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Nathaniel Scudder - One of America's Founding Fathers

Posted on Thursday, December 24, 2020

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Birth: 1738
Death: 1783 (age 42 or 43)
Colony: New Jersey
Occupation: Physician, Soldier, Politician
Significance: Signed The Articles of Confederation (at the age of 39 or 40); served as a member of the Continental Congress (1777-1781)

Articles of Confederation - Original 1777 Printing

Nathaniel Scudder was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. Born in New Jersey, Scudder attended the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) to study medicine and graduated in 1751.

Upon the completion of his studies, Scudder began a medical practice in what is today, Freehold Borough, New Jersey. Scudder was also engaged in politics and a vocal critic of Britain. Scudder joined the New Jersey Committee of Safety and the state militia, serving as Lieutenant. In 1776, Scudder was elected to the New Jersey Legislative Council, and he served on the Council while remaining an active participant in the New Jersey Militia.

In 1777, Scudder was elected to serve in the Second Continental Congress, and again Scudder served his legislative duties while remaining an active militia member. Scudder was promoted to the rank of Colonel, and he commanded his own regiment in 1777. In June 1778, Scudder led his regiment into the Battle of Monmouth as an active Congressman. In between battles and militia duties, Scudder traveled to Philadelphia to deal with important matters in the Continental Congress. After New Jersey had ratified the Articles of Confederation, Scudder signed the Articles on November 26, 1778.

Scudder continued to serve in the Continental Congress and in the New Jersey Militia until he was killed leading his militia regiment against British forces near present day Shrewsbury, New Jersey on October 17, 1781. 

Nathaniel Scudder in Philadelphia

Nathaniel Scudder traveled to Philadelphia to serve as a member of the Second Continental Congress. While in the Continental Congress, Scudder worked at Independence Hall, where he signed The Articles of Confederation. 

Today, Independence Hall is one of the stops visited along The Constitutional Walking Tour!

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