James Wilson

Learn About James Wilson

James Wilson

James Wilson was born September 14, 1742 and died August 21, 1798. He was one of the founding fathers and a signatory of the United States Declaration Of Independence.

James Wilson

He served twice on Continental Congress where represented Pennsylvania and was a big force to adopt the U.S Constitution. A leading legal theorist, he was one of the six original justices appointed by George Washington to the Supreme Court of the United States.

History On James Wilson

Wilson published "Considerations on the Nature and Extent of the Legislative Authority of the British Parliament" in 1774.He argued Parliament had no authority to pass laws for the American colonies because the colonies had no representation in Parliament. Wilson also served from June 1776 on the Committee on Spies, along with John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, John Ruthledge, and Robert R. Livingston. On October 4, 1779, the Fort Wilson Riot began. After the British had abandoned Philadelphia, Wilson successfully defended at trial 23 people from property seizure and exile by the radical government of Pennsylvania. One of the most prominent lawyers of his time, Wilson is credited for being the most learned of the Framers Of The Constitution.

Supreme Court career and final years

Wilson got nominated by George Washington to be Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court on September 24, 1789, when the court was implemented under the Judiciary Act Of 1789. He was the first professor of law at College Of Philadelphia in 1790. In Wilson's final years they were marked by financial failures. He got pulled into heavy debts investing in land that became liabilities with the onset of the Panic of 1796-1797.

Wilson And Bad Times

When he was in debt he was briefly imprisoned in a debtors prison in Burlington, New Jersey.When his son paid the debt he fled to North Carolina to escape other creditors. He went to prison again,but continued his duties on the Federal judicial circuit.In 1798,he suffered a bout of malaria then died of a stroke at the age of 55, while he was visiting a friend.
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