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Elias Boudinot 4th US President in Congress Assembled - A Stan Klos Biography

Elias Boudinot
4th President of the United States
in Congress Assembled
November 4, 1782 to November 3, 1783


BOUDINOT, Elias, philanthropist, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 2 May 1740; died in Burlington, New Jersey, 24 October 1821. His great-grandfather, Elias, was a French Huguenot, who fled to this country after the revocation of the edict of Nantes. After receiving a classical education, he studied law with Richard Stockton, and became eminent in his profession, practicing in New Jersey. He was devoted to the patriot cause, in 1777 appointed commissary-general of prisoners, and in the same year elected a delegate to congress from New Jersey, serving from 1778 till 1779, and again from 1781 till 1784.

He was elected President of The United States in Congress Assembled on 4 November 1782:

Journals of the United States in Congress Assembled, 1781-1789
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 1782

The following members attended, from

New Hampshire, Mr. John Taylor Gilman, Phillips White, Massachusetts, Mr. Samuel Osgood, Rhode Island, Mr. Jonathan Arnold, David Howell, Connecticut, Mr. Benjamin Huntington, Eliphalet Dyer, New York, Mr. James Duane, Ezra L'Hommedieu, New Jersey, Mr. Elias Boudinot, John Witherspoon, Pennsylvania, Mr. Thomas Smith, George Clymer, Henry Wynkoop, Delaware, Mr. Thomas McKean, Samuel Wharton, Maryland, Mr. John Hanson, Daniel Carroll, William Hemsley, Virginia, Mr. James Madison, Theodorick Bland, North Carolina, Mr. Abner Nash, Hugh Williamson, William Blount, South Carolina, Mr. John Rutledge, Ralph Izard, David Ramsay, John Lewis Gervais. Their credentials being read, the states proceeded to the election of a President; and the ballots being taken, the hon. Elias Boudinot was elected.

As President, Boudinot and Congress expended a great deal of time and consideration to ending the War with a favorable the Treaty of Peace with England. Thankfully John Jay persuaded Benjamin Franklin and John Adams to ignore Boundinot's instructions to include France in the negotiations of The Treaty of Paris. The violation of the instructions of congress displeased a part of that body but President Boudinot, once realizing the outcome, sided with John Jay. Mr. Madison, who had voted for the instruction, wrote: "In this business Jay has taken the lead, and proceeded to a length of which you can form little idea. Adams has followed with cordiality. Franklin has been dragged into it." Mr. Sparks, in his "Life of Franklin," contended that the violation of their instructions by the American commissioners, in concluding and signing their treaty without the concurrence of the French government, was "unjustifiable."

Spain also presented challenges to this emerging new nation and in June 1783 Boudinot signed this appointment as President of the United States in Congress Assembled:

The United States In Congress Assembled,

To Oliver Pollock Esquire Greeting:

We reposing special trust and confidence in your abilities and integrity have constituted and appointed, and by these presents do constitute and appoint you our commercial agent during our pleasure, at the city and port of Havannah, to manage the occasional concerns of Congress, to assist; the American traders with your advice, and to solicit their affairs with the Spanish Government, and to govern yourself according to the orders you may from time to time receive from the United States in Congress assembled. And that you may effectually execute the office to which you are appointed, we request the Governor, Judges and all other officers of his Catholic Majesty to afford you all countenance and assistance.

In Testimony whereof we have caused the Seal of the United States of America to be hereunto affixed. Witness his Excellency Elias Boudinot, President of the United States in Congress assembled, the second day of June in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty three, and of our Sovereignty and Independence the seventh.

In July 1783 while President Boudinot and Congress struggled with the Treaty, massive debt, a corrupt court system, and a host of other ills a now unthinkable blow to the new democracy struck a the seat of Power. Lancaster, Pennsylvania soldiers mutinied and marched for Philadelphia, for the stated purpose of compelling Congress to relinquish to their demands of back pay, food and desperately needed supplies. The mutineers were reinforced by the recruits in the barracks of Philadelphia, and, as they marched to the hall where Congress was in session, they numbered three hundred.

