Thomas Mifflin

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Thomas Mifflin (January 10, 1744 – January 20, 1800) was an American merchant and politician from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was a major general in the Continental Army during the American Revolution, a member of the Pennsylvania Provincial Assembly, a Continental Congressman from Pennsylvania, President of the Continental Congress, and a delegate to the Constitutional Convention of 1787. He served as Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, President of the Pennsylvania Supreme Executive Council and the first Governor of Pennsylvania.


Early life

Mifflin was born January 10, 1744 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, son of John Mifflin and Elizabeth Bagnall. He graduated from the College of Philadelphia (now the University of Pennsylvania) in 1760, and joined the mercantile business of William Biddle. After returning from a trip to Europe in 1765, he established a commercial business partnership with his brother, George Mifflin, and married his cousin, Sarah Morris, on March 4, 1765.[1] He was a member of the American Philosophical Society.

American Revolution

Early in the Revolutionary War, Mifflin left the Continental Congress to serve in the Continental Army. Although his family had been Quakers for four generations, he was expelled from the Religious Society of Friends because his involvement with a military force contradicted his faith's pacifistic nature.[2] He was commissioned as a major, then became George Washington's aide-de-camp and, on August 14, 1775 Washington appointed him to become the army's first Quartermaster General under order of Congress.[3] He was good at the job, but preferred to be on the front lines. His leadership in battle gained him promotions to colonel and then brigadier general. He asked to be relieved of the job of Quartermaster General, but was persuaded to resume those duties because Congress was having difficulty finding a replacement.

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