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lative pacity, he was a determined opposer of the mercenary views of the royal Governor, John Wentworth, who, desiring to conciliate him to his interest, appointed him justice of the peace. This, though a trivial distinction, was a token of the Governor's respect for his talents and influence. Doctor Bartlett accepted the appointment, but continued firm in his opposition. His attachment to the patriotic side, and the spirit with which he resisted the royal exactions, soon afterwards produced his dismissal from the commission of justice of the peace, as also from a command which he held in the militia.
In 1774, a Convention was convoked at Exeter, for the purpose of choosing deputies to the Continental Congress, which was to meet at Philadelphia. In this Convention, Doctor Bartlett, and John Pickering, a lawyer of Portsmouth, were appointed delegates to Congress; but the former, having a little previously lost his house by fire, was obliged to decline the honor. The latter gentleman wishing likewise to be excused, others were chosen in their stead. From this time the political difficul. ties in New Hampshire increased. At length Governor Wentworth found it expedient to retire on board a man of war then lying in the harbor of Portsmouth ; and soon after issued his proclamation, adjourning the State Assembly till the following April. This act, however, was disregarded, and soon terminated the royal government in New Hampshire, after it had existed there for a period of ninety years.
In September, 1775, Doctor Bartlett, who had been elected to the Continental Congress, took his seat in that body. Here having largely participated in an unwearied devotion to business, his health was considerably impaired: but in a second election, the ensuing year, he was again chosen a delegate to the same body. He was present on the memorable occasion of taking the vote on the question of a declaration of indepen. dence. On putting the question, it was agreed to begin with the northernmost colony. Doctor Bartlett, therefore, had the honor of being the first to vote for, and the first after the President, to sign the Declaration of Independence.
In August, 1778, a new election taking place, Doctor Bartlett was again chosen a delegate to Congress. He continued at Philadelphia, however, but a small part of the session; and his domestic concerns requiring his attention, he resided the remaining part of his life in New Hampshire. In 1779, he was appointed Chief Justice of the Court of Common Pleas. In 1782, he became an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and in 1788, was advanced to the head of the bench. Doctor Bartlett was a member of the Convention which adopted the present Constitution of the State ; and by his zeal greatly aided its ratification. In 1789, he was elected a Senator to Congress; but his age and infirmities induced him to decline the honor. In 1793 he was elected first Governor of the State, which office he filled with his usual fidelity and good sense, until the infirm state of his health obliged him to resign, and retire wholly from public life. He did not remain long, however, to enjoy the repose which he coveted; but died on the 19th of May, 1795, in the sixty-sixth year of his age.
The patriotism of this eminent man was of a pure and highly disinte
Tested nature He rose to distinction unaided by family influence or Narty connexions; and maintained through life a reputation for strict integrity, great penetration of mind, and considerable abilities.
CARTER BRAXTON was born in Newington, Virginia, on the 10th of September, 1736. His father was a wealthy planter, and his mother the daughter of Robert Carter, who was for some time a member, and the President of the King's council.
Carter Braxton was liberally educated at the college of William and Mary; and on his father's death, he became possessed of a considerable fortune, consisting principally of land and slaves. At the early age of nineteen, he received a large accession to his estate by marriage. But having the misfortune to lose his wife, he soon after embarked for England, with the view of improving himself by travel. He returned to America in 1760; and the following year was married to a daughter of Richard Corbin, of Lannerville, by whom he had sixteen children. Mr. Braxton did not study any profession, but became a gentleman planter, and lived in a style of hospitality and splendor, which was not incommensurate with his means. Upon his return from Europe, he was called to a seat in the House of Burgesses, where he was characterized for his palciotic zeal and firmness, in all the duties which he was called upon to discharge.
In 1775, Mr. Braxton was elected a delegate to Congress. In that body he soon after took his seat, and was present on the occasion of signing the Declaration of Independence. În June, 1776, the ConvenLion of Virginia reduced the number of their delegates in Congress, and, in consequence, he was omitted. Mr. Braxton was a member oî the first General Assembly, under the republican Constitution, which met at Williamsburg. Here he had the honor of receiving, in connexion with Thomas Jefferson, an expression of the public thanks for the “ diligence ability, and integrity, with which they executed the important trust reposed in them, as delegates in the general Congress."
