George Clinton (vice president)

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George Clinton (July 26, 1739 – April 20, 1812) was an American soldier and politician, considered one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He was the first Governor of New York, and then the fourth Vice President of the United States, serving under Presidents Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.


Early life and participation in the Revolution

His political interests were inspired by his father, Charles Clinton, who was an English immigrant to Little Britain, New York and a member of the New York colonial assembly. George Clinton was the brother of General James Clinton and the uncle of New York's future governor, DeWitt Clinton.

At 18, he enlisted in the British Army to fight in the French and Indian War, eventually rising to the rank of lieutenant. He subsequently studied law, became clerk of the court of common pleas and served in the colonial assembly.

He was known for his hatred of Tories[1] and used seizure and sale of Tory estates to help keep taxes down. A supporter and friend of George Washington, he supplied food to the troops at Valley Forge, rode with Washington to the first Inauguration and gave an impressive dinner to celebrate it.

Political career

In 1759 he was appointed County Clerk for Ulster County, New York, a position he held for the next fifty-two years.[2] He was a member of the New York Provincial Assembly for Ulster County from 1768 to 1776. He became the first elected Governor of New York in 1777, and was re-elected five times, serving until 1795.

In 1783, at Dobbs Ferry, Clinton and Washington negotiated with General Sir Guy Carleton for the evacuation of the British troops from their remaining posts in the United States.

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