The Religious Affiliation of
a Signer of the U.S. Constitution
John Rutledge is regarded as one of the Founding Fathers of the United States of America. He was one of the signers of the Constitution of the United States of America. He was a delegate from South Carolina.
John Rutledge was an Episcopalian.
Some sources list the religious affiliation of John Rutledge as "Church of England," which is also accurate, given that his father was an Anglican minister (i.e., a minister of the Church of England). But John Rutledge was born in the American colonies, where the Episcopal Church was the American province of the Anglican Communion. John Rutledge can correctly be identified as either an Anglican or an Episcopalian.
He was identified as an Episcopalian by: the Library of Congress and A Worthy Company: Brief Lives of the Framers of the United States Constitution by M. E. Bradford. (Source: Ian Dorion, "Table of the Religious Affiliations of American Founders", 1997).
From: Robert G. Ferris (editor), Signers of the Constitution: Historic Places Commemorating the Signing of the Constitution, published by the United States Department of the Interior, National Park Service: Washington, D.C. (revised edition 1976), pages 208-210:
Aristocratic lawyer-jurist Rutledge, a political moderate, headed the committee of detail and stood in the forefront of the delegates at Philadelphia [at the Constitutional Convention]. Other highlights of his public service included legislator and president of his State, Member of the Continental Congress, and short periods on the U.S. Supreme Bench.
John Rutledge, elder brother of Edard Rutledge, signer of the Declaration of Independence, was born into a large family at or near Charleston, S.C., in 1739. He received his early education from his father, an Irish immigrant and physician; an Anglican minister; and a tutor. After studying law at London's Middle Temple, in 1760, he was admitted to English practice. But, almost at once, he sailed back to Charleston to begin a fruitful legal career and to amass a fortune in plantations and slaves. Three years later, he married Elizabeth Grimke, who eventually bore him 10 children...
In 1761 Rutledge became politically active. That year, on behalf of Christ Church Parish, he was elected to the provincial assembly and held his seat until the War for Independence...
Rutledge died in 1800 at the age of 60 and was interred at St. Michael's Episcopal Church in Charleston.
Note that numerous sources and authoritative references have been consulted in order to ascertain the religious affiliation of the American Founding Fathers. Note that the excerpts and references mentioned on this page are not the only references used in order to identify this person's religious affiliation.
Portrait: from Robert G. Ferris (editor), Signers of the Constitution: Historic Places Commemorating the Signing of the Constitution, published by the United States Department of the Interior, National Park Service: Washington, D.C. (revised edition 1976).
Webpage created 19 November 2005. Last modified 29 November 2005.
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