The first of the Livingston name to arrive in America was Robert Livingston, who came from Scotland in 1674. The family had been one of prominence on the other side of the Atlantic and he held important public posts after getting to America. In 1679 he married Alida Schuyler, sister of Peter Schuyler. They had two sons: Philip and Robert.
Their eldest son was Philip Livingston. Philip had for sons: Robert, the oldest, Peter, Philip and William. Both Peter and Philip were members of the Continental Congress, with Philip signing the Declaration of Independence. William became the Governor of New Jersey during the Revolutionary War and was a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1787. Sarah Van Brugh Livingston, daughter of Governor William Livingston, married John Jay, who became the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.
Robert Livingston, the 2nd son of Robert and Alida Livingston, inherited 13,000 acres on the Hudson River. His son, Robert, married Margaret Beekman and became Judge on the New York Supreme Court.
Robert and Margaret's son, Robert R. Livingston, was a member of the Continental Congress and one of the five people who drafted the Declaration of Independence. He became the 1st Chancellor of the State of New York and, as such, administered the oath of office to George Washington, as 1st President of the United States. Robert R. Livingston's brother, Edward, became Secretary of State under President Martin Van Buren, the 8th President of the United States (1837-1841).