century association biographical archive

Earliest Members of the Century Association

View all members

Abraham Lansing


Centurion, 1891–1899

Born 27 February 1835 in Albany, New York

Died 4 October 1899 in Albany, New York

Buried Albany Rural Cemetery, Menands, New York

Proposed by John Bogart, Edward L. Henry, Henry D. Sedgwick, and Joseph H. Choate

Elected 3 October 1891 at age fifty-six

Century Memorial

Abraham Lansing was one of the most prominent and honored citizens of Albany, who filled many offices of public trust, and was several times entrusted with them through the support of his political opponents, such was the confidence in his character and high sense of justice.

He was a graduate of Williams College in the class of 1855, and of the Albany Law School, and was admitted to the bar in 1857.

He was city attorney of Albany in 1868, and the first official Reporter of the Supreme Court under authority of law, and published the first seven volumes of what are known as Supreme Court Reports, which bear his name.

Although he was always a Democrat, he was appointed in 1874 acting State treasurer by Governor Dix. In 1876 he received the appointment of Corporation Counsel of Albany, and in 1882 was elected upon the Democratic ticket to represent Albany County in the State Senate by a larger majority than any candidate had hitherto received.

His service there was invaluable, for he supported and was mainly efficient in securing the passage of many important measures, such as the State Railroad Commission, the new Albany charter, in the remodeling of the Scientific Department of the State, and the reservation and establishment of the State Park at Niagara Falls. His worth was recognized beyond the limits of his profession, and he was called to fill many places of responsibility in business and social organizations. He was senior director of the Commercial Bank, a trustee of the Albany Savings Bank, the Albany Academy, the Medical College, the Rural Cemetery, the Dudley Observatory, a governor of the Albany Hospital, a member of the Board of Park Commissioners, and a foundation member of the Fort Orange Club. Such a list attests the high estimation of his integrity and capacity and appreciation of his work entertained by the public.

During his practice of over forty years he was recognized as an admirable lawyer, sound, judicious, untiring and devoted to the interests of his clients. He had a most agreeable personality, tall, dignified, with easy and gracious manners, which, even without an acquaintance with him, prejudiced every one in his favor; was cultivated in letters, and has left behind the reputation of a high-minded public servant, a good citizen and an honorable gentleman.

Henry E. Howland
1901 Century Association Yearbook