Phoebe Bayard St Clair

 Phoebe Bayard St Clair
September 14, 1743 -  September 18, 1818

“The Hermitage”, Arthur St. Clair’s Ligonier Valley estate. The property was situated about two miles north of Ligonier Borough and was described on the 1798 Direct Tax List as “1 story dwelling house 90′ by 18, wood, 14 windows, 16′ square kitchen, 1 shingled roof barn, 1 grist mill with 2 pair stones, 1 saw mill”. An iron furnace was added in the early 1800’s. The parlor is of log construction; the logs were apparently always covered by siding.  Today, the parlor is the only room remaining from the Hermitage. 
Phoebe Bayard was born in the Massachusetts colony September 14, 1743. She was the daughter of Balthasar Bayard and his wife Mary Bowdoin, was well educated, and a woman of superior accomplishments. Arthur St. Clair, son of William St. Clair, born at Thurso, Caithness, Scotland, March 23, 1736, was educated at the University of Edinburgh, graduated in medicine, but preferring the military he relinquished his scientific calling and accepted the rank of ensign in the Royal American Regiment of Foot. During his service with the British army and frequent visits to Boston, where he was sent on military business, the young ensign made the acquaintance of the Bowdoins and Bayards, and improved the opportunity of falling in love with Miss Phoebe. They were married in May, 1760, by Rev. William Hooper, rector of Trinity church, Boston.  By his marriage St. Clair received the sum of fourteen thousand pounds, being a legacy to his wife from her grandfather, James Bowdoin. This, added to his own savings, no doubt were the inducements for him to resign his commission, which he did in 1764. Having been stationed some time at Fort Ligonier, in western Pennsylvania, he was familiar with the country, and a year or two later, with his young wife, St. Clair removed to that locality, where he had acquired a large body of land chiefly by purchase and partly by grant.

It has been wondered by writers in general what could have induced a man of St. Clair's acquirements and wealth to settle on the confines of civilization and thus deprive himself and little family of the advantages of society and the comforts thereof; but charmed with that valley and the constant influx of Scotch-Irish emigrants, enjoyment of life seemingly held out brighter inducements than among Puritan surroundings. 

It is especially of the estimable lady who so sweetly adorned the early home of St. Clair in the Ligonier Valley, and through the long years of the Revolution cheered that brave officer in his devotion to the cause of his country, that we prefer to write. 

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Notwithstanding the adverse circumstances which surrounded her home at the close of the war, and her delicate health, she bore all with calm resignation. At last, however, when the hungry creditors hounded their victim to the last extremity, and her little family were turned out of house and home, the mental energies gave way, and the former highly educated and refined woman became an intellectual wreck. She ended her days in the log house which her son Daniel bought as an asylum for his aged father and mother. Here to nurse life a little longer, to keep his family together, the hero of many wars cared for his wife. On the 18th of September, 1818, only eighteen days after her husband, death claimed the beauty of 1760, Phoebe Bayard St. Clair, her remains being interred by the side of the General.   - by historian William Henry Egle




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United Colonies and States First Ladies
1774-1788


United Colonies Continental Congress
President
18th Century Term
Age
09/05/74 – 10/22/74
29
Mary Williams Middleton  (1741- 1761) Deceased
Henry Middleton
10/22–26/74
n/a
05/20/ 75 - 05/24/75
30
05/25/75 – 07/01/76
28
United States Continental Congress
President
Term
Age
07/02/76 – 10/29/77
29
Eleanor Ball Laurens  (1731- 1770) Deceased
Henry Laurens
11/01/77 – 12/09/78
n/a
Sarah Livingston Jay  (1756-1802)
12/ 10/78 – 09/28/78
21
Martha Huntington  (1738/39–1794)
09/29/79 – 02/28/81
41
United States in Congress Assembled
President
Term
Age
Martha Huntington  (1738/39–1794)
03/01/81 – 07/06/81
42
07/10/81 – 11/04/81
25
Jane Contee Hanson  (1726-1812)
11/05/81 - 11/03/82
55
11/03/82 - 11/02/83
46
Sarah Morris Mifflin  (1747-1790)
11/03/83 - 11/02/84
36
11/20/84 - 11/19/85
46
11/23/85 – 06/06/86
38
Rebecca Call Gorham  (1744-1812)
06/06/86 - 02/01/87
42
02/02/87 - 01/21/88
43
01/22/88 - 01/29/89
36


Constitution of 1787
First Ladies
President
Term
Age
April 30, 1789 – March 4, 1797
57
March 4, 1797 – March 4, 1801
52
Martha Wayles Jefferson Deceased
September 6, 1782  (Aged 33)
n/a
March 4, 1809 – March 4, 1817
40
March 4, 1817 – March 4, 1825
48
March 4, 1825 – March 4, 1829
50
December 22, 1828 (aged 61)
n/a
February 5, 1819 (aged 35)
n/a
March 4, 1841 – April 4, 1841
65
April 4, 1841 – September 10, 1842
50
June 26, 1844 – March 4, 1845
23
March 4, 1845 – March 4, 1849
41
March 4, 1849 – July 9, 1850
60
July 9, 1850 – March 4, 1853
52
March 4, 1853 – March 4, 1857
46
n/a
n/a
March 4, 1861 – April 15, 1865
42
February 22, 1862 – May 10, 1865
April 15, 1865 – March 4, 1869
54
March 4, 1869 – March 4, 1877
43
March 4, 1877 – March 4, 1881
45
March 4, 1881 – September 19, 1881
48
January 12, 1880 (Aged 43)
n/a
June 2, 1886 – March 4, 1889
21
March 4, 1889 – October 25, 1892
56
June 2, 1886 – March 4, 1889
28
March 4, 1897 – September 14, 1901
49
September 14, 1901 – March 4, 1909
40
March 4, 1909 – March 4, 1913
47
March 4, 1913 – August 6, 1914
52
December 18, 1915 – March 4, 1921
43
March 4, 1921 – August 2, 1923
60
August 2, 1923 – March 4, 1929
44
March 4, 1929 – March 4, 1933
54
March 4, 1933 – April 12, 1945
48
April 12, 1945 – January 20, 1953
60
January 20, 1953 – January 20, 1961
56
January 20, 1961 – November 22, 1963
31
November 22, 1963 – January 20, 1969
50
January 20, 1969 – August 9, 1974
56
August 9, 1974 – January 20, 1977
56
January 20, 1977 – January 20, 1981
49
January 20, 1981 – January 20, 1989
59
January 20, 1989 – January 20, 1993
63
January 20, 1993 – January 20, 2001
45
January 20, 2001 – January 20, 2009
54
January 20, 2009 to date
45

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