Declaration Signer William Ellery Superb Signature
Fantastic William Ellery Signature on verso of a manuscript document. 6" x 2.25". Dated on verso "Audited April 1771", and signed on the verso by Ellery as "William Ellery". The page was inlaid to another sheet to a completed size of 8.25" x 3". Tiny hole along bottom edge, else bright with strong contrasting ink.
As the colonial disputes with England became more and more intense, Ellery helped lead a riotous march of Rhode Islanders though Providence in resistance to the Stamp Act in 1765, and again helped support efforts against the Intolerable Acts of 1767. The First Continental Congress, meeting in Philadelphia in the Fall of 1774, aroused admiration in Ellery for the stand they made in resisting British authority on matters internal to the Colonies. He felt strongly that the local bodies in each colony were quite capable of managing their own internal affairs without the intrusions of Royal interference from more than 3,000 miles away.
After the actual fighting at Lexington/Concord on 19 April 1775, and the assembly of the Second Continental Congress on 10 May, Ellery became extremely concerned that no pusillanimous approach to the British acts of violence, such as "accommodation" that a few delegates were espousing, would gain approval. Ellery announced, "You must exert yourself. To be ruled by Tories, when we may be ruled by Sons of Liberty" how debasing. There is liberty and fire enough, it only requires the application of the bellows. Blow, then, a blast that will shake this country." He let it be known that he would stand for office as a delegate, should a vacancy occur.
William Ellery was chosen to replace Mr. Ward of Rhode Island and attended the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia and presented his credentials on 16 May, 1776, and took his seat. He voted for the Resolution for Independence on 2 July, and the Declaration on 4 July 1776. On 10 July 1776, William Ellery wrote to his brother, Benjamin, including this sentence, "We have lived to see a Period which a few years ago no human forecast could have imagined – to see these Colonies shake off and declare themselves independent of a State which they once gloried to call Parent …"
Ellery was present to sign the engrossed copy of the Declaration of Independence on 2 August 1776 along with most of the other signers. This is what he wrote about this famous event: "I was determined to see how they all looked "as they signed what might be their death warrant I placed myself beside the Secretary Charles Thomson and eyed each closely as he affixed each name to the document. Undaunted resolution was displayed in every countenance."
This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.
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