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Jared Ingersoll - One of America's Founding Fathers

Posted on Tuesday, December 31, 2019

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Birth: October 24, 1749
Death: October 31, 1822 (age 73)
Colony: Pennsylvania
Occupation: Lawyer, Politician
Significance: signed the United States Constitution (at the age of 37); and served as Attorney General of Pennsylvania (1811-1816)

Jared Ingersoll Statue in Signers' Hall at the National Constitution Center

Jared Ingersoll was born and raised in New Haven, Connecticut, and he attended Yale College. After graduating, Ingersoll moved to Philadelphia and began his legal career. Ingersoll traveled to Europe in 1773, but upon his return to Philadelphia in 1778, he was a strong supporter of American Independence. Ingersoll was elected to the Continental Congress in 1778 where he spoke in favor of a stronger centralized government.

Ingersoll was also later named as a member of the Constitutional Convention which met in his adopted hometown of Philadelphia in the Summer of 1787. At the Constitutional Convention, Ingersoll represented Pennsylvania and helped to debate, draft and sign the United States Constitution

Following the Constitutional Convention, Ingersoll continued his career as a lawyer and had great success, becoming one of the most prominent lawyers in the country. Ingersoll practiced law before the U.S. Supreme Court and argued some of the most memorable cases in early American history, including Hylton v. United States, which helped to clarify the government's rights to tax citizens, and Chisholm v. Georgia, which was arguably the most influential case in the first decade of the Supreme Court and led to the creation of the Eleventh Amendment to clarify issues of state sovereignty. In 1811, Ingersoll was named Attorney General of Pennsylvania and the following year in 1812, he ran for Vice President of the United States on the Federalist ticket under DeWitt Clinton, but they lost to James Madison and James Monroe. Ingersoll remained as the Attorney General of Pennsylvania until 1816, leaving to become a United States Attorney in Pennsylvania, a position he held until his death in 1822.

Jared Ingersoll in Philadelphia

Jared Ingersoll lived in Philadelphia for many years as the city became his adopted home after he graduated from college. Ingersoll worked in the city while a member of the Continental Congress starting in 1778. While a member of the Continental Congress, Ingersoll worked at Independence Hall. Ingersoll once again worked in Independence Hall when he helped write the Constitution of the United States as a member of the Constitutional Convention in 1787. Today, you can see a statue commemorating Ingersoll for his role in the creation of the United States Constitution in the Signers' Hall exhibit of the National Constitution Center. Signers' Garden pays tribute to the Founding Fathers, including those such as Ingersoll who signed the Constitution of the United States. The National Constitution Center, Congress Hall, Independence Hall and Signers' Garden are all stops visited along The Constitutional Walking Tour!

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