Congress called out the Pennsylvania militia but it failed to come to the rescue. The President of the United States and the Unicameral Congress were held hostage in Philadelphia’s famed Independence Hall. The mutineers demands were made in very dictatorial terms, that,

"unless their demand were com­plied with in twenty minutes, they would let in upon them the injured soldiery, the consequences of which they were to abide."

Word was immediately sent to General St. Clair and his presence requested. Arthur St. Clair hurried to the rescue and confronted the mutineers. St. Clair reported to Congress and after hearing a report of the facts by him, Congress directed him

" ... to endeavor to march the mutineers to their barracks, and to announce to them that Congress would enter into no deliberation with them; that they must return to Lancaster, and that there, and only there, they would be paid.'

After this, Congress appointed a committee to confer with the executive of Pennsylvania, and adjourned:

Saturday, June 21, 1783 – Journals of the Continental Congress: The mutinous soldiers presented themselves, drawn up in the street before the state-house, where Congress had assembled. The executive council of the state, sitting under the same roof, was called on for the proper interposition. President DICKINSON came in, and explained the difficulty, under actual circumstances, of bringing out the militia of the place for the suppression of the mutiny. He thought that, without some outrages on persons or property, the militia could not be relied on. General St. Clair, then in Philadelphia, was sent for, and desired to use his interposition, in order to prevail on the troops to return to the barracks. His report gave no encouragement.

In this posture of things, it was proposed by Mr. IZARD, that Congress should adjourn. It was proposed by Mr. HAMILTON, that General St. Clair, in concert with the executive council of the state, should take order for terminating the mutiny. Mr. REED moved, that the general should endeavor to withdraw the troops by assuring them of the disposition of Congress to do them justice. It was finally agreed, that Congress should remain till the usual hour of adjournment, but without taking any step in relation to the alleged grievances of the soldiers, or any other business whatever. In the mean time, the soldiers remained in their position, without offering any violence, individuals only, occasionally, uttering offensive words, and wantonly pointing their muskets to the windows of the hall of Congress. No danger from premeditated violence was apprehended, but it was observed that spirituous drink, from the tippling-houses adjoining, began to be liberally served out to the soldiers, and might lead to hasty excesses. None were committed, however, and, about three o'clock, the usual hour, Congress adjourned; the soldiers, though in some instances offering a mock obstruction, permitting the members to pass through their ranks. They soon afterwards retired themselves to the barracks.

Thanks to Arthur St. Clair the President of the United States Elias Boudinot and the Congressional members passed through the files of the mutineers, without being molested. The committee, with Alexander Hamilton as chairman, waited on the State Executive Council; but, still receiving no promise of protection by the Pennsylvania militia, on the 24th of June, advised an adjournment of the United States in Congress Assembled to Princeton, NJ.

President Elias Boudinot now in his home state of NJ and protected by their militia wasted no time in dealing harshly with the mutineers. On June 30th, the day after Congress's arrival in NJ, a resolution was passed ordering General Howe to march fifteen hundred troops to Philadelphia to disarm the mutineers and bring them to trial.

That Major General Howe be directed to march such part of the force under his command as he shall judge necessary to the State of Pennsylvania; and that the commanding officer in the said State he be instructed to apprehend and confine all such persons, belonging to the army, as there is reason to believe instigated the late mutiny; to disarm the remainder; to take, in conjunction with the civil authority, the proper measures to discover and secure all such persons as may have been instrumental therein; and in general to make full examination into all parts of the transaction, and when they have taken the proper steps to report to Congress

Before this force could reach Philadelphia, General St. Clair and the Executive Council had succeeded in quieting the disturbance without bloodshed. The principal leaders were arrested, obedience secured, and a trial was set.

The congressional resolution directing General Howe to move with the troops against the mutineers gave offense to General St. Clair. The General regarded it as an attempt to supersede his command and undermined his negotiations. Arthur St. Clair took it upon himself to write Congress a scathing letter which was answered by Elias Boudinot, President of the United States in Congress Assembled from Princeton NJ in the July 9, 1783 letter exhibited below.

