Back to Results

IRVINE, William



IRVINE, William, a Delegate and a Representative from Pennsylvania; born in County Fermanagh, Ulster, Ireland, on November 3, 1741; pursued classical studies and was graduated from the Dublin University; studied medicine and was admitted to practice; served as surgeon on a British man-of-war; immigrated to the United States and settled in Carlisle, Pa., in 1763; delegate to the State Revolutionary conventions 1764-1766; colonel of the Sixth Pennsylvania Regiment in the Revolutionary Army; captured in Canada June 16, 1776, and remained a prisoner of war until exchanged May 6, 1778; appointed brigadier general May 12, 1779, and served until the close of the war; Member of the Continental Congress 1787-1788; commanded the State troops during the Whisky Rebellion in 1794; elected as an Anti-Administration candidate to the Third Congress (March 4, 1793-March 3, 1795); moved to Philadelphia, where he was superintendent of military stores 1801-1804; died in Philadelphia, Pa., July 29, 1804; interment in Gloria Dei (Old Swedes) Church Burial Ground, Philadelphia, Pa.

View Record in the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

[ Top ]

External Research Collections

Historical Society of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA
Papers: 1768-1834, 4 linear feet. The papers of William Irvine mainly relate to his service as a brigadier general in the Revolutionary Army. Included are letters, muster rolls, records of courts martial, petitions, orders, and resolutions of Congress, 1768-1834; letters, 1780-1811, of John Rose (Baron Rosenthal), William Irvine's adjutant; a letter book, 1781-1782; William Irvine's order book while commanding the Western Department, 1781-1783; a receipt book, 1776-1777; and an account and cashbook, 1783.
Papers: In the Irvine Family Papers, ca. 1777-1869, approximately 1000 items.. The papers include correspondence and other papers of General William Irvine and his son Callander Irvine. General Irvine's papers, 1778-1804, concern his command of Fort Pitt, his services as Commissioner of Accounts, 1793, and as Superintendent of Military Stores, 1801-1804. There is also correspondence between William Irvine and David Grier, regarding military supplies and recruitment.
Papers: In the Irvine-Newbold Family Papers, 1776-1956, 13 linear feet. The first generation is represented by the papers, of William Irvine, including incoming and some outgoing correspondence, 1783-1804, dealing with family matters and land speculation; land papers; an account book, 1776-1781, of his military expenses; a record book, 1781-1782, of clothing disbursed by William Irvine at Fort Pitt; miscellaneous account books, 1793-1796, 1802-1808; and an orderly book, 1778-1779, and roll book, 1776-1777, of a British unit, the 1st Battalion of Guards.

Cornell University
Carl A. Kroch Library

Ithaca, NY
Papers: In Washington Irving's "Life of George Washington," Volume IX, Miscellany, 1766-1808, 73 items. Correspondents include William Irvine.

The Filson Historical Society
Special Collections Department

Louisville, KY
Papers: 1788, 1 item. A letter from William Irvine written to an unidentified recipient on March 17, 1788. In the letter, William Irvine requesting an opinion on the application of Kentucky for admission to the Union.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: In the Miscellaneous Manuscripts Collection, 1780, 1 item. A letter from William Irvine to Joseph Reed written on April 25, 1780. In the letter, William Irvine writes concerning the delay in appointment of officers in the Continental Army. William Irvine also mentions a review of four battalions by Anne-César, chevalier de La Luzerne, French minister to the United States.
Papers: 1776-1834. 1 reel of microfilm. Microfilm of transcripts in Draper Manuscripts, State Historical Society of Wisconsin.
Papers: In the United States War Department Records, 1790-1840, 500 items. The papers include letter books kept by William Irvine and his son, Callendar Irvine, as superintendents of military stores at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from 1795 to 1813.

The Morgan Library
Department of Literary and Historical Manuscripts

New York, NY
Papers: 1781, 1 item. A letter from William Irvine to Joseph Reed written on December 8, 1781. In the letter, William Irvine writes concerning the artillery and mentioning Baron Steuben.

The Rosenbach Museum & Library

Philadelphia, PA
Papers: 1800, 1 item. A letter from William Irvine to Alexander James Dallas written on October 12, 1800. In the letter, William Irvine discusses business, the chances for Thomas Jefferson's success in the upcoming elections, and local and state politics.
Papers: 1801, 1 item. A letter from William Irvine to Alexander James Dallas written on January 19, 1801. In the letter, William Irvine discusses the upcoming Presidential election between Aaron Burr and Thomas Jefferson, and the uncertain outcome.

University of Chicago
Butler-Gunsaulus Collection

Chicago, IL
Papers: 1802, 1 item. A letter from William Irvine to Joseph Clay written on April 15, 1802. In the letter, William Irvine writes that he has received invoices and bundles of furs.

University of Pennsylvania
Special Collections, Van Pelt Library

Philadelphia, PA
Papers: 1907, 6 items. The papers include correspondence between William Irvine and Henry Lea.
Papers: In the Miscellaneous Manuscripts Collection, 1791-1798, 2 items. Consists of a letter dated October 4, 1791, from Edward Tilghman to General William Irvine, and a document dated February 13, 1798, concerning the conveyance of property.

Wisconsin Historical Society
Archives Division

Madison, WI
Papers: ca. 1790-1794, 0.1 cubic foot. Two letters from William Irvine written in 1790 and 1794. The letter written in 1790 concerns Pennsylvania state finances. The other letter, written on June 4, 1794 is to Thomas Mifflin.
Papers: In the Draper Manuscripts: Daniel Brodhead Papers, 1775-1846, 0.4 cubic foot. Correspondents include William Irvine.
Papers: In the Draper Manuscripts: Pittsburgh and Northwest Virginia Papers, 1768-1854, 2 cubic feet. Correspondents include William Irvine.
Papers: In the Draper Manuscripts: William Irvine Papers, 1776-1834, 0.4 cubic foot. The papers contain copies of correspondence of William Irvine, Commander of the Seventh Pennsylvania Regiment, who later (1779) became a brigadier general in the Continental Army, including materials from his command at Fort Pitt (1781-1783). Border defense and William Irvine's military career are the most prominent topics, but personal letters written to his wife discuss family health, business affairs, servants, and the children's education.
[ Top ]

Bibliography / Further Reading

Butterfield, Consul Willshire, ed. Washington-Irvine Correspondence. The Official Letters Which Passed Between Washington and Brig.-Gen. William Irvine and Between Irvine and Others Concerning Military Affairs in the West from 1781 to 1783. Madison, Wis.: D. Atwood, 1882.

[ Top ]