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Samuel Hazard

Samuel Hazard was born in Philadelphia on March 20, 1714, the son of Margaret Hallett and Nathaniel Hazard. As a businessman he is remembered chiefly for a scheme he developed to colonize Indian territory under the guise of Christianizing the inhabitants. He explored the territory that he and his group had targeted, bargained with Indians for land, and obtained a release from the colonial Connecticut government regarding its claims to the area. Due to his early death on July 14, 1758, the project was never completed.

Hazard lived originally in New York, where he had served as one of the original trustees of Princeton University (then the College of New Jersey). His son Ebenezer was educated at Princeton, graduating in 1762, and later becoming Postmaster-general of the United States. Benjamin Franklin was an admirer of Hazard's "large collection of ores, minerals and other fossils of these parts of America," as he described it to a friend in 1764. Franklin went so far as to send a descriptive catalog of its contents to his scholarly contacts in England. At that time, six years after Hazard's death, the collection was said to reside in the "Library Company of Philadelphia," but its eventual disposition from there remains unknown.

WILSON, W.E. (1994) The history of mineral collecting 1530-1799. Mineralogical Record, 25 (6), 241 pp.
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