Dear Sir,

I duly recd your favor of yesterday but conceiving that you had mistaken the Resolution of Congress, I showed it to Mr. Fitzsimmons and we have agreed not to present it to Congress, till we hear again from you. Congress were so careful to interfere one way or the other in the military etiquette, that we recommitted the Resolution to have every thing struck out that should look towards any determination as to the Command, and it was left so that the Commanding officer be him who it might, was to carry the Resolution into Execution; and it can bear no other Construction.

If on the second reading you choose your Letter should be read in Congress, it shall be done without delay …

Elias Boudinot, President

P. S., You may depend on Congress having been perfectly satisfied with your conduct.

Boudinot, doubtless, trusted St. Clair’s judgment and spared him the embarrassment of making his letter known to Congress. Peace once again reigned and as a result of the mutiny the accused ringleaders were sentenced to death, but were pardoned by Congress in September 1783. After the war General St. Clair returned to his neglected Ligonier estate finding the mill which he had opened for communal use to be in ruins.

Despite problems on many fronts President Boudinot steered Congress through the final intricacies of the Treaty of Paris which was finally ratified in January 1784 and signed by his successor President Thomas Mifflin.  The Chronology of Boudinot's presidency is as follows:

November 4 Convenes new Congress; elects Elias Boudinot president. November 7 Orders Washington to free Charles Asgill. November 8 Requests British officials to continue investigation of the death of Joshua Huddy. November 12 Renews appointment of Thomas Jefferson as peace commissioner. November 14 Debates report on Vermont's seizure of New York citizens. November 18 Appoints Thomas Barclay commissioner to settle the accounts of Continental officials abroad. November 19 Adopts new rules for carrying out the reorganization of the Continental Army. November 20 Debates Pennsylvania petitions on providing for the state's public creditors. November 21 Debates salaries of officials abroad. November 25-26 Debates propriety of exchanging Henry Laurens for Earl Cornwallis. November 27 Orders seizure of two Vermonters reported to be in correspondence with the enemy.  

December 3 Accepts resignation of secretary for foreign affairs. December 4 Grants John Paul Jones' request to serve with French navy. December 5 Censures Vermont officials; appoints appeals court judges. December 6  Directs superintendent of finance to exhort states to comply with fiscal quotas; appoints deputation to go to Rhode Island to secure ratification of impost amendment. December 11 Authorizes hiring out of prisoners of war. December 12  Receives Rhode Island explanation of rejection of impost amendment. December 13  David Howell acknowledges authorship of published letter violating congressional secrecy rules. December 16 Adopts response to Rhode Island's rejection of impost amendment. December 17 Reaffirms determination to send deputation to Rhode Island. December 21 Postpones resignation of secretary for foreign affairs; grants secretary leave of absence. December 24 Amends Post Office ordinance to extend franking privilege. December 25-26 Observes Christmas. December 31 Instructs peace commissioners to seek commercial reciprocity with Britain. 

1783-- January 1 & 2 Thanks France for military aid and naval protection. January 3 Records Trenton trial decree in Connecticut Pennsylvania boundary dispute (first settlement of interstate dispute under Articles of Confederation) January 6 Receives army petition on pay arrears; appoints committees to inquire into the management of the executive departments. January 7 Debates setting exchange rate for redeeming old Continental emissions. January 10 Learns that superintendent of finance has over drawn bills of exchange on "the known funds procured in Europe"; army deputation meets with grand committee on Continental Army grievances. January 13 Debates expediency of negotiating additional foreign loans. January 14 Acquiesces in Rhode Island delegates' request to share intelligence from abroad with state's officials; debates land valuation formula in grand committee. January 17 Thanks General Greene and the southern army; declares inexpediency of seeking additional foreign loans. January 21 Receives U.S.-Dutch treaty negotiated by John Adams. January 22 Ratifies Franco-American contract negotiated by Benjamin Franklin. January 23 Ratifies Dutch treaty. January 24 Orders investigation of abuses of flag of truce by the Amazon; rejects report recommending establishment of a library for Congress. January 25 Directs the superintendent of finance to pay the Continental Army. January 27-31 Debates proposals for funding the public debt. January 30 Rejects Pennsylvania proposal to pay interest due on Continental securities owned by its own citizens.  

