(1640—1691) merchant and rebel leader in America
US rebel, who migrated from Germany to New Amsterdam in 1660. Leisler and other merchants resented English control of the colony from 1664. As a militia officer in the Glorious Revolution in New York, he led the humbler residents against both James II and the aristocratic patroons (lords of the manor) and assumed the governorship in 1689. When Governor Slaughter arrived from England in 1691 Leisler resisted and was captured; he was tried for treason and hanged. His execution precipitated factional conflict for a generation.