Monday, July 04, 2011

Roger Sherman ~ Founder and Patriot

Roger Sherman
1721 - 1793
Representative of Connecticut to the Continental Congress
Signer of the Declaration of Independence
Signer of the Continental Association, the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution
(He was the only person to sign all four documents)

Roger Sherman was born in Massachusetts, but moved with his family, by foot, to New Milford, Connecticut in 1743.  He and his brother opened the towns first store.  Despite his lack of formal education, he was admitted to the Bar of Litchfield, Connecticut in 1754, during which he wrote A Caveat Against Injustice and was chosen to represent New Milford in the Connecticut House of Representatives from 1755 to 1758 and from 1760 to 1761. In 1766 he was elected to the Governor's Council of the Connecticut General Assembly, where he served until 1785. In 1784 he was elected Mayor of New Haven, which office he held until his death.  Additionally, he taught religion at Yale College.

Sherman is responsible for setting up the House of Representatives (representative government) and the Senate (equal representation for the states) in the US Constitution.

Robert Treat Paine ~ Founder and Patriot

Robert Treat Paine
1731 - 1814
Representative of Massachusetts to the Continental Congress
Signer of the Declaration of Independence

Robert Treat Paine came to the cause of Independence early.  Born in Boston, graduating from Harvard College as a teacher and returning to attend Law School, Paine was actively involved in resistance to the British in the 1760's and early 1770's, against the hated Stamp Act and Townshend Acts, and quickly became a patriot for the cause of independence. In 1770, Boston hired him to prosecute the British soldiers involved with the "Boston Massacre," and while he lost his case to opposition council John Adams, he became quite popular with the patriots.  In 1775, he was elected to the Second Continental Congress as a delegate from Massachusetts, and supported the move for independence.  One of his most important jobs in the Continental Congress was to secure gun powder for the troops and assist in starting the manufacture of salt peter to do so.

He helped write the Constitution of Massachusetts and served as a Supreme Court Justice in Massachusetts.  He was respected as a scholar and was known to be devoutly religious, a firm believer in the divine origin of the Christian religion.

Signers of the Declaration of Independence

The Signers of the Declaration of Independence

John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York:
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey:
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross

Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas M'Kean

Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carrol

George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton

North Carolina:
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Thomas Lynch, Arthur Middleton

Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

Click on the links to read their stories.