In 1786, he became a member of the Council of State, which office he held until the 30th of March, 1791. After an interval of a few years, during which he occupied a seat in the House of Delegates, he was re-elected into the Executive Council. He died on the 10th of October, 1797, by means of an attack of paralysis.
Mr. Braxton was a gentleman of a polished mind, of considerable conversational powers, and respectable talents. His latter days were unfortunately clouded by pecuniary embarrassments, caused by the miscarriage of his commercial speculations, and by several vexatious lawsuits. Of his numerous family, but one daughter, it is believed, survives.
Charles CARROLL was a descendant of Daniel Carroll, an Irish gene teman, who emigrated from England to America about the year 1659. He settled in the province of Maryland, where, a few years after, he received the appointment of Judge, and Register of the land office, and became agent for Lord Baltimore.
Charles Carroll, the father of the subject of the present sketch, was born in 1702. His son, Charles Carroll, surnamed of Carrollton, was born September 8, 1737, 0. S. at Annapolis, in the province of Maryland. At the age of eight years, he was sent to France for the
purpose obtaining an education. He was placed at a college of English Jesuits, at St. Omer's, where he remained for six years. Afterwards he staid some time at Rheims, whence he was removed to the college of Louis le Grand. On leaving college, he entered upon the study of the civil law, at Bourges; from which place he returned to Paris, where he remained till 1757, in which year he removed to London, and commenced the study of law. He returned to America in 1764, an accomplished scholar, and an accomplished man. Although he had lived abroad, and might natyrally be supposed to have imbibed a predilection for the moarchical institutions of Europe, he entered with great spirit into the controversy between the colonies and Great Britain, which, about the time of his arrival, was beginning to assume a most serious aspect.
A few years following the repeal of the Stamp Act, the violent excitement occasioned by that measure, in a degree subsided throughout all the colonies. In this calmer state of things the people of Maryland participated. But about the year 1771, great commotion was excited in that province, in consequence of the arbitrary conduct of Governor Eden and his council, touching the fees of the civil officers of the Colonial Government.
The controversy which grew out of this, became exceedingly spirited. It involved the great principles of the revolution. Several writers of distinguished character enlisted themselves on different sides of the question. Among these writers, no one was more conspicuous than Mr. Carroll
. The natural consequence of his firmness in defence of the rights of the people was, that great confidence was reposed in him on their part, and he was looked up to as one who was eminently qualified to lead in the great struggle which was approaching between the colonies and the parent country.
An anecdote is related of Mr. Carroll, which will illustrate his influence with the people of Maryland. By a resolution of the delegates of Maryland, on the 22d day of June, 1774, the importation of tea was prohibited. Sometime after, however, a vessel arrived at Annapolis
, having a quantity of this article on board. This becoming known, the people assembled in great multitudes, to take effectual measures to prevent its being landed. At length the excitement became so high, that the personal safety of the captain of the vessel became endangered. In
this state of things, the friends of the captain made application to Mr. Carroll, to interpose his influence with the people in his behalf. The public indignation was too great to be easily allayed. This Mr. Carroll perceived, and advised the captain and his friends, as the only probable means of safety to himself, to set fire to the vessel, and ourn it to the water's edge. This alternative was indeed severe; but, as it was obviously a measure of necessity, the vessel was drawn out, her sails were set, her colors unfurled, in which attitude the fire was applied to her, and, in the presence of an immense concourse of people, she was con. sumed. This atonement was deemed satisfactory, and the captain was no farther molested.
In the early part of 1776, Mr. Carroll, whose distinguished exertions in Maryland had become extensively known, was appointed by Congress, in connexion with Dr. Franklin and Samuel Chase, on a coinmission to proceed to Canada, to persuade the people of that province to relinquish their allegiance to the crown of England, and unite with the Americans in their struggle for independence.
