Virtual Museum of Art | Virtual Museum of History | Virtual Public Library | Virtual Science Center | Virtual Museum of Natural History | Virtual War Museum
   You are in: Museum of History >> Hall of USA >> Declaration of Independence >> William Whipple

The Seven Flags of the New Orleans Tri-Centennial

For More Information go to New Orleans 300th Birthday


William Whipple

Signer of the Declaration of Independence

WILLIAM WHIPPLE was born in Kittery Maine on January 14, 1730. He was the eldest son of William Whipple, a native of Ipswich, who was a brewer, but for a time he had engaged in a seafaring life. His mother was the daughter of Robert Cutts, a wealthy and distinguished ship-builder, who established himself at Kittery and at his death left her a handsome fortune. The education of young Whipple was limited to public school. On leaving school, Whipple, who had developed a love of the sea, set out on board a merchant cargo vessel. By the age of twenty-one he commanded a ship of his own, and for several years devoted himself to the merchant marine business. His voyages were chiefly confined to the West Indies and Africa, and he brought a large number of slaves to this country (during the Revolution he freed those that belonged to him). Whipple was very successful and he acquired a considerable fortune.

In 1759, he abandoned the sea entirely and entered into business with his brother Joseph in Portsmouth. Whipple married his cousin, Catherine Moffatt of Portsmouth (their only child died in infancy) and settled down as a merchant. From the start, Whipple sided with the colonies in the conflict with Great Britain. He was elected a delegate from New Hampshire to the Continental Congress, taking his seat in May 1775 and continued to be a member until the middle of September l799. In Congress he distinguished himself and by his perseverance and application, he received the respect of his peers, both in Congress and at home. He sat in prominence on the marine and commerce committees and he was worried about the self-interest of foreign powers that supported American independence.

Whipple was chosen to aid General George Washington with his military plans for the summer campaign. He commanded contingents of New Hampshire troops at Saratoga and he participated in General Sullivan's expedition to Rhode Island in 1778. It is said that General Whipple, on his way to join the army of General Gates at Saratoga, had with him his slave named Prince, whom he encouraged to fight bravely if they should be called into action. Prince then replied: ‘Sir, I have no inducement to fight, but if I had my liberty, I would endeavor to defend it to the last drop of my blood.' The story is that Whipple freed his slave on the spot.

Whipple resigned his military appointment on June 20, 1782. He was a member of the New Hampshire legislature from 1782 until his death in 1785 and was an associate justice of the superior court even though suffering from a bad heart. In the fall of 1785, while riding the court circuit, his heart problem worsened and he returned home. He was confined to his room, until the 28th day of November, when he died, in his 55th year.




WHIPPLE, William, signer of the Declaration of Independence, born in Kittery, Maine, 14 January, 1730; died in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, 28 November, 1785. His father, William, a native of Ipswich, Massachusetts, was bred as a maltster, but, removing to Kittery, engaged in a seafaring life for several years. The son was educated at a public school in his native town, and afterward became a sailor, having command of a vessel before he was twenty-one years of age. He engaged in the European, West India, and African trade, and brought large numbers of negro slaves to this country, but afterward, during the Revolution, liberated those that belonged to him. In 1759 he abandoned the sea entirely and entered into business in Portsmouth with his brother Joseph, which connection lasted till about two years previous to the Revolution. At an early period of the contest between the colonies and Great Britain he took a decided part in favor of the former. He was elected a delegate from New Hampshire to the Continental congress in 1775, taking his seat in May, was re-elected, 23 January, 1776, took his seat on 29 February following, and signed the Declaration of Independence in July. He was re-elected to congress in 1778, and declined to be chosen again, but was a member of the state assembly in 1780-'4. He was commissioned a brigadier-general in 1777, commanded a brigade of New Hampshire troops at the battles of Saratoga and Stillwater, and, after the surrender of Burgoyne, signed the articles of capitulation with Colonel James Wilkinson on behalf of General Horatio Gates. General Whipple was afterward selected as one of the officers under whose charge the British troops were conducted to their place of encampment on Winter hill, near Boston. In 1778 he participated in General Sullivan's expedition to Rhode Island, and he resigned his military appointment, 20 June, 1782. In 1780 he was appointed a commissioner of the board of admiralty, which post he declined. He was state superintendent of finances in 1782-'4, appointed judge of the supreme court, 20 June, 1782, and justice of the peace and quorum throughout the state in December, 1784, and acted in this capacity till his death.

Click Here to return to Rebels with of Vision

Source: Centennial Book of Signers

For a High-resolution version of the Stone Engraving  

For a High-resolution version of the Original Declaration of Independence

We invite you to read a transcription of the complete text of the Declaration as presented by the National Archives.



The article "The Declaration of Independence: A History," which provides a detailed account of the Declaration, from its drafting through its preservation today at the National Archives.  


