GORHAM, Nathaniel

1738–1796

Biography

GORHAM, Nathaniel, (father of Benjamin Gorham), a Delegate from Massachusetts; born in Charlestown, Mass., May 27, 1738; attended the public schools; engaged in mercantile pursuits; member of the provincial legislature 1771-1775; delegate to the Provincial Congress in 1774 and 1775; member of the board of war 1778-1781; delegate to the State constitutional convention in 1779; served in the State senate in 1780 and 1781; Member of the Continental Congress in 1782, 1783, 1786, 1787, and 1789, and was its president from June 6, 1786, to February 2, 1787; delegate to the Federal Convention at Philadelphia in 1787 and signed the Constitution; delegate to the State constitutional convention which ratified the Federal Constitution in 1788; judge of the court of common pleas from July 1, 1785, until his resignation on May 31, 1796; interested in the purchase and settlement of lands in the Genesee Valley, N.Y.; died in Charlestown, Mass., June 11, 1796; interment in Phipps Street Cemetery.

View Record in the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

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External Research Collections

Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society Archives

Buffalo, NY
Papers: 1795, 1 item. A deed of land from Nathaniel Gorham to Oliver Phelps dated June 16, 1795. The deed was for land in Ontario County situated in the west end of Township 9, Range 5, and along the Genesee River, in Township 9, Range 7.
Papers: In the Western New York Land Record, 1786-1877, 0.2 linear foot. Other authors include Nathaniel Gorham.

Copley Press, Inc.
J. S. Copley Library

La Jolla, CA
Papers: 1787, 1 page. An appointment from Nathaniel Gorham for John Lowell as Justice of the Peace for fourteen Massachusetts counties.
Papers: In the George Washington Papers, 1788, 3 pages. A letter from George Washington to Nathaniel Gorham dating July 21, 1788.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: In the Samuel Holton Papers, ca. 1630-1843, 1.6 linear feet. Correspondents include Nathaniel Gorham. A finding aid is available in the Manuscript Reading Room and online. The papers are also available on microfilm.

Massachusetts Historical Society

Boston, MA
Papers: In the Caleb Davis Papers, ca. 1684-1826, 61 volumes. Other authors include Nathaniel Gorham.

The Morgan Library
Department of Literary and Historical Manuscripts

New York, NY
Papers: 1789, 1 item. A receipt signed by Nathaniel Gorham for his services as a Member of Congress and Convention.

New England Genealogical Society

Boston, MA
Papers: In the John Wingate Thornton Papers, 1694-1884, 2 linear feet. Persons represented include Nathaniel Gorham. A finding aid is available in the repository.

New York State Library
Manuscripts and Special Collections

Albany, NY
Papers: 1793, 2 items. Two letters from Nathaniel Gorham to James Wadsworth regarding the sale and management of Nathaniel Gorham's western New York lands. The other letter discusses a meeting with Oliver Phelps; the other letter discusses the sale of certain tracts of land.
Papers: In the Robert Morris Papers, 1779-1819, 14 items. Correspondents include Nathaniel Gorham.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Gorham, William F. A History of the Gorham Family. [Rockport, Maine]: Penobscot Press, 2002.

Thacher, Peter. A Sermon, Preached at Charlestown, June 19, 1796, and Occasioned by the Sudden Death of the Honourable Nathaniel Gorham, Esquire, aet. 59. Boston: Printed by Samuel Hall, 1796.

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