Many of the Founding Fathers Were Lawyers

When the term “founding fathers” is used, it may be describing the men who attended the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787 and ultimately produced the U.S. Constitution. The term can also be used to describe the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Without argument, it can be said that the men who fit into the category described by this term have shaped and formed the greatest country to exist on the face of the earth to date.

Prominent Lawyers

Within the ranks of men who participated in molding this country, there are numerous men who practiced in the field of law. Among the prominent lawyers were Thomas Stone, William Few, William Paterson and Alexander Hamilton. We would have known very little about the demeanor of these men at the Constitutional Convention except for the fact that William Pierce, of Georgia, made written notes of each delegate who attended. The sketches he provided were published in 1828 in the newspaper in Savannah, Georgia, for everyone to read.

William Few

From these verbal descriptions, we learn that William Few was considered a natural genius by Mr. Pierce. The notes say that Few “has acquired some knowledge of legal matters” and that he practices law in Georgia. He had been in Congress two terms and was 35 years old at the time of the Constitutional Convention.

William Paterson

Another attorney found within the ranks of the founding fathers is William Paterson. Pierce recorded that this man’s presence created astonishment and wonder. Paterson’s modesty was profound, and apparently when looking at him, an individual would not be prone to guess that he had great talent as an orator and a lawyer. It is made evident from Pierce’s writings that large numbers of people highly esteemed William Paterson and heaped praise upon him.

Alexander Hamilton

Pierce gives much credit to Alexander Hamilton in the notes. He expresses that Hamilton deserves to be celebrated for the talents he possesses. Hamilton is lauded for being a finished scholar and a practitioner of the law. It is said that Hamilton’s style of being so convincing and engaging bring together the heart and the head of listeners to agree with him.


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John Adams

John Adams is among the most remembered attorneys in the founding of the United States. He became the second president of the country, following George Washington. He was relentless in his previous role of convincing Congress to declare independence from England. Additionally, he helped draft the Declaration of Independence with Thomas Jefferson. This man who played such a pivotal role in the birth of this country’s freedom drew his last earthly breath on its 50th birthday, July 4, 1826.

Peter Wendt is a writer and researcher living in Austin, TX. If you are looking for a St. Louis personal injury attorney, he recommends S.E. Farris.

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