam, Holland, to enter the counting house of Crommelin and Zoon, where his grandfather Charles Crommelin was a principal. During his five year stint with the firm, young Ludlow learned banking, French, German, and of course Dutch. After returning to New York around 1770, Ludlow joined his father’s mercantile business, which he took over after the latter’s death in 1773. In October of that same year Ludlow married Arabella Duncan. The couple had five children before Arabella’s death in 1803. Ludlow, a Loyalist during the Revolution, joined the Chamber of Commerce in 1783. Shortly thereafter, on 1 January 1784, he entered into a partnership with Edward Goold. Their first advertisement, a circular letter, was rather vague about their line of business, promising “to contribute to the Success of whatever Concerns may be entrusted to our Charge.” They probably imported goods on commission and on their own account. Manuscript evidence suggests that they were also involved in marine insurance. The partnership dissolved in 1790, when Ludlow joined with his nephew Gulian Ludlow under the name Daniel Ludlow & Company. This firm, a major importer of East India goods and a marine insurer, stayed together for fifteen years. The firm experienced significant underwriting losses during the 1798 Quasi-War with France, but soon recovered with aid from Ludlow’s new banking concern....