Signers of The Articles of Confederation

The signers of America’s first constitution, the Articles of Confederation, are less well-known than those of the Constitution or the Declaration of Independence, but they are no less important to our history. Some basic demographic information about these men is presented below.

NameStatePlace of BirthBirth DateDeath DateOccupationReligion
Adams, AndrewConnecticutStratford, CT1/173611/26/1797Lawyer?
Adams, SamuelMassachusettsBoston, MA9/27/172210/2/1803MerchantCO
Adams, ThomasVirginiaNew Kent Co., VA17308/1788Businessman?
Banister, JohnVirginiaPetersburg, VA12/26/17349/30/1788Lawyer?
Bartlett, JosiahNew HampshireAmesbury, MA11/21/17295/19/1795PhysicianCO
Carroll, DanielMarylandUpper Marlboro, MD7/22/17307/5/1796FarmerRC
Clingan, WilliamPennsylvaniaChester Co., PA17215/9/1790Judge?
Collins, JohnRhode IslandNewport, RI6/8/17173/4/1795Lawyer?
Dana, FrancisMassachusettsCharlestown, MA6/13/17434/25/1811Lawyer?
Dickinson, JohnDelawareTrappe, MD11/19/17322/14/1808LawyerQU/EP
Drayton, William HenrySouth CarolinaCharleston, SC9/17429/3/1779Lawyer?
Duane, JamesNew YorkNew York, NY2/6/17332/1/1797Judge?
Duer, WilliamNew YorkDevonshire, England3/18/17475/7/1799Judge?
Ellery, WilliamRhode IslandNewport, RI12/22/17272/15/1820Lawyer/MerchantCO
Gerry, ElbridgeMassachusettsMarblehead, MA7/17/174411/23/1814MerchantEP
Hancock, JohnMassachusettsQuincy, MA1/12/173710/8/1793MerchantCO
Hanson, JohnMarylandCharles Co., MD4/3/171511/22/1783Planter?
Harnett, CorneliusNorth CarolinaChowan Co., NC4/20/17234/28/1781Merchant/Farmer?
Harvie, JohnVirginiaAlbemarle Co., VA17422/6/1807Lawyer?
Heyward Jr., ThomasSouth CarolinaSt. Helena Parish, SC7/28/17463/6/1809Lawyer/Plantation Owner?
Holten, SamuelMassachusettsDanvers, MA6/9/17381/2/1816Doctor?
Hosmer, TitusConnecticutWest Hartford, CT17368/4/1780Lawyer?
Huntington, SamuelConnecticutWindham, CT7/5/17311/5/1796LawyerCO
Hutson, RichardSouth CarolinaPrince William Parish, SC7/9/17484/12/1795LawyerCO?
Langworthy, EdwardGeorgiaSavannah, GA173811/2/1802Teacher?
Laurens, HenrySouth CarolinaCharleston, SC3/6/172412/8/1792Merchant?
Lee, Francis LightfootVirginiaMt. Pleasant, VA10/14/17341/11/1797Plantation Owner?
Lee, Richard HenryVirginiaStratford, VA1/20/17326/19/1794Plantation Owner/Merchant?
Lewis, FrancisNew YorkLlandaff, Wales3/21/171312/30/1802Merchant?
Lovell, JamesMassachusettsHalifax, NS10/31/17377/14/1789Teacher?
Marchant, HenryRhode IslandMartha’s Vineyard, MA4/9/17418/30/1796Lawyer?
Mathews, JohnSouth CarolinaCharleston, SC174411/17/1802Lawyer?
McKean, ThomasDelawareChester Co., PA3/19/17356/24/1817LawyerPB
Morris, GouvernourNew YorkBronx, NY1/31/175211/6/1816LawyerEP
Morris, RobertPennsylvaniaLiverpool, England1/31/17345/8/1806MerchantEP
Penn, JohnNorth CarolinaCaroline Co., VA5/6/17409/14/1788Lawyer?
Reed, JosephPennsylvaniaTrenton, NJ8/27/17413/5/1785Lawyer?
Roberdeau, DanielPennsylvaniaMauritius17271/5/1795Merchant?
Scudder, NathanielNew JerseyLong Island, NY5/10/173310/17/1781Doctor?
Sherman, RogerConnecticutNewton, MA4/19/17217/23/1793LawyerCO
Smith, Jonathan BayardPennsylvaniaPortsmouth, NH2/21/17426/16/1812Merchant?
Telfair, EdwardGeorgiaTown Head, Scoland17359/17/1807Merchant?
Van Dyke, NicholasDelawareNew Castle Co., DE9/25/17382/19/1789Lawyer?
Walton, JohnGeorgiaVA17381783Planter?
Wentworth Jr., JohnNew HampshireSomersworth, NH7/17/17451/10/1787Lawyer?
Williams, JohnNorth CarolinaHanover Co., VA3/14/173110/10/1799Soldier?
Witherspoon, JohnNew JerseyGifford, Scotland2/5/172311/15/1794MinisterPB
Wolcott, OliverConnecticutWindsor, CT11/20/172612/1/1797LawyerCO

Religion key:

AN = Anglican
CO = Congregationalist
DE = Deist
EP = Episcopal
PB = Presbyterian
RC = Roman Catholic
UN = Unitarian

Birth places, birth and death dates, and occupations: Declaration Signer’s Factsheet from NARA, Biographies of the Founding Fathers from Colonial Hall, Wikipedia. Religion: A Note on the Signers of the Declaration of Independence and God & Country.

Note on religion: Pinning down the religion of some people on this list is notoriously difficult. The “Deist” label, in particular, is a difficult one to assign. The best attempt has been made to assign labels accurately – the assignment can be debated, and this fact is readily acknowledged.

Note on dates: in 1752, the British Empire, of which America was a member at the time, adopted the Gregorian calendar. To do so required jumping ahead 11 days. Most of the signers of the Articles were born before this shift. Many people at the time shifted their own birth date 11 days as well – someone born on January 1, 1740, might have considered his birth date to be January 12 in future years. When I have no information about a pre-shift date, I have used the most widely cited date. When I do, I have used the pre-shift date.