February 4 Receives Vermont remonstrance against threatened Continental intervention. February 4-8 Debates proposals for funding the public debt and setting state quotas. February 10-14 Debates proposals for funding the public debt and setting state quotas. February 17 Adopts plan to appoint commissioners for estimating land values and setting state quotas. February 18 Orders superintendent of finance to estimate the public debt, and each executive department to report a comprehensive civil list. February 21 Exhorts states to maintain their representation in Congress. February 25-28 Debates proposals for commutation of Continental officers' half pay.  

March 4 Amends ordinance "for establishing courts for the trial of piracies." March 6-7 Receives report on funding the public debt. March 10 Debates commutation of Continental officers' half pay. March 11 Debates revenue proposals. March 12 Receives the preliminary treaty of peace. March 12-15 Reads treaty and foreign dispatches. March 17 Receives Washington's report on the army crisis at Newburgh. March 18 Debates report on the public credit. March 19 Debates proposal to censure ministers for ignoring negotiating instructions. March 20-21 Debates report on the public credit. March 22 Adopts resolve to commute Continental officers' half pay for life to full pay for five years. March 24 Recalls all Continental ships on cruise. March 27-28 Debates report on the public credit. March 29 Rejects proposal for increasing congressional oversight of the office of finance. March 31 Renews committee for overseeing the office of finance.

April 1 Recommends that states revise formula for setting Continental quotas; learns of call for an economic convention at Hartford; receives invitation to locate Continental capital in Kingston, N.Y. April 4 Orders suspension of enlistments in Continental Army; debates report on the public credit. April 7 Revises Continental quotas. April 11 Adopts cease-fire proclamation. April 15 Ratifies preliminary treaty of peace. April 17 Orders sale of Continental horses. April 18 Asks states for authority to levy revenue duties. April 23 Authorizes Washington to discharge Continental troops. April 24 Directs Washington to confer with Gen. Guy Carleton on the evacuation of New York. April 26 Adopts Address to the States on new revenue plan. April 28 Requests Robert Morris to continue as superintendent of finance until the reduction of the Continental Army. April 30 Rejects motion to hold debates in public.  

May 1 Directs secretary at war to negotiate cease-fire with hostile Indian nations; authorizes American ministers to negotiate treaty of commerce with Great Britain. May 2 Appeals to states for collection of taxes for payment of discharged troops; recommends that states adopt copyright laws for protection of authors. May 9 Asks states to convene assemblies to adopt fiscal recommendations. May 15 Revises rules to appoint committees by secret ballot. May 19-20 Debates treaty article on restitution of confiscated loyalist property. May 22 Instructs Francis Dana on negotiating treaty with Russia. May 26 Instructs American ministers on peace terms concerning evacuation of American posts and carrying off of American slaves; instructs Washington on furloughing Continental troops. May 29-30 Debates treaty articles on British debts and loyalist property.  

June 2 Appoints Oliver Pollock commercial agent to Cuba. June 4 Debates Virginia cession of western land claims; refers offers to locate the Continental capital at Kingston, N.Y., or Annapolis, Md., to the states (to be debated October 6). June 10 Receives report of the mutiny of a troop of Virginia dragoons. June 11 Directs furlough of Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia troops. June 12 Instructs American ministers on avoiding treaties of armed neutrality. June 13 Receives "mutinous memorial" from Continental Army sergeants. June 17 Commends the conduct of business in the office of finance. June 19 Receives notice of the mutiny of Continental troops at Carlisle; appoints committee to confer with Pennsylvania officials on the mutiny. June 20 Debates Virginia cession of western land claims. June 21 Confronts mutineers of the Pennsylvania Line; authorizes president to reconvene Congress at Trenton or Princeton, NJ. June 21 President Boudinot issues proclamation reconvening Congress at Princeton. June 30 Reconvenes at Princeton, NJ.  

July 1 Directs Gen. Robert Howe to suppress mutiny; adopts report explaining congressional response to the mutiny. July 2 Thanks New Jersey officials for their reception of Congress. July 9-11 Debates proposals for paying arrears due Continental troops. July 16 Orders recall of commissioners investigating British embarkations from New York; directs Secretary Thomson to maintain record of unrepresented states. July 23 Receives Philadelphia address inviting Congress' return. July 28 Returns noncommittal response to Philadelphia address; directs General Washington to attend Congress; relieves General Howe's detachment ordered to suppress Pennsylvania mutiny. July 29 Ratifies treaty of amity and commerce with Sweden. July 30 Directs superintendent of finance to publish regulations for receiving "Morris notes" in payment of taxes.  

