William Livingston: Revolutionary War Governor of New Jersey Page: 4
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only."^ The members of the triumvirate had a number of
things in common: their lav; training under William Smith
senior, their Presbyterian religion, their Republican
principles, and their opposition to bishops and kings. One
of their critics said that they aimed "to pull down Church
and State, and to raise their own Government and religion
upon its ruins, or to throw the whole realm into anarchy and
The members of the trio were also landholders or
proprietors by avocation. Thus, much of the earnings from
their law practice was invested in land, mostly in upstate
New York. Both marriage and blood ties connected them to
the manorial, families of New York, and their professional
talents were often devoted to land suits concerning those
families. The Dutchess County riots of 1766 provide an
example. The riots resulted in the arrest, trial, and
conviction of the "levellers," who wanted to distribute
property more evenly. Scott and Smith personally prose-
cuted William Prendergrast, the leveller leader, and sixty
or seventy of the levellers. Although Livingston was not
directly connected with the proceedings, he sympathized
with his relatives and friends who wanted to protect their
vested interests. These opponents of British rule were
5Ibid., p. 7.
6 Ibid., p. 5.
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Lusher, Jerry Ronald. William Livingston: Revolutionary War Governor of New Jersey, thesis, December 1970; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131333/m1/11/: accessed February 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .