George Clymer (March 16, 1739 – January 24, 1813) was an American politician, a Republican, a Patriot and one of the Founding Fathers. He was one of the first Patriots to promote and support the idea of complete independence from the throne in Britain. He was also one of five individuals who were signatories of two important documents, the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution.
Clymer was born on March 16, 1740 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and became an orphan at the tender age of seven years old. His destiny was tapped out at that point, with him being apprenticed to his uncle to ready him for a career as a merchant. His uncle encouraged him to read and obtain a decent education, and to that end, he read whatever he could get a hold of. Clymer had what others referred to as a clear and original mind, and the business of being a merchant could not provide him with enough stimulation for him to remain engaged.
On March 22, 1765, George Clymer married Elizabeth Meredith. Together, George and Elizabeth had a total of nine children, four of those died as infants.
George Clymer became a leader in the demonstrations which arose in 1773 from the Tea Act which was regarding the sale of tea. The British Government levied a contribution from Americans with respect to tea, without their consent. A committee was formed where Clymer was the chair, which was opposed to the sale of tea that was subject to the levy. As a result, no tea was available for sale in Philadelphia in 1773. He also led demonstrations in Philadelphia surrounding the Stamp Act.
Clymer was elected to Continental Congress in 1776 and served on many committees during his term in congress. In December of 1776, congress adjourned to Baltimore, as the British army advanced towards Philadelphia. Clymer remained behind together with George Walton and Robert Morris as a committee, of sorts. The British made it a part of their mission to destroy George Clymer’s home in Chester County.
In 1777, Clymer resigned from Congress and won a seat in the Pennsylvania Legislature in a 1780 election. Clymer was sent on a southern usa tour to try and collect subscriptions due from legislatures payable to the central government. Clymer won a re-election in 1787 and attended the Constitutional Convention as a representative of his state in 1787. Clymer went on to become a co treasurer together with Michael Hillegas for the Continental Congress.
In 1791, Congress passed a bill which placed a duty on spirits that were domestically distilled. Clymer became head of the Pennsylvania Excise Department to oversee the collection of the duty. Clymer was one of the key players who negotiated a treaty together with the Creek Indian confederacy on June 29, 1796. George Clymer donated sufficient property to establish a county seat within Indiana Country.
George Clymer passed away on January 24, 1813 and is buried in Trenton, New Jersey at the Friends Burying Ground.