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Flower, Roswell Pettibone, 1835-1899: Home

Portrait of Roswell Pettibone Flower, 1835-1899

Portrait of Roswell Flower

Works by Roswell Pettibone Flower

Brief Biographical Sketch

Birth: August 7, 1835 
Death: May 12, 1899

NYMC History:

  • Treasurer, Board of Trustees, 1887-1899.
  • Laid cornerstone  the Flower Free Surgical Hospital October 20, 1888.
  • Funder, Flower Hospital Pavilion, 1888.

Additional Biographical Information:

  • Governor (33rd), New York State, 1892-1894.
  • United States Congressman, 1889-1891.
  • Banker, RP Flower & Company, New York, NY.
  • Deputy Postmaster, Watertown, NY. 1853.


During his gubernatorial tenure, a new banking law was sanctioned; the World’s Columbian Exposition was  launched in New York City and a constitutional amendment changed the governor’s term from three years to two. The sixth of nine children, he was raised in northern New York state, who worked as a teacher, store clerk, and deputy postmaster in Watertown, NY.  With the income he saved, he purchased an interest in a jewelry business. He then became a manager of his late brother-in law’s $4,000,000 estate in New York City where he opened the bank and brokerage house of R. P. Flower & Co.  He was very generous to many charitable organizations throughout the state.  

"Charity is the bridge between the rich and poor, and it gives me pleasure to bestow a part of what I have earned for this project. We who have these worldly goods to bestow, should do it, thus closing up the gap between the rich and the poor, and putting them on a level with one another and binding all nationalities together." -- Roswell P. Flower, October 20, 1888, at the laying of the cornerstone of Flower Free Surgical Hospital.