August 1 Rejects motion to adjourn to Philadelphia. August 6 Authorizes distribution of "necessities" to Delaware Indians and friendly "northern nations." August 7 Orders preparation of "an equestrian statue of the Commander in Chief." August 9 Authorizes furloughing additional Continental troops and continuation of subsistence for Hazen's Canadian regiment. August 13-14 Debates motion for returning to Philadelphia. August 15 Receives proceedings of the court-martial of the Philadelphia mutineers. August 18 Directs superintendent of finance to report estimate of the Continental debt. August 26 Conducts audience with General Washington. August 28 Debates ordinance for prohibiting settlement of Indian lands.  

September 1 Receives Pennsylvania Assembly resolves for re turning to Philadelphia. September 10 Orders renewal of committees to oversee the executive departments. September 13 Adopts stipulations concerning the cession of Virginia's western land claims; confirms acquittal of leaders of the Philadelphia mutiny. September 16-19 Debates Massachusetts' call for retrenchment of Continental expenses. September 22 Adopts proclamation regulating the purchase of Indian lands. September 24 Adopts secret order authorizing Washington to discharge Continental troops "as he shall deem proper and expedient."  September 25 Reaffirms commitment to commutation of half pay claims; proclaims treaty with Sweden; debates report on federal jurisdiction over site of congressional residence. September 29 Lifts injunction of secrecy on most foreign dispatches. September 30 Promotes Continental officers not promoted since 1777.  

October 1 Debates instructions for ministers abroad. October 3 Debates Indian affairs. October 6-9 Debates location of the Continental capital. October 8 Receives Quaker petition for suppression of the slave trade. October 10 Resolves to leave Princeton; debates location of the capital. October 15 Adopts resolves regulating Indian affairs. October 17 Debates location of the capital. October 18 Adopts Thanksgiving proclamation. October 21 Adopts two capital locations-Congress to meet alternately "on the banks of the Delaware and Potomac." October 22 Orders distribution of the peace treaty to the states. October 23-24 Debates peacetime military arrangements. October 27-28 Fails to convene quorum. October 29 Adopts instructions for negotiating commercial treaties. October 30 Authorizes Pennsylvania to negotiate Indian lands purchase. October 31 Ratifies fiscal contract with France; holds audience with Dutch minister van Berckel.

After the Presidency Boudinot resumed the practice of law, but, after the adoption of the constitution, was elected to the 1st, 2d, and 3d congresses, serving from 4 March 1789, till 3 March 1795. He was appointed by Washington in 1795 to succeed Rittenhouse as director of the mint at Philadelphia, and held the office till July 1805, when he resigned, and passed the rest of his life at Burlington, New Jersey, devoted to the study of biblical literature. He had an ample fortune, and gave liberally.

He was a trustee of Princeton College, and in 1805 endowed it with a cabinet of natural history, valued at $3,000. In 1812 he was chosen a member of the American board of commissioners for foreign missions, to which he gave £100 in 1813. He assisted in founding the American Bible society in 1816, was its first president, and gave it $10,000. He was interested in attempts to educate the Indians, and when three Cherokee youth were brought to the foreign mission school in 1818, he allowed one of them to take his name. This boy became afterward a man of influence in his tribe, and was murdered on 10 June 1839, by Indians west of the Mississippi. Dr. Boudinot was also interested in the instruction of deaf-mutes, the education of young men for the ministry, and efforts for the relief of the poor.

He bequeathed his property to his only daughter, Mrs. Bradford, and to charitable uses. Among his bequests were one of $200 to buy spectacles for the aged poor, another of 13,000 acres of land to the mayor and corporation of Philadelphia, that the poor might be supplied with wood at low prices, and another of 3,000 acres to the Philadelphia hospital for the benefit of foreigners. Dr. Boudinot published "The Age-of Revelation," a reply to Paine (1790); an oration before the Society of the Cincinnati (1793); "Second Advent of the Messiah" (Trenton, 1815); and "Star in the West, or An Attempt to Discover the Long-lost Tribes of Israel" (1816), in which he concurs with James Adair in the opinion that the Indians are the lost tribes. He also wrote, in "The Evangelical Intelligencer" of 1806, an anonymous memoir of the Rev. William Tennent.

