James Kirke Paulding

James Kirke Paulding

Male 1778 - 1860  (81 years)    Has 18 ancestors but no descendants in this family tree.

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  • Name James Kirke Paulding 
    Relationshipwith Francis Fox
    Born 22 Aug 1778  Pleasant Valley, Dutchess county Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 6 Apr 1860  Hyde Park, Duchess, NY Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, N.Y. Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I363287  Geneagraphie
    Last Modified 22 Jan 2002 

    Father NN Pawling,   b. 1740-1750,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Family ID F129936  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Gertrude Kemble,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Last Modified 14 Jan 2002 
    Family ID F143904  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

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    James Kirke Paulding
    James Kirke Paulding

  • Notes 
    • Resided in New York City. Served as secretary of the navy, 1837-41. Co-author with Irving of The Salmagundi Papers. Other works include The Diverting History of John Bull and Brother Jonathan and a second series of Salmagundi.
      Said to have written the rhyme 'Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers'.

      A descendant of Henry Pawling, an early settler of the State of New York
      On attaining his majority he became an inmate of the house of his accomplished brother-in-law, William Irving, of New York; and the literary society into which he was thus thrown tended to cultivate a natural taste for humorous satire, which soon bore fruits in the (1.) Salmagundi essays, referred to on a preceding page. See IRVING, WASHINGTON, p. 935, supra. About ten years after the publication of the last number of this popular periodical, Mr. Paulding, in 1819, published (2.) a second series of Salmagundi; but the success of the plan was not sufficient to authorize the continuation of the work. The numbers pub. form 2 vols. in the (incomplete) collective ed. of Mr. Paulding's works.
      "A new Series of Salmagundi, altogether by himself: quite equal to the first; but--such is the miserable caprice of popular opinion--altogether neglected. Only a few numbers--five or six, if we are not mistaken--were published."--JOHN NEAL: American Writers, No. V.: Blackw. Mag., Feb. 1825, 199.
      Mr. Neal, in the same article from which the above is extracted, thus speaks of Paulding's papers in the first series of Salmagundi:
      "Most are capital; but ill-tempered. No two writers could be more thoroughly opposed in every thing--disposition, habit, style--than were Irving and Paulding. The former was cheerful; pleasant, given to laughing at whatever he saw--not peevishly, satirically, or spitefully, but in real good humour: the latter--even while he laughed--as Byron says of Lara--sneered. Irving would make us love human nature--wish it well--pity it: Paulding would make us ashamed of it; or angry with it. One looks for what is good in every thing; the other for what is bad."
      A later critic, accounting for the failure of the new Salmagundi papers to elicit public attention, remarks,
      "The 'town' interest had diminished. More than ten years had elapsed; the writer was then engaged in official duties at Washington; his mind had assumed a graver cast, and the second series of Salmagundi is deficient in that buoyant spirit of vivacity which is one of the distinguishing features of the first."
      The reference to the author's "public duties" affords a convenient introduction to a brief sketch of the principal incidents of Mr. Paulding's career. About 1814 he became First Secretary to the Board of Naval Commissioners; resigned this office, after a few years' tenure, for the post of Navy Agent for the port of New York, which station he held for twelve years, (until 1837,) when he was appointed Secretary of the Navy, and remained in office until the expiration of President Van Buren's term.
      Shortly after his retirement from public life (in 1841) Mr. Paulding removed to his country-seat, situated about eight miles above the town of Poughkeepsie, in Dutchess county: the farm he occupied being part of the manor granted by King William the Third to his ancestor, Eltje Pawling, widow of Henry Pawling. He retained a lively interest in letters, and continued the habit of occasionally committing to paper his speculations on topics which engaged his attention. Of the works in the following list of his publications in book-form, almost all appeared without the name of the author; and he contributed anonymously to various periodicals enough matter to fill several more volumes.
      3. The Diverting History of John Bull and Brother Jonathan, N. York, 1813, 18mo; new ed., 1835, 12mo. See Blackw. Mag., xvii, 199; Fraser's Mag., v. 336.
      4. The Lady of the Scotch Fiddle; a Poem in Five Cantoes, supposed to be written by W--S--, [Walter Scott,] Esq. First American from the Fourth Edinburgh Edition, N. York 1813, 32mo; Lon., 1814, 12mo. Reviewed in Analec. Mag., (by Washington Irving.) Mr. Paulding's burlesque of Rokeby is entitled Jokeby, in Six Cantoes.
