The 39 Days of the Brave: - William Few Day 11

Constitution Signer


William Few


William Few, Delegate to the Constitutional Convention, was born in Maryland on June 8, 1748, and grew up from the age of ten in North Carolina. In 1771, family opposition to the royal governor led to the hanging death of his brother and to destruction of the Few family farm. The Few family moved at that time to Georgia, and William followed in 1776 as he joined his family near Wrightsboro. There he won admittance to the bar and began his practice as an attorney.


During the Revolutionary War, William served as a lieutenant colonel in the dragoons and also began his political career as he was elected to the Georgia Provincial Congress. Other political offices he held included surveyor-general, Indian commissioner, and a seat on the Georgia executive council.


In 1787, Few became one of six Georgians appointed to the Constitutional Convention, although two appointees never attended a single session. William also missed much of the Convention as he attended to his responsibilities in the Georgia Assembly but was present during the crucial final few sessions. There, he helped steer the fledgling document through its first big hurdle: passage by the Congress itself. He contributed critical votes at that time and also attended the state ratifying convention.


William Few served as one of Georgia’s first Senators from 1789 through 1793 and later became a federal judge for the Georgia circuit. In 1799, he resigned his judgeship and moved to New York City where he served in the legislature from 1802 -1805 and also served as alderman, inspector of prisons, and commissioner of U.S. loans. Late in his career, he became a director of Manhattan Bank and president of City Bank.


William Few died in New York in1828 at the age of 80. He had led an extraordinary life, spent many years in the service of his country, made his valuable contribution to the establishment of the Constitution, and is permanently laid to rest in Augusta, Georgia.

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Comment by JL Gawlik on October 31, 2011 at 1:40pm
Ditto on what Mary Jane stated. I have found it so fascinating that the Founders created such a incredible documents in their Charters of Liberty and Freedom, they truly knew what would work and what would fail. They actually were part of a miracle to have done this back in their day and time. Incredible men and women were the foundation of our country.
Comment by Mary Jane Travis on October 31, 2011 at 12:26pm
Thank you.  I become  more intrigued  by our founders and signers each time you write about one.  What  an incredible group of men to gather and to foresee the future. They stepped up and formed  the government that we want to save today.   I know we have the same type of brave leaders now  who are willing to  sacrifice their futures  to save the foundation  that led to the birth of our country.

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