In closing one should note that the US Mint, in 1999, began to release a redesigned quarter under The 50 State Quarter Program. The US Mint’s website states:

The 50 State Quarters™ Program is 'changing' the 'state' of coin collecting. Approximately every 10 weeks, from 1999 to 2008, there will be a new state quarter to collect. Each quarter's reverse will celebrate one of the 50 states with a design honoring its unique history, traditions, and symbols. The quarters are released in the same order that the states joined the union.

On January 1, 1999 the United States Mint, despite our protests, unveiled its first George Washington State Quarter with the mark of Delaware on its reverse. The Delaware Quarter was release first because the US Mint An Act of Congress recognized Delaware as the first state due to its ratification of the US Constitution on December 7, 1787. The US Congress is mistaken. Delaware actually joined the Perpetual Union of the United States of America when it ratified the Articles of Confederation on 1 February 1779. Delaware was the 12th state to join the Union ten years before its ratification of the US Constitution.

It is also important to note that four score years later on July 4, 1861 President Abraham Lincoln used the Articles of Confederation's language against South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Virginia's attempt to secede from the United States. It was the unanimous "Perpetual Union" verbiage in the Articles that provided President Lincoln with the legal authority, not granted in the US Constitution, to Preserve the Union.

"The express plighting of faith by each and all of the original thirteen in the Articles of Confederation, two years later, that the Union shall be perpetual is most conclusive." - Abraham Lincoln's Address to Congress in Special Session 4 July 1861.

Moreover, it is incongruous that the US Mint was forced to serve as the official government agency to perpetuate the Delaware First State Myth (the first state was actually Virginia - 16 December 1777). The US Mint’s third Director, Elias Boudinot, was the 4th President of the United States in Congress Assembled under the Articles of Confederation. One would think that a Government Institution once headed by a US President under the Articles would have objected vehemently to Congress' error of the historical facts behind statehood.

Virginia, has the "bragging rights" to being the first state in the US "Perpetual Union" and Congress must correct this glaring error memorialized in the new Washington Quarter. Perhaps after the last state is honored under the current minting a new quarter could be started yearly honoring each of the forgotten Presidents. I am sure Washington wouldn't mind a 14 year rest on the head of the US quarter. The US Mint could start off with our first state Virginia on the verso and the First President Samuel Huntington on the head. Additionally, a special event at the US Mint would be most definitely in order when former President and Mint Director, Elias Boudinot of NJ, is rightfully honored as a temporary head of the familiar US Quarter with his home State of NJ on the verso.

The correct order of US State ratification and entrance into the Union is as follows:

US Statehood Order
Articles of Confederation - 1 to 13 States
US Constitution - 37 to 50 States

State

State Passes

Reported to

Delegates Sign

Ratification

Congress

1

Virginia

16 December 1777

25 June 1778

9 July 1778

2

South Carolina

5 February 1778

25 June 1778

9 July 1778

3

New York

6 February 1778

23 June 1778

9 July 1778

4

Rhode Island

16 February 1778

23 June 1778

9 July 1778

5

Georgia

26 February 1778

25 June 1778

9 July 1778

6

Connecticut

27 February 1778

23 June 1778

9 July 1778

7

New Hampshire

4 March 1778

23 June 1778

9 Jul 1778 - 8 Aug 1778

8

Pennsylvania

5 March 1778

25 June 1778

9 Jul 1778 - 22 Jul 1778

9

Massachusetts

10 March 1778

23 June 1778

9 July 1778

10

North Carolina

24 April 1778

25 June 1778

21 July 1778

11

New Jersey

20 November 1778

25-26 Nov. 1778

26 Nov 1778

12

Delaware

1 February 1779

16 February 1779

22 Feb 1779 - 5 May 1779

13

Maryland

2 February 1781

12 February 1781

1 March 1781

Sources: The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution: Vol. 1: Constitutional Documents and Records, 1776-1787, ed. Merrill Jensen, Madison, Wis.: State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1976; Encyclopedia of American History: Bicentennial Edition, ed. Richard Morris, New York; Harper & Row, 1976; Documents of American History, ed. Henry Steele Commanger, Englewood Cliffs, NJ; Prentice-Hall, 1973



