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CLYMER, George

1739–1813

Biography

CLYMER, George, a Delegate and a Representative from Pennsylvania; born in Philadelphia, Pa., March 16, 1739; engaged in mercantile pursuits in Philadelphia; captain of a volunteer company at the outbreak of hostilities with Great Britain and a member of the committee of safety; Member of the Continental Congress 1776-1777 and 1780-1782; a signer of the Declaration of Independence; member of the State house of representatives 1785-1788; delegate to the convention which framed the Federal Constitution in 1787 and signed it; elected as a Pro-Administration candidate to the First Congress (March 4, 1789-March 3, 1791); chairman, Committee on Elections (First Congress); was not a candidate for renomination in 1790; appointed collector of excise duties in 1791, but resigned after the Whisky Insurrection; one of the commissioners to negotiate a treaty with the Cherokees and the Creeks June 29, 1796; died at his home, "Sommerseat," Morrisville, Pa., January 23, 1813; interment in Friends Meeting House Burial Ground, Trenton, N.J.

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

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External Research Collections

American Philosophical Society Library

Philadelphia, PA
Papers: 1785-1848, 27 items. This collection contains legal papers, including deeds, patents, articles of agreement, and a power of attorney. There is also correspondence between George Clymer and John Reed to Samuel A. Law. A table of contents for the papers is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Fox Family Legal Papers, 1686-1881, approximately 200 items. Includes deeds to properties of many individuals, including George Clymer. A table of contents for the papers is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Frederick Smyth Papers, 1756-1816, 56 items. Subjects covered include George Clymer. A table of contents for the papers is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Wills of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence, 1790-1822, 11 items. Includes the will of George Clymer. An index for the papers is available in the repository.

Copley Press, Inc.
J. S. Copley Library

La Jolla, CA
Papers: 1776, 1 page. A letter from George Clymer to John Nixon and the Committee of Accounts written on April 4, 1776. In the letter, George Clymer asks them "to pay to Nicholas Hicks on Order One hundred pounds on account of work done at Fort Island by order of the Committee of Safety."
Papers: 1779, 2 pages. A letter from George Clymer to an unidentified recipient written on April 2, 1779. In the letter, George Clymer speaks disparagingly of the "Constitutionalists" and says that they will soon convince "...all Mankind that they have neither sense nor Virtue enough to govern a Hord of Tartars." He also writes that the Constitution is so "...shattered and battered by its Friends..."
Papers: 1791, 5 pages. A letter from George Clymer to General Hand written on May 30, 1791. In the letter, George Clymer writes about the system for collecting the new federal tax on whiskey and beginning of the IRS.

Haverford College
Quaker and Special Collections, Magill Library

Haverford, PA
Papers: In the Virginia McCall Autograph Collection, 1802-1907, 5 items. Includes a promissory note signed by George Clymer on December 10, 1802.

Historical Society of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA
Papers: In the Simon Gratz Papers, 1677-1910, 100 linear feet. Persons represented in the papers include George Clymer.
Papers: In the James Hamilton Papers, 1750-1899, 21 linear feet. Persons represented in the papers include George Clymer. An unpublished description and container list is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Samuel Powel Papers, ca. 1729-1791, 0.5 linear foot. Subjects covered include George Clymer. An inventory is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Read Family Papers, ca. 1810-1879, 175 items. Includes legal documents regarding the estate of George Clymer.

The John Work Garrett Library Evergreen House

Baltimore, MD
Papers: In the Signers Collection, 1770-1826, 60 items. Subjects covered include George Clymer.

Library of Congress
Miscellaneous Manuscripts Collection, Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: 1781-1793, 4 items. Topics covered in the correspondence include receipts, pay orders, and the whiskey tax rebellion.
Papers: In the Samuel Warren Abbott Papers, ca. 1861-1887, 1 volume. Correspondents include George Clymer.
Papers: In the Pennsylvania Whiskey Rebellion Collection, 1791-1796, 2 volumes and one oversize folder. Correspondents include George Clymer.
Papers: In the Read Family Papers, ca. 1568-1906, 2.2 linear feet. Correspondents include George Clymer.
Papers: In the Henry A. Willard II Collection, ca. 1743-1888, 0.8 linear foot. Persons represented include George Clymer. A finding aid is available in the repository.

New York Public Library
Rare Books and Manuscripts Division

New York, NY
Papers: In the Clymer-Meredith-Read Family Papers, ca. 1760-1850, 13.5 linear feet. Persons represented in the papers include George Clymer. A finding aid is available in the repository.

The Rosenbach Museum & Library

Philadelphia, PA
Papers: 1783, 1 item. A letter from George Clymer to Ebenezer Cowell written on May 24, 1783. In the letter, George Clymer writes that he has rights to three thousand acres in West Jersey and asks for Ebenezer Cowell's assistance as a surveyor in choosing a location.
Papers: 1792, 1 item. A letter from George Clymer to General Edward Hand written on December 28, 1792. In the letter, George Clymer requests an immediate summary of accounts so that he can make a report to the Treasury.
Papers: 1793, 1 item. A letter from George Clymer to William Rawle written on February 9, 1793. In the letter, George Clymer writes that the revenue collector of Westmoreland and Fayette counties, Benjamin Wells, has written three depositions related to the "violences in the western country" for his consideration.
Papers: 1806, 1 item. A letter from George Clymer to Jacob Bowman written on September 24, 1806. In the letter, George Clymer writes that he is awaiting a reply from William Meredith regarding the preparation of a deed.
Papers: In the A. S. W. Rosenbach Collection, 1876-1952, 56 items. Other authors include George Clymer.

Pennsylvania State Archives
Manuscript Groups

Harrisburg, PA
Papers: In the Mrs. James Lewis Hook Collection, 1752-1810, 22 items. Other authors include George Clymer. A finding aid is available in the repository.

Stanford University Libraries
Department of Special Collections Green Library

Stanford, CA
Papers: In the Elmer E. Robinson Americana Collection, 1765-1969, 1.75 linear feet. Subjects covered include George Clymer.

University of Pennsylvania
Special Collections, Van Pelt Library

Philadelphia, PA
Papers: In the James Mease Papers, 1803-1846, 12 items. Includes a letter from James Mease to George Clymer in 1807.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Brumbaugh, Thomas B. "The Pennsylvania Academy's Early Days: A Letter of George Clymer to Robert Fulton." Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography 92 (July 1968): 384-6.

[Dickinson, Wharton]. George Clymer The Signer. New York, Chicago, 1880.

Grundfest, Jerry. "George Clymer, Philadelphia Revolutionary, 1739-1813." Ph.D. diss., Columbia University, 1973.

Macfarlane, James Rieman. George Clymer, Signer of the Declaration of Independence. [Sewickley, Pa.: Sewickley Printing Shop], 1927.

Mohr, Walter H. "George Clymer." Pennsylvania History 5 (October 1935): 282-5.

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