Timothy Childs

Death record, Timothy Childs, Jr.
Obituary for Timothy Childs, Jr. Oneida (N.Y.) Morning Herald, December 8, 1847

Timothy Childs (January 1, 1790 – November 8, 1847) was a U.S. Representative from New York.


Timothy Childs, Jr. was born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts on January 1, 1790.[1] He graduated from Williams College in 1811[2] and Litchfield Law School in 1814.[3] He completed his studies at the Albany firm of Harmanus Bleecker,[4] afterwards practicing law in New York, first in Canandaigua, and then in Rochester.[5]

Originally a Federalist,[6] while residing in Canandaigua, Childs served in offices including Ontario County Commissioner and the judicial position of Master in Chancery.[7]

In 1817 he married Catherine Adams.[8][9]

He served as Monroe County, New York District Attorney from 1821 to 1831, the first to hold this position.[10][11] He served as a member of the New York State Assembly in 1828,[12] and in the late 1820s he also served as Monroe County Judge.[13][14][15]

Childs was elected as an Anti-Mason to the Twenty-first Congress (March 4, 1829 – March 3, 1831).[16][17] After his term expired he returned to practicing law in Rochester.

In December, 1830 he married Louisa S. Dickinson of North Carolina in a ceremony in Norfolk, Virginia.[18][19] Louisa Stewart Shepherd was the widow of Joel Dickinson.[20]

In 1833 he was elected again to the New York State Assembly.[21]

In 1834 he was elected as an Anti-Jacksonian to the Twenty-fourth Congress.[22] He was reelected as a Whig in 1836,[23] and served from March 4, 1835 to March 3, 1839. During his 1837 to 1839 term Childs was appointed Chairman of the Committee on Expenditures in the Post Office Department.[24]

Childs was elected to Congress again as a Whig in 1840 and served one term, March 4, 1841 to March 3, 1843.[25]

He resumed practicing law following the completion of his final term in Congress. In the late 1840s Childs traveled to Saint Croix, where he went in an effort to improve his health.[26][27] He died aboard the ship Emily on November 25, 1847 while en route from Saint Croix to the United States.[28][29][30][31][32][33][34] Childs was buried in Pittsfield Cemetery in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.[35]


  1. Massachusetts Town and Vital Records, 1620-1988, birth entry for Timothy Childs, retrieved via Ancestry.com, October 4, 2013
  2. William Thomas Davis, Bench and Bar of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Volume 2, 1895, page 291
  3. Marian C. McKenna, Tapping Reeve and the Litchfield Law School, 1986, page 189
  4. "From Saint Croix" (PDF). Oneida (N.Y.) Morning Herald. December 8, 1847.
  5. Blake McKelvey, Rochester on the Genessee: The Growth of a City, 1993, page 21
  6. Rochester Historical Society, Publications, Volume 21, 1943, page 63
  7. Index to the Newspapers Published in Geneva, New York, Volume 1, 1981, page 19
  8. Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva Newspaper Index, entry Childs, Timothy, April 9, 1817, retrieved October 4, 2013
  9. Some Finger Lakes NY Genealogy, Transcript of Marriages for 1817, retrieved October 4, 2013
  10. William Farley Peck, Semi-Centennial History of the City of Rochester, 1884, page 369
  11. William Farley Peck, History of Rochester and Monroe County, New York, Volume 1, 1908, page 358
  12. W. H. McIntosh, History of Monroe County, New York, 1877, page 39
  13. Rochester Daily Advertiser and Telegram, Legal Notices, April, 1829
  14. Batavia Republican Advocate, Legal Notices, April, 1829
  15. National Youth Administration, Index to Newspapers Published in Rochester, New York, 1818-1897, digitized 2006, page 271
  16. E. and G. W. Blunt, The American Annual Register for the Year 1829-30, 1832, page 473
  17. Sherry Penney, Patrician in Politics: Daniel Dewey Barnard of New York, 1974, page 17
  18. George Hobart Tucker, Abstracts from Norfolk City Marriage Bonds 1797-1850, 1934, page 122
  19. Norfolk County, Virginia Genealogy Trails, Miscellaneous Marriages, published in the National Intelligencer, January 1, 1831
  20. Charles Poytnz Stewart, Historic Memorials of the Stewarts of Forthergill, Perthshire, and their Male Descendants, 1879, page 148
  21. Edwin Williams, editor, Williams's New York Annual Register, 1833, page 278
  22. Niles' Weekly Register, Elections, Volume 47, November 15, 1834, page 166
  23. Niles' Weekly Register, Elections, Volume 51, December 10, 1836, page 177
  24. Perry M. Goldman, James S. Young, editors, The United States Congressional Directories, 1789-1840, 1973, page 337
  25. Niles' Weekly Register, Elections, Volume 59, November 21, 1840, page 170
  26. Judy J. Stebbins, Painesville Telegram microfilm transcript, Dec. 8, 1847 Wed., May 8, 2012, pages 203 (two entries)
  27. Watertown Chronicle, Death notice, Hon. Timothy Childs, December 22, 1847
  28. Oneida Morning Herald, From Saint Croix, December 8, 1847
  29. Chapin Family Association, The Chapin Book of Genealogical Data: With Brief Biographical Sketches of the Descendants of Deacon Samuel Chapin, Volume 1, 1924, page 179
  30. Massachusetts Town and Vital Records, 1620-1988, death entry for Timothy Childs, Esq., 1848, retrieved via Ancestry.com, October 4, 2013
  31. Geneva Courier, A Telegraphic Despatch, December 8, 1847
  32. Batavia Republican Advocate, Legal Notices, April, 1829
  33. National Youth Administration, Index to Newspapers Published in Rochester, New York, 1818-1897, digitized 2006, page 274
  34. Note: Some sources indicate that Childs died in Santa Cruz, New Mexico. This seems unlikely, given the newspaper references to his travel to the West Indies and his death aboard ship. Vera Cruz, Mexico is also unlikely, given that the Mexican-American War was happening at the time of Childs's death, meaning he wouldn't have gone there to restore his health.
  35. Timothy Childs at Find a Grave
United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Daniel D. Barnard
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 27th congressional district

Succeeded by
Frederick Whittlesey
Preceded by
Frederick Whittlesey
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 28th congressional district

Succeeded by
Thomas Kempshall
Preceded by
Thomas Kempshall
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 28th congressional district

Succeeded by
Thomas J. Paterson

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website http://bioguide.congress.gov.

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