Virtualology  welcomes the addition of web pages with historical documents and/or scholarly papers on this subject.  To submit a web link to this page  CLICK HERE.  Please be sure to include the above name, your name, address, and any information you deem appropriate with your submission.

Start your search on William Whipple.

The Congressional Evolution of the United States Henry Middleton

Unauthorized Site: This site and its contents are not affiliated, connected, associated with or authorized by the individual, family, friends, or trademarked entities utilizing any part or the subject's entire name. Any official or affiliated sites that are related to this subject will be hyper linked below upon submission and Evisum, Inc. review.

Copyright© 2000 by Evisum Inc.TM. All rights reserved.
Evisum Inc.TM Privacy Policy


About Us



Image Use

Please join us in our mission to incorporate The Congressional Evolution of the United States of America discovery-based curriculum into the classroom of every primary and secondary school in the United States of America by July 2, 2026, the nation’s 250th birthday. , the United States of America: We The People Click Here


Historic Documents

Articles of Association

Articles of Confederation 1775

Articles of Confederation

Article the First

Coin Act

Declaration of Independence

Declaration of Independence

Emancipation Proclamation

Gettysburg Address

Monroe Doctrine

Northwest Ordinance

No Taxation Without Representation

Thanksgiving Proclamations

Mayflower Compact

Treaty of Paris 1763

Treaty of Paris 1783

Treaty of Versailles

United Nations Charter

United States In Congress Assembled

US Bill of Rights

United States Constitution

US Continental Congress

US Constitution of 1777

US Constitution of 1787

Virginia Declaration of Rights


Historic Events

Battle of New Orleans

Battle of Yorktown

Cabinet Room

Civil Rights Movement

Federalist Papers

Fort Duquesne

Fort Necessity

Fort Pitt

French and Indian War

Jumonville Glen

Manhattan Project

Stamp Act Congress

Underground Railroad

US Hospitality

US Presidency

Vietnam War

War of 1812

West Virginia Statehood

Woman Suffrage

World War I

World War II


Is it Real?

Declaration of

Digital Authentication
Click Here


America’s Four Republics
The More or Less United States

Continental Congress
U.C. Presidents

Peyton Randolph

Henry Middleton

Peyton Randolph

John Hancock


Continental Congress
U.S. Presidents

John Hancock

Henry Laurens

John Jay

Samuel Huntington


Constitution of 1777
U.S. Presidents

Samuel Huntington

Samuel Johnston
Elected but declined the office

Thomas McKean

John Hanson

Elias Boudinot

Thomas Mifflin

Richard Henry Lee

John Hancock
Chairman David Ramsay]

Nathaniel Gorham

Arthur St. Clair

Cyrus Griffin


Constitution of 1787
U.S. Presidents

George Washington 

John Adams
Federalist Party

Thomas Jefferson
Republican* Party

James Madison 
Republican* Party

James Monroe
Republican* Party

John Quincy Adams
Republican* Party
Whig Party

Andrew Jackson
Republican* Party
Democratic Party

Martin Van Buren
Democratic Party

William H. Harrison
Whig Party

John Tyler
Whig Party

James K. Polk
Democratic Party

David Atchison**
Democratic Party

Zachary Taylor
Whig Party

Millard Fillmore
Whig Party

Franklin Pierce
Democratic Party

James Buchanan
Democratic Party

Abraham Lincoln 
Republican Party

Jefferson Davis***
Democratic Party

Andrew Johnson
Republican Party

Ulysses S. Grant 
Republican Party

Rutherford B. Hayes
Republican Party

James A. Garfield
Republican Party

Chester Arthur 
Republican Party

Grover Cleveland
Democratic Party

Benjamin Harrison
Republican Party

Grover Cleveland 
Democratic Party

William McKinley
Republican Party

Theodore Roosevelt
Republican Party

William H. Taft 
Republican Party

Woodrow Wilson
Democratic Party

Warren G. Harding 
Republican Party

Calvin Coolidge
Republican Party

Herbert C. Hoover
Republican Party

Franklin D. Roosevelt
Democratic Party

Harry S. Truman
Democratic Party

Dwight D. Eisenhower
Republican Party

John F. Kennedy
Democratic Party

Lyndon B. Johnson 
Democratic Party 

Richard M. Nixon 
Republican Party

Gerald R. Ford 
Republican Party

James Earl Carter, Jr. 
Democratic Party

Ronald Wilson Reagan 
Republican Party

George H. W. Bush
Republican Party 

William Jefferson Clinton
Democratic Party

George W. Bush 
Republican Party

Barack H. Obama
Democratic Party

Please Visit

Forgotten Founders
Norwich, CT

Annapolis Continental
Congress Society

U.S. Presidency
& Hospitality

© Stan Klos





Virtual Museum of Art | Virtual Museum of History | Virtual Public Library | Virtual Science Center | Virtual Museum of Natural History | Virtual War Museum