Clement Clarke Moore (1779-1863)
Clement C. Moore, of "Chelsea House" Manhattan, New York
He is best remembered as the author of the now famous poem, "Twas the Night Before Christmas/A Visit from St. Nicholas," though his claim is still disputed by scholars who believe it was in fact penned by Harry Livingston. According to popular family legend among his distant cousins, the Constables, he first conceived of the idea at Constable Hall which still stands in upstate New York. Moore was a Professor of Greek and Hebrew at Columbia, but to his detriment he was also a vociferous opponent of the liberation of slaves in New York. It was his friendship with Lorenzo Da Ponte that resurrected the great man's career and led him to introduce Italian Opera to America in 1833. The house which Moore enlarged to become a mansion, Chelsea, had been acquired by his grandfather in 1750. From 1819, he developed the estate into what is now recognized as Chelsea Village, one of Manhattan's most desirable neighborhoods. Moore married Catherine, daughter of the Chief Justice of Jamaica in 1813 and they had eight children.
Contributed by Mark Meredith on 02/04/2019 and last updated on 27/10/2021.
Image Courtesy of the Frick Art Reference Library