Death Of Roger Sherman

US #1693 pictures Sherman at the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Click image to order.

Roger Sherman, the only man in US history to sign America’s four most important documents; the Articles of Association, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution, died on July 23, 1793.

Sherman was born on April 19, 1721, in Newton, Massachusetts. With few educational opportunities available to him, Sherman read every spare minute – and often had a book open at his workbench in his father’s shoe repair shop.

After his father died, he moved to New Milford, Connecticut and with his brother, opened the town’s first store.  Sherman first held an official office in 1745 when he was made surveyor of New Haven County.  He was also made the town clerk of New Milford and produced a popular Almanac there each year from 1750 to 1761.

Sherman was accepted to the Bar in 1754 and elected to the General Assembly the following year.  He went on to serve as a justice of the peace and justice of the Superior Court of Connecticut.  By the time he was 40, Sherman established himself as a prominent lawyer and politician. 

US #1691-94 – Silk Cachet First Day Cover. Click image to order.

When the Revolutionary War broke out, Sherman was made commissary to the Connecticut Troops.  He was then elected to the Continental Congress in 1774.  Sherman helped create the Articles of Association, a precursor to the Declaration of Independence which established a trade boycott with Great Britain. Well-respected among his peers for his honesty and integrity, Sherman was also selected to help create the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation.

Item #126113 – Commemorative cover marking Sherman’s 262nd birthday. Click image to order.

At the Constitutional Convention, Sherman was noted for his impassioned support of a strong federal government and the rights of smaller states. With 138 speeches to the convention, Sherman was by far one its most vocal members. Fisher Ames once said that in cases of uncertainty he looked at Roger Sherman, knowing that “if I vote with him I shall vote right.”

Item #97429 honors the anniversary of Sherman proposing gold and silver tender. Click image to order.

Among Sherman’s notable contributions was the inclusion “or to the people” in the 10th Amendment to the Constitution and the use of the cent in America’s financial system. Sherman died in his sleep on July 23, 1793.

Item #96215 – Commemorative cover marking Sherman’s 257th birthday.  Click image to order.

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  1. Sherman clearly was a significant contributor in the formation of our country and one of the Founding Fathers, but he apparently left few writings for the history books, so I had never heard of him. Thank you for his story.

  2. Very well written piece. I didn’t know much about Roger Sherman and now I feel pretty knowledgeable about him and his roll in contributing to early America.

  3. I also had not heard of Sherman, but he was a true American. Thank you Mystic for reminding us of his deeds.

  4. One minor quibble with the article. It states that “When the Revolutionary War broke out, Sherman was made commissary to the Connecticut Troops. He was then elected to the Continental Congress in 1774.” The former began at Lexington in 1775, not 1774. The Continental Congress did, indeed, first meet in 1774 before the war commenced.

  5. As state chaplain of the Illinois Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, I was honored recently with the Roger Sherman award for service to our state chapter. I must confess that I was not aware of all his contributions. Thank you for enlightening me.

  6. If I ever play the game of trivial pursuit I just might impress the others with my knowing of Roger Sherman as the only signer of all 4 important historical documents!! Thanks for the info.

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