Richard Coote, 1st Earl of Bellomont
d.5 Mar 1700/1 New York City, New York, United States
Facts and Events
Richard Coote, 1st Earl of Bellomont (sometimes spelled Bellamont, 1636 – 5 March 1700/1), known as The Lord Coote between 1683 and 1689, was a member of the English Parliament and a colonial governor. Born in Ireland, he was an early supporter of William and Mary, siding with them in the Glorious Revolution.
In 1695 he was given commissions as governor of the provinces of New York, Massachusetts Bay, and New Hampshire, which he held until his death. He did not arrive in the New World until 1698, and spent most of his tenure as governor in New York. He spent a little over a year in Massachusetts, and only two weeks in New Hampshire. His time in New York was marked by divisive politics resulting from Leisler's Rebellion (1689–1691), and difficult and ultimately unsuccessful negotiations to keep the Iroquois from engaging in peace talks with New France. Frontier issues were also in the forefront during his time in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, where lumber and security from the Abenaki threat dominated his tenure.
He was a major financial sponsor of William Kidd, whose privateering was later deemed to have descended into piracy. Bellomont engineered the arrest of Kidd in Boston, and had him returned to England, where he was tried, convicted, and hanged.