      5. The United States and England, 1814, pamph. See INGERSOLL, CHARLES JARED.
      6. Letters from the South, written during an Excursion in the Summer of 1816, by the Author of John Bull, &c., N. York, 1817, 2 vols. 12mo; 1835, 2 vols. 12mo.
      "A well-written book; not very malicious, nor very able; giving some account, but a very imperfect one, of the southern habits and western habits of his countrymen."--JOHN NEAL: Blackw. Mag., xvii. 199.
      7. The Backwoodsman; a Poem, Phila., 1818, 12mo. A critic in Blackw. Mag. for June, 1822, referring to Pierpont's Airs of Palestine, remarks,
      "This poem, as well as the one which follows it, 'The Back-woodsman,' by J. K. Paulding, is a very respectable (to use the words of the preface) and tasteful effusion of the Pope school. 'The Backwoodsman' is not the best, although its author, we are informed, 'has attained considerable literary celebrity in America.' . . . The relative merits of Homer and Mr. Paulding are thus elegantly and judiciously determined in a couplet of some Columbian bard:
      'Homer was well enough; but would he ever Have written, think ye, the Backwoodsman? Never!'"
      pp. 686, 687. See, also, xvii. 199.
      8. A Sketch of Old England, by a New England Man, in a Series of Letters to his Brother, N. York, 1822, 2 vols. 12mo. In the course of these Letters Mr. Paulding pays a few left-handed compliments to the Lon. Quarterly Review, and that periodical, not to be outdone in civility, devotes no less than twenty-three pages (519-542) of the number for January, 1824, to a review of the Sketch. Timothy Tickler (Letters, No. XVIII., Blackw. Mag., xvi. 293) and John Neal (Blackw., Mag., xvii. 199) unite with the Quarterly Review in censure of Mr. Paulding's work.
      9. Koningsmarke, the Long Finne, N. York, 1823, 2 vols. 12mo; 2d ed., entitled Old Times in the New World, 1835, 2 vols. 12mo; Lon., 1843, 2 vols. 12mo. See Blackw. Mag., xvii. 199.
      10. John Bull in America; or, The New Munchausen, N. York, 1824, 12mo.
      11. Merry Tales of the Three Wise Men of Gotham, 1826, 12mo. See U. States Lit. Gaz., IV. 241.
      12. The Book of St. Nicholas: a Series of Stories of the Old Dutch Settlers, 1827, 8vo. Purporting to be translated from the Dutch.
      13. The New Mirror for Travellers and Guide to the Springs, 1828, 12mo. This satire upon the ambitious style of guide-books and travellers' journals was mistaken for a serious production; and consequently its name was altered to The New Pilgrim's Progress.
      14. Tales of the Good Woman, by a Doubtful Gentleman 1829, 8vo.
      15. Chronicles of the City of Gotham, from the Papers of a Retired Common Councilman; by the Author of The Backwoodsman, 1830, 12mo.
      16. The Dutchman's Fireside; a Tale, by the Author of Letters from the South, &c., N. York, 1831, 12mo; Lon., 1831, 2 vols. 12mo; last Lon. ed., 1849, 12mo; Paris, Le Coin du Feu d'un Hollandais. Also trans. into Dutch. By far the most successful of all the author's productions, six eds. having been pub. within a year. Mr. Paulding received $1500 for the copyright.
      "Very evidently an American work, and well worthy, for its animated and graphic sketches, to be introduced to the British public."--Lon. Lit. Gazette, July 23, 1831, notice of Lon. ed.
      See, also, Westm. Rev., xv. 491.
      17. Westward Ho! a Tale, by the Author of The Dutchman's Fireside, 1832, 2 vols. 12mo. Mr. Paulding received $1500 for the copyright. See Amer. Month. Rev. iii. 56.
      18. The Life of George Washington, 1835, 2 vols. 18mo; Aberdeen, Scotland, 1836, 18mo. 5,000 copies of this work were purchased for the public schools in the United States.
      "Mr. Paulding has completely and most beautifully filled the vacuum which the works of Marshall and Sparks have left open. He has painted the boy, the man, the husband, and the Christian."--Poe's Literati, 1850, 573, q. v.
      See, also, N. Amer. Rev., xlvii. 328, n., (by E. Everett;) South. Lit. Mess., ii. 396.
      19. View of Slavery in the United States, N. York, 1836, 12mo. This work defends what is called "the southern view of the institution."
      20. A Gift from Fairy-Land, 1838. Illustrated by designs from Chapman.
      21. Affairs and Men of New Amsterdam in the Times of Governor Peter Stuyvesandt, 1843, 12mo.
      22. The Old Continental; or, The Price of Liberty; by the Author of The Dutchman's Fireside, 1846, 12mo; new ed., about 1856, 12mo.
      23. American Comedies, by J. K. Paulding and [his son] William Irving Paulding, Phila., 1847, 8vo. Contents:--I. The Bucktails; or, Americans in England, (the only one of the collection by J. K. Paulding written shortly after the war of 1812.) II. The Noble Exile. III. Madmen All; or, The Cure of Love. IV. Antipathies; or, The Enthusiasts by the Ears.
      24. The Puritan and his Daughter, N. York, 1849, 12mo; new ed., 2 vols. 12mo.
      "For the English reader's guidance it is enough to state that one-half of The Puritan's Daughter is carried on in England, and the other in America, and that it does not contain a single combination, character, digression, or speculation which has not been presented to us a dozen times at least by former romancers."--Lon. Athen., 1849, 1206.

