Scope and arrangement
Papers of the Van Cortlandt and Van Wyck families consist of correspondence, accounts, legal documents, papers relating to land in Westchester County and New York City owned by the Van Cortlandt family, estate papers, and wills.
Correspondence, 1779-1912, concerns family, personal, and real estate matters, the progress of the Revolutionary War, and political matters. Much of the earlier letters are addressed to Pierre Van Cortlandt (1721-1814) and there is a significant amount of correspondence between Pierre and his son Philip (1749-1831). There are letters among other members of the Van Cortlandt family, as well as from members of the Beekman, Clinton (including DeWitt Clinton and George Clinton), Livingston, Van Rensselaer, Van Wyck, and other neighboring or related families.
Some additional items include: an 1824 New York almanac containing some journal notes; a manuscript of Philip Van Cortlandt's autobiography; a sketch by Philip Van Cortlandt of the seating arrangement in Congress Hall, Philadelphia, 1795; the Columbia College diploma, 1807, of Philip G. Van Wyck; and a group of documents, 1775-1813, of or concerning the Continental Army, many of which contain the name of Philip Van Cortlandt, who was a colonel.