Charles Carroll was born in 1737 and died in 1832. He lived to be 95 years old and accomplished many things. He spanned three generations, from before the Revolution until the Nullification Crisis of 1832. As head of the Congressional Board of War and Ordinance, he worked closely with George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, and Benjamin Franklin. He was the Wealthiest American by far, with a personal fortune almost unimaginable for the time. He was the only Catholic to sign the Declaration of Independence, and last signer to die, at the extraordinary age of 95. At the outbreak of the Revolution he was by law banned from voting or holding public office. Within months, he singlehandedly ended decades of discrimination against Catholics, and made himself one of the more important leaders of Maryland’s independence movement.
Educated in European natural law tradition and possessing the Irish stubbornness of his ancestors, Carroll took on the anti Catholicism that was considered a permanent fixture of colonial life and converted it into a crusade against tyranny. Catapulted praccatacly overnight into leadership of the independence movement, he was elected to the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776. With his signature hardly dry on the declaration, he helped draft the Maryland state constitution, including the invention of an electoral college to select members of the states upper house. This became the model for the federal electoral college, an innovation that has been the instrument for ultimately deciding four presidential elections and still stands today. In 1827 he summarized his life by saying that “to obtain religious as well as civil liberty I entered zealously into the revolution.” the outcome of his work ...
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“Charles Carroll.” Charles Carroll. 6th ed. N.p.: n.p., n.d. History Reference Center.
Web. 24 Apr. 2014.
Danzer, Gerald A. The Americans. Evanston: McDougal Littell, 2007. Print.
Green, Carr L. “ A Place In The Carroll Dynasty.” A Place In The Carroll Dynasty. N.p.:
n.p., n.d. History Reference Center. Web. 23 Apr. 2014.
Historical Volume. New York: Oxford UP, 1999. Archives.org. Web. 7 May 2014.
Joan, Gundersen R. “Carroll.” Carroll. N.p.: n.p., n.d. World Book Online Reference
Center. Web. 21 Apr. 2014.
McDermott, Scott. Charles Carroll of Carrollton: Faithful Revolutionary. New York: Scepter, 2002. Print.
Perlee, Bill. Personal interview. 10 Feb. 2014.
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