Gorham, Nathaniel

Gorham, Nathaniel (1738-1796) Signer of the Constitution: Nathaniel Gorham was born on May 27, 1738, in Charlestown, Massachusetts. He received a basic education, then began working as a merchant in his home town. At the beginning of the Revolutionary War, he became very involved in public affairs, and served in the colonial legislature from 1771 to 1775. He was a delegate to the Provincial Congress from 1774 to 1775, and a member of the Board of War from 1781 to its dissolution in 1781. In 1779, Gorham served in the Massachusetts constitutional convention,. From 1782 to 1783 and 1785 to 1787, he was a delegate to the Continental Congress, and was president of the Congress in June of 1786. After serving as a judge of the Court of the Common Pleas for several years, he became a high-ranking delegate to the 1787 Convention in Philadelphia. Washington asked Gorham to take his place as president of the body for three months. After signing the Constitution, he worked hard to promote its ratification in Massachusetts. In the 1786, he became involved in a land venture, which was unsuccessful by 1790. Gorham died in his native town of Charlestown, Massachusetts, on May 27, 1738.