In the discharge of their duties, the commissioners met with unexpected difficulties. The defeat and death of Montgomery, together with the compulsion which the American troops found it necessary to exercise, in obtaining the means of support in that province, conspired to diminish the ardor of the Canadians in favor of a union with the colonies, and even, at length, to render them hostile to the measure. To conciliate their affections, and to bring to a favorable result the object of their mission, the commissioners employed their utmost ingenuity and influence. They issued their proclamations, in which they assured the people of the disposition of Congress to remedy the temporary evils, which the inhabitants suffered in consequence of the presence of the American troops, so soon as it should be in their power to provide specie, and clothing, and provisions. A strong tide, however, was now setting against the American colonies, the strength of which was much increased by the Roman Catholic priests, who, as a body, had always been opposed to any connexion with the United Colonies. Despairing of accomplishing the wishes of Congress, the commissioners at length abandoned the object, and returned to Philadelphia.
The great subject of independence was, at this time, undergoing a discussion in the hall of Congress. The Maryland delegation, in that body, had been instructed by their Convention to refuse their assent to a declara. tion of independence. On returning to Maryland, Mr. Carroll resumed his seat in the Convention, and, with the advocates of a deciaration of independence, urged the withdrawal of the above instructions, and the granting of power to their delegates to unite in such a declaration. The friends of the measure had at length the happiness, on the 28th of June, of procuring a new set of instructions, which secured the vote of the important province of Maryland in favor of the independence of America.
On the same day on which the great question was decided in Congress, in favor of a declaration of independence, Mr. Carroll was elected a delegate to that body from Maryland, and accordingly took his seat on the eighteenth of the same month.
Although not a member of Congress at the time the question of a de claration of independence was settled, Mr. Carroll had the honor of greatly contributing to a measure so auspicious to the interests of his country, by assisting in procuring the withdrawal of the prohibiting instructions, and the adoption of a new set, by which the Maryland delegates found themselves authorized to vote for independence. He had the honor, also, of affixing his signature to the declaration on the second of August, at which time the members generally signed an engrossed copy, which had been prepared for that purpose.
A signature to the declaration, was an important step for every individual member of Congress. It exposed the signers of it to the confiscation of their estates, and the loss of life, should the British arms prove victorious. Few men had more at stake in respect to property than Mr. Carroll, he being considered the richest individual in the colonies. But wealth was of secondary value in his estimation, in comparison with the rights and liberties of his country. When asked whether he would annex his name, he replied, “most willingly," and seizing a pen, instantly subscribed "to this record of glory." "There go a few millions,” said some one who watched the pen as it traced the name of “Charles Carroll, of Carrollton," on the parchment. Millions would indeed have gone, for his fortune was princely, had not success crowned the American arms, in the long fought contest.
Mr. Carroll was continued a member of Congress until 1778, at which time he resigned his seat in that body, and devoted himself more particularly to the interests of his native State. He had served in her Convention in 1776, in the latter part of which year he had assisted in drafting her Constitution. Soon after, the new Constitution went into operation, and Mr. Carroll was chosen a member of the Senate of Maryland. In 1781 he was re-elected to the same station, and in 1788, on the adoption of the Federal Constitution, was chosen to the Senate of the United States.
In 1791, Mr. Carroll relinquished his seat in the National Senate, and was again called to the Senate of his native State. This office he continued to hold until 1804, at which time the democratic party was suc. cessful in electing their candidate, to the exclusion of this long tried and faithful patriot. At this time, Mr. Carroll took leave of public life, and sought in retirement the quiet enjoyment of his family circle.
Since the date of his retirement from public office, few incidents have occurred in the life of this worthy man, which demand particular notice. Like a peaceful stream, his days glided along, and continued to be lengthened out, till the generation of illustrious men, with whom he acted on the memorable fourth of July, 1776, had all descended to the tomb. He died in 1832.
“ These last thirty years of his life,” says a recent writer, “have passed away in serenity and happiness, almost unparalleled in the history of man. He has enjoyed, as it were, an Indian summer of existence, tranquil and lovely period, when the leaves of the forest are richly va.