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Elias Boudinot

BOUDINOT, Elias, philanthropist, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 2 May 1740; died in Burlington, New Jersey, 24 October 1821. His great-grandfather, Elias, was a French Huguenot, who fled to this country after the revocation of the edict of Nantes. After receiving a classical education, he studied law with Richard Stockton, and became eminent in his profession, practicing in New Jersey. He was devoted to the patriot cause, in 1777 appointed commissary-general of prisoners, and in the same year elected a delegate to congress from New Jersey, serving from 1778 till 1779, and again from 1781 till 1784. He was chosen president of congress on 4 November 1782, and in that capacity signed the treaty of peace with England. He then resumed the practice of law, but, after the adoption of the constitution, was elected to the 1st, 2d, and 3d congresses, serving from 4 March 1789, till 3 March 1795. He was appointed by Washington in 1795 to succeed Rittenhouse as director of the mint at Philadelphia, and held the office till July 1805, when he resigned, and passed the rest of his life at Burlington, New Jersey, devoted to the study of biblical literature. He had an ample fortune, and gave liberally. He was a trustee of Princeton College, and in 1805 endowed it with a cabinet of natural history, valued at $3,000. In 1812 he was chosen a member of the American board of commissioners for foreign missions, to which he gave £100 in 1813. He assisted in founding the American Bible society in 1816, was its first president, and gave it $10,000. He was interested in attempts to educate the Indians, and when three Cherokee youth were brought to the foreign mission school in 1818, he allowed one of them to take his name. This boy became afterward a man of influence in his tribe, and was murdered on 10 June 1839, by Indians west of the Mississippi. Dr. Boudinot was also interested in the instruction of deaf-mutes, the education of young men for the ministry, and efforts for the relief of the poor. He bequeathed his property to his only daughter, Mrs. Bradford, and to charitable uses. Among his bequests were one of $200 to buy spectacles for the aged poor, another of 13,000 acres of land to the mayor and corporation of Philadelphia, that the poor might be supplied with wood at low prices, and another of 3,000 acres to the Philadelphia hospital for the benefit of foreigners.

Dr. Boudinot published "The Age-of Revelation," a reply to Paine (1790); an oration before the Society of the Cincinnati (1793); "Second Advent of the Messiah" (Trenton, 1815); and "Star in the West, or An Attempt to Discover the Long-lost Tribes of Israel" (1816), in which he concurs with James Adair in the opinion that the Indians are the lost tribes. He also wrote, in "The Evangelical Intelligencer" of 1806, an anonymous memoir of the Rev. William Tennent, died D.

Edited Appletons Encyclopedia, Copyright © 2001 VirtualologyTM

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Republican* Party

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Republican* Party

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Republican* Party

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Republican* Party
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Republican* Party
Democratic Party


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Democratic Party

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Whig Party

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Whig Party

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Democratic Party

David Atchison**
Democratic Party

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Whig Party

Millard Fillmore
Whig Party

Franklin Pierce
Democratic Party

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Democratic Party


Abraham Lincoln 
Republican Party

Jefferson Davis***
Democratic Party

Andrew Johnson
Republican Party

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Republican Party

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Republican Party

James A. Garfield
Republican Party

Chester Arthur 
Republican Party

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Democratic Party

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Republican Party

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Democratic Party

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Republican Party

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Republican Party

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Republican Party

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Democratic Party

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Republican Party

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Republican Party

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Republican Party

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Democratic Party

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Democratic Party

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Republican Party

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Democratic Party

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Democratic Party 

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Republican Party

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Republican Party

James Earl Carter, Jr. 
Democratic Party

Ronald Wilson Reagan 
Republican Party

George H. W. Bush
Republican Party 

William Jefferson Clinton
Democratic Party

George W. Bush 
Republican Party

Barack H. Obama
Democratic Party

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