american flag                           John Dickinson (1732-1808)

john dickinsonDescended of Quakers, John Dickinson was born on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, where his family owned a large tobacco plantation. He took an early interest in the law and studied at London’s Middle Temple before returning to the colonies to practice in Pennsylvania, where he was a protege of Benjamin Chew of Germantown. An important spokesman for colonial rights, Dickinson helped draft a response to the Stamp Act and attended both the first and second Continental Congress, where he supported armed resistance despite his pacifist Quaker background. When the fighting began, however, he sought reconciliation with the mother country rather than separation and did not sign the Declaration of Independence. After serving a term as President of Pennsylvania, he returned to Delaware and served as a key delegate to the Constitutional Convention.

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