On November 22, 1783, John Hanson, died in his home state of Maryland. Who is John Hanson?
Well, three of your Gormogons grew up and nominally call Maryland their home state so I found this tidbit to be of interest. Maryland is hardly mentioned during history classes covering the American Revolution. However, Mr. John Hanson of Maryland does hold a hisotrical relevant position.
John Hanson was the self-educated son of farmers in Charles County, Maryland, a county to the east of the Potomac river due south of Washington, D.C. which was founded in 1658. His family had lived in Maryland for three generations. John married Ms. Jane Contee, 16, in Maryland when he was 25. They had nine children, five of whom survived to adulthood – two died serving in the Continental Army, one of whom was killed in action at Fort Washington, New York, in November 1776.
John Hanson’s political career began in 1757 with his election to the Maryland Colonial Assembly. He returned to represent Charles County again from 1758-1763, 1765, 1766 and 1768-1769. When the colonies’ relationship with the British became strained, John Hanson took a seat in the revolutionary Annapolis Convention. This body took control of the Maryland colony from the British in 1774 and renamed itself the Assembly of Freemen in 1776. As an outspoken supporter of American independence, John Hanson pushed for Maryland’s decision to back the colonists laying siege to British-controlled Bostonafter the battles of Lexington and Concord.
His political career grew when he was named to be a delegate from Maryland to the Continental Congress in 1779. He was unanimously president of Congress from 1781 to 1782, during which time the Articles of Confederation were finally ratified. When these Articles were ratified on March 1, 1781, the Continental Congress became the “Congress of the Confederation” or the “United States in Congress Assembled.” So John Hanson, of Maryland, was the first president of that body and of the union or confederation of the 13 colonies. This is a bit of a misnomer but something to consider.
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