Continental Congress President John Hancock appoints James Clinton a brigadier general in 1776John Hancock Military Appointment Signed as president of the Continental Congress only weeks after the Declaration of Independence was signed. One partially-printed page, 12" x 9", Philadelphia, August 9, 1776, appointing James Clinton "a Brigadier General in the Army of the United Colonies raised for the defence of American Liberty, and for repelling every hostile Invasion thereof." Countersigned by Charles Thomson Jr. Hancock's signature is large and bold. All text is also bold. The age-toned document is fully mounted to paper stock, bearing evidence of separation at folds with tiny bits of paper loss thereat. The backing is affixed to mat with cello tape for an overall size of 15" x 12.5".
James Clinton (1736-1812) was a New York native and the brother of future New York Governor and U.S. Vice President George Clinton. Five months earlier, James had taken command as colonel of the 2nd New York Regiment. later, during the 1777 Saratoga Campaign, he successfully prevented British General Henry Clinton from going to the aid of General John Burgoyne. In 1781, his command was with General Washington's Continental Army during the successful siege of Yorktown. Clinton went on to obtain the rank of major general by the end of the war, but when this document was signed during the momentous year of 1776, Clinton's military career was only beginning.
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