William Cooper (judge)

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William Cooper

William Cooper (December 2, 1754December 22, 1809) was an American merchant, land speculator and developer, the founder of Cooperstown, New York. A politician, he was appointed as a county judge and later served two terms in the United States Congress, representing Otsego County and central New York. He was the father of James Fenimore Cooper, who became a noted writer of historical novels related to the New York frontier.


  • To have a great capital is not so necessary as to know how to manage a small one, and never to be without a little.
    • A Guide in the Wilderness (Dublin: Gilbert & Hodges, 1810), p. 38.

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