A total of 56 men signed the Declaration of Independence. They knew that placing their signatures on this historic document would mean that the British would consider them to be traitors and that they could lose everything they owned including their lives. Yet these brave men knew that independence from the British was far more important than each of them. They were willing to sacrifice everything for independence and freedom.
How much do you really know about some of the men who were willing to make that sacrifice? Did you know that Benjamin Franklin was the oldest person to sign the Declaration of Independence at the age of 70 and Edward Rutledge from South Carolina was the youngest signer at 26? Or did you know that two of the signers, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson would serve as both Vice President and President of the United States?
Most of us are familiar with the names of our Founding Fathers, but how many of the signers of the Declaration of Independence can you name and what do you know about them? Are you familiar with names such as George Clymer, Caesar Rodney, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton, Button Gwinnett, Arthur Middleton, Oliver Wolcott or Thomas Stone?
One was an orphan. One was a High Sheriff. One was a sheriff and judge. One was a Ship’s Master by the age of 21. One was a prosperous landowner who stood to lose it all by signing. One was a physician and surgeon. One was captured by the British and lost most of his fortune during the war. One was born in England and immigrated to America only 11 years before signing the Declaration of Independence.
Can you match the names to the traits listed above? Can you name another signer of the Declaration of Independence who later became Vice President of the United States, but not President?
If freedom and independence is as important to you as you claim, don’t you think it worth knowing the men who put everything on the line to get them for you? Take a little time today to learn something about the signers of the Declaration of Independence, who they were, what they did and what happened to them. After all, where would you be today with them?