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 John Hart

John Hart

Birth
Stonington, New London County, Connecticut, USA
Death 11 May 1779 (aged 64–65)
Hunterdon County, New Jersey, USA
Burial Hopewell, Mercer County, New Jersey, USA
Memorial ID 2731 · View Source
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Signer of the Declaration of Independence from New Jersey. Born in Stonington, Connecticut, he moved to the area near Hopewell, New Jersey, where he spent the majority of his life. In 1739, he bought a farm there and married his neighbor, Deborah Scudder. They would have 13 children, and with hard work, the family became well to do. He was called “Honest John” by his neighbors because of his integrity and fairness, and he served as a judge for several years. Hart served in the New Jersey Assembly from 1761 to 1771, and as speaker of the Assembly in 1776. He was an early supporter of the American cause and opposed to the Stamp Act. In June 1776, New Jersey recalled its delegates to the Second Continental Congress, and appointed new ones, including John Hart. Hart took his seat in Congress on July 1, 1776, and the next day, voted for independence at the age of 65. Soon afterwards, he returned to his farm in New Jersey. In late 1776, the British Army advanced near Hopewell, and John had just enough time to get his children to relatives, before he could escape himself. Hiding out in caves and sleeping out in the open, he refused the British offer of a pardon if he gave up the patriot cause, and after George Washington won the Battle of Princeton, New Jersey on January 3, 1777, he finally returned to his farm, to find his wife dead and the farm destroyed. He attempted to find his children, but was never able to gather all of them back together again. His health wrecked by his months spent out in the open winter as a fugitive, he died on May 11, 1780.

Bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 1 Jan 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 2731
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for John Hart (1714–11 May 1779), Find A Grave Memorial no. 2731, citing Hopewell Baptist Meeting House Cemetery, Hopewell, Mercer County, New Jersey, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .