John Dickinson

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Dickinson, John,

1732–1808, American patriot and statesman, b. Talbot co., Md. After studying law in Philadelphia and in London at the Middle Temple, he developed a highly successful practice in Philadelphia. In 1760 he became speaker of the assembly of the Lower Counties (Delaware), and in 1762 he entered the Pennsylvania legislature. Dickinson led the conservative wing opposing Benjamin Franklin and defending the proprietary system. The Sugar Act and the Stamp ActStamp Act,
1765, revenue law passed by the British Parliament during the ministry of George Grenville. The first direct tax to be levied on the American colonies, it required that all newspapers, pamphlets, legal documents, commercial bills, advertisements, and other papers
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 led him to write a pamphlet (1765) in protest. As a member of the Stamp Act Congress he helped draw up the petitions to the king, but he opposed all violent resistance to the law. The passage of the Townshend ActsTownshend Acts,
1767, originated by Charles Townshend and passed by the English Parliament shortly after the repeal of the Stamp Act. They were designed to collect revenue from the colonists in America by putting customs duties on imports of glass, lead, paints, paper, and tea.
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 (1767) led to the colonial nonimportation agreements and the publication of Dickinson's famous Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, which appeared in the Pennsylvania Chronicle in 1767 and 1768. He pointed out that these laws were inconsistent with established English constitutional principles, but he favored nonimportation agreements and conciliation rather than revolt. Dickinson came to be regarded as the leader of the conservative group, which opposed not only British actions but also the ideas of such radicals as Samuel AdamsAdams, Samuel,
1722–1803, political leader in the American Revolution, signer of the Declaration of Independence, b. Boston, Mass.; second cousin of John Adams. An unsuccessful businessman, he became interested in politics and was a member (1765–74) and clerk
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. He was a delegate to the First Continental CongressContinental Congress,
1774–89, federal legislature of the Thirteen Colonies and later of the United States in the American Revolution and under the Articles of Confederation (see Confederation, Articles of).
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 and drew up a petition to the king. However, he still hoped for reconciliation even after the opening of hostilities, and he refused to sign the Declaration of Independence. He continued to be the leader of the conservative patriots in Pennsylvania and Delaware and held state posts. His draft formed the basis of the Articles of Confederation (see Confederation, Articles ofConfederation, Articles of,
in U.S. history, ratified in 1781 and superseded by the Constitution of the United States in 1789. The imperative need for unity among the new states created by the American Revolution and the necessity of defining the relative powers of the
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). In 1786 he presided over the Annapolis ConventionAnnapolis Convention,
1786, interstate convention called by Virginia to discuss a uniform regulation of commerce. It met at Annapolis, Md. With only 5 of the 13 states—Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia—represented, there could be no
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, and in the subsequent U.S. Constitutional Convention, Dickinson was a delegate from Delaware and a leading champion of the rights of the small states. He later wrote vigorously in support of the Constitution. Dickinson CollegeDickinson College,
at Carlisle, Pa.; coeducational; Methodist; founded 1773 as The Grammar School, chartered and opened as Dickinson College 1783. Chartered as a college primarily through the efforts of Benjamin Rush, it was named for John Dickinson.
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, established with his support when he was Pennsylvania's president (governor), is named after him.

Bibliography

See biographies by C. J. Stillé (1891, repr. 1967) and E. Wolf (2d ed. 1967); study by D. L. Jacobson (1965).

Dickinson, John

(1732–1808) statesman; born in Talbot County, Md. A prominent lawyer, with practices in both London and Philadelphia, he espoused the colonial cause, but worked for reconciliation with England. He was a member of the Stamp Act Congress (1765) and the First and Second Continental Congresses. He voted against and declined to sign the Declaration of Independence, but he then served in the American Revolutionary militia. As a member of the Constitutional Convention (1787) he supported ratification of the Constitution. His numerous political writings earned him the title of "Penman of the Revolution."
References in periodicals archive ?
John Dickenson was one of the leading pamphleteers of the revolution, writing many missives entitled Letters from a Pennsylvania Farmer.
The team, pictured with their trophy haul, were (from left): James Munt, John Dickenson, Marcus Senior, Alan Chappelow, Phillip Dickenson, John Woodhead and Brian Firth.
More relatives of Cora Earl JOHN Dickenson writes regarding the story in issue 82, page 28 about Bob Jamison and his mother recognising Cora Earl.
The family of the late John Dickenson wish to express their sincere thanks to all relatives, friends and colleagues for the kindness and sympathy shown to them during their recent bereavement, also for the Mass cards, cards, letters of condolence, floral tributes received and donations to the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) and the Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust (SDBTT).
Air Products is pleased to be working with Konarka, a global leader in OPV technology, on this project," said John Dickenson, senior business development manager at Air Products.
Hegedus worked with Fritz Walker, Frank Pepe, John Dickenson, and Renee Keller to develop novel epoxy-water copolymers.
His solicitor John Dickenson said: "My client is now considering the options open to him, including commencing proceedings to compel a decision to be made.
Venables' solicitor, John Dickenson, said: "In any child who is detained for a lengthy period of time then, subject to risk assessment, rehabilitation includes leaving the unit.
Last night Venables' solicitor John Dickenson refused to comment.
All donations in reference to John Dickenson please).
Finally to John Dickenson, calling the ship Hadra an icon for Teesside.
John Dickenson, managing director of Banks Developments, said: "We believe Terry will play an important part in the continuing expansion of our property portfolio.