Janet Livingston Montgomery - Founding Mother

Janet Livingston Montgomery

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Founding Mother

During the American Revolution, Janet’s husband, General Richard Montgomery, led Patriot forces in the Battle of Quebec.

He was killed in that battle on December 31, 1775, leaving Janet a childless widow. A grateful young country recognized Janet Montgomery as a nation’s widow, much as Americans honored Jacqueline Kennedy and Coretta Scott King two centuries later.       

Interest in the Revolution and its significant sites ran high in the 19th century, and Janet’s stature as a “founding mother” only increased as the years passed. Soon after she constructed her new estate in memory of Richard Montgomery, travelers along the Hudson River appreciated it as an emblem of personal loss suffered for a nation’s liberty.

Death of Montgomery in the Attack on Quebec, December 31, 1775, John Trumbull. Oil on canvas, 1786. Yale University Art Gallery, Trumbull Collection.

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