      Many of the works above enumerated were republished by Harper & Brothers, New York, in 1835, in a uniform stereotype edition: this, however, was never completed. Mr. Paulding contributed Childe Roeliff's Pilgrimage, and Selim the Friend of Mankind, to the Tales of the Glauber Spa, (edited by Robert C. Sands;) Odds and Ends, by an Obsolete Author, to the New York Literary World and, as already stated, many papers (both in prose and verse) to various periodicals. Of these may be mentioned The New York Mirror, The Analectic, The Knickerbocker, Graham's Magazine, Godey's Lady's Book, the Democratic Review, the United States Review, the Literary World, Wheaton's National Advocate, the National Intelligencer, the Southern Press, and the Washington Union. For further notices of Mr. Paulding and his writings, see Griswold's Prose Writers of America, 4th ed., 1852, 29, 35, 38, 39, 143; his Poets and Poetry of America, 16th ed., 1855, 83; his sketch of Paulding, in Homes of American Authors, 1855, 21-32, Duyckincks' Cyc. of Amer. Lit., 1856, ii. 1-10; Blackw. Mag., xxxviii. 259, 261; Lon. Retrospec. Rev., ix. 311; South. Lit. Mess., xv. 415, (N. P. Willis's Opinion of J. K. Paulding; Life and Letters of W. Irving, Index. We quote a few opinions on Mr. Paulding's writings:
      "In Salmagundi, The Mirror for Travellers, John Bull and Brother Jonathan, and his other writings, Mr. Paulding has given almost every sort of facetious and satirical composition. He deals more largely than Irving in the whimsical and the burlesque, and he is wanting in the exquisite refinement which lends such a charm to Geoffrey Crayon's humor. The follies of men are often confirmed, rather than cured by undisguised attacks.... Mr. Paulding's novels are distinguished for considerable descriptive powers, skill in character-writing, natural humor, and a strong national feeling, which gives a tone to all his works. The Dutchman's Fireside, and Westward Ho! have the fidelity of historical pictures, and they are the best we have of the early settlers of New York and Kentucky."--Griswold's Prose Writers of America, 1852, 29, 35.
      "There is no better literary manner than the manner of Mr. Paulding. Certainly no American, and possibly no living writer of England has more of those numerous peculiarities which go to the formation of a happy style. It is questionable, we think, whether any writer of any country combines as many of these peculiarities with as much of that essential negative virtue, the absence of affectation."--EDGAR A. POE: Literati, 1850, 574.
      "His works are exclusively and eminently national, and his descriptions of natural scenery are often singularly beautiful."--Lon. Athen., 1835, 11: Lit. of the Nineteenth Century: America.
      "Without any disparagement of such reputation as Mr. Paulding may have gained in his own country, the English have never ranked him among their favourite American novelists. According to our estimation, Cooper, Miss Sedgwick, Ware, and even Bird, come before him; to say nothing of writers who have succeeded in the short story,--as widely differing in colour and intention as Irving and Hawthorne and Willis and Greenwood. We know few authors to whom the epithet 'tiresome' can be more deliberately and justly applied than to Mr. Paulding. He conceives himself to be jocose when he is only dreary; he makes a boast of his subtlety while exhibiting to us the commonest sleight-of-hand tricks of the tale-trader. But we must still remind the reader that such are precisely the qualities on which national tastes and sympathies are apt to disagree. Prophets have different honours and dishonours at home and abroad."--Lon. Athen., 1848, 1206.
      [French passage omitted.]
      Mr. Paulding died at Tarrytown, New York, April 4, 1860. His Literary Life, compiled by his son, W. I. Paulding, was published, April, 1867, cr. 8vo, and his Select Works, in 4 vols. cr. 8vo,--I. The Bulls and the Jonathans; II. Tales of the Good Woman; III. A Book of Vagaries; IV. The Dutchman's Fireside,--1867-68, are also issued by C. Scribner & Co., New York.


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