North Carolina-Declaration of Independence-January 7

North Carolina People, Places, and Things-January 7
I am the dad to five adult children. As they were growing up I attempted to remind them they were special and to implore them to learn something new. My goal was to do that daily.

In 2016 my goal is to learn something new daily on the people, places, and things that make North Carolina special.

Sometimes the special accomplishments in North Carolina occured by individuals not born in the state.

That happened with the Declaration of Independence which was signed on July 4, 1776. The document contained 56 signatures with the names  of three North Carolina delegates amongst the 56.


None of the 3 were born in North Carolina.

Their names were Joseph Hewes, William Hooper, and John Penn. Eac of them had an amazing story and I will provide a quick synopsis.

Joseph Hewes was born near Kingston, in New Jersey, in the year 1730. Kingston is a place like no other in the state of New Jersey. First it is still unincorporated and it actually is part of three distinct New Jersey Counties (Somerest, Middlesex, and Mercer).

Joseph Hewes attended Princeton University and became a successful merchant in Philadelphia, PA and moved to Edenton, NC at the age of 30.


When he arrived in Edenton,NC in 1760 he quickly became successful. So successful that people trusted him and he was appointed to serve in the colonial legislature of the his province. In 1774 he went to Philadelphia as one of three delegates representing North Carolina.

William Hooper was born in 1742 in Boston,MA. He graduated from Harvard College in 1760, continued his studies in the law, and settled in Wilmington, North Carolina in 1767. In 1773 he represented Wilmington in the General Assembly of North Carolina. He attended the Continental Congress in 1774.


John Penn was born in Caroline County, Virginia in 1741, to a family of means. His father died when he was eighteen years old, and though he had received only a rudimentary education at a country school, he had access to the library of a relative and went on to become a lawyer.image

He was licensed to practice law in the state of Virginia at age twenty-two. In 1774 he moved to Granville County, North Carolina, where he established a law practice and soon became a member of the political community. He was elected to attend the provincial Congress and the Continetial Congress in Philadelphia.

Hewes, Hooper,  and Penn prove you don’t have to be born in place to make a difference in a place.

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