Henry Middleton, 2nd Pres. of the Cont. Congress

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Henry Middleton

Birthdate:
Birthplace: Charleston, South Carolina, United States
Death: Died in Charleston, South Carolina, United States
Place of Burial: Saint James Goose Creek Cemetery Goose Creek Berkeley County South Carolina, USA, Charleston, South Carolina, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Arthur Middleton and Sarah Amory Middleton
Husband of Mary Baker Middleton; Maria Henrietta Middleton and Mary Middleton
Father of William Middleton; Arthur Middleton, Signer of the "Declaration of Independence"; Henrietta Rutledge; Col. Thomas Middleton; Hester Drayton and 5 others
Brother of Hon. William Middleton of Crowfield; Hester Middleton and Thomas Middleton
Half brother of Thomas Middleton

Occupation: Honorable, President of First Continental Congress
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Henry Middleton, 2nd Pres. of the Cont. Congress

Henry Middleton (1717-1784)

President, First Continental Congress - Served October 22, 1774 to October 26, 1774

  • In 1741, Henry Middleton married Mary Williams, only daughter and heiress of John Williams, a wealthy landowner, Justice of the Peace and member of the Assembly. Mary's dowry included the house and plantation that he and Mary named Middleton Place. Here, rather than at The Oaks, they made their home.
  • Henry Middleton was one of the most influential political leaders of his time.
  • He held a number of high offices:
  • Speaker of the Commons,
  • Commissioner for Indian Affairs, and a
  • member of the Governor's Council until he resigned his seat in 1770 to become
  • a leader of the opposition to British policy.
  • He was chosen to represent South Carolina in the First Continental Congress and on October 22, 1774,
  • was elected its President in the absence of Peyton Randolph.
  • By this time, Henry was among the wealthiest landholders in South Carolina with more than 50,000 acres and approximately 800 slaves.
  • For the last twenty-three years of his life he lived at his earlier home, The Oaks, returning there after the death of his wife Mary in 1761. Henry twice remarried, but his five sons and seven daughters were all children of his first wife. He relinquished Middleton Place to Arthur, his eldest son and heir.

First tea planted: French botanist Francois Andre Michaux (1770-1855) planted tea at Middleton Barony (now known as Middleton Place) near Charleston.

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Henry Middleton (1717-1784)

painting by Benjamin West

Henry Middleton, an influential political leader, was Speaker of the Commons, Commissioner for Indian Affairs, and a member of the Governor's Council until he resigned his seat in 1770 to become a leader of the opposition to British policy. Henry was chosen to represent South Carolina in the First Continental Congress and on October 22, 1774, was elected its President.

By this time, Henry was among the wealthiest landholders in South Carolina with more than 50,000 acres and approximately 800 slaves. For the last twenty-three years of his life he lived at The Oaks, returning there after the death of his wife in 1761. Henry twice remarried, but his five sons and seven daughters were all children of his first wife. Middleton Place was relinquished to Arthur, his eldest son and heir.

-------------------------------------------------------------------- (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:)

Henry Middleton (1717– June 13, 1784) of South Carolina was the second President of the Continental Congress from October 22, 1774, until Peyton Randolph was able to resume his duties briefly beginning on May 10, 1775. His father was Acting South Carolina Governor (1725-1730) Arthur Middleton (1681-1737).

While a delegate to the Continental Congress, Middleton resigned in order to prepare for the coming war. He was succeeded by his son Arthur Middleton (1742-1787), who went on to sign the United States Declaration of Independence.

Arthur's son, also named Henry (1770-1846), had a long career in politics. He was Governor of South Carolina (1810-1812), U.S. Representative (1815-1819), and the Minister to Russia (1820-1830).

Several of Henry's other children married well:

Hester was married to S.C. Lt. Governor Charles Drayton {See below}-grandson of South Carolina Governor William Bull. {Federal Judge William Drayton, Sr. was father of Charles Drayton and Congressman William Drayton; the Drayton brothers were cousins of Congressman William Henry Drayton. W.H. Drayton father of US Navy Captain Percival Drayton and CS General Thomas Fenwick Drayton.

Mary Polly was married to Congressman Pierce Butler. Mary Butler was the daughter of Col. Thomas Middleton. She was Henry's cousin.

Henrietta was married to Governor Edward Rutledge.

Sarah was the first wife of Charles Cotesworth Pinckney. Charles Pinckney's brother Thomas Pinckney's son Thomas Pinckney Jr married Elizabeth Izard, a distant cousin of Congressman Ralph Izard. (Charles and Thomas Pinckney's sister Harriott was married to Daniel Horry, whose daughter married a son of South Carolina Governor John Rutledge. They were thus connected to the Grimké; Huger; Drayton; Laurens families of South Carolina and the Forten family of Philadelphia).

Thomas married Anne Manigault. Their daughter Esther married Ralph Stead Izard, a distant cousin of South Caroina Congressman Ralph Izard and Alice De Lancey. (Alice was a niece of James DeLancey; James DeLancey's sister Susannah was the wife of Sir Peter Warren (Admiral). James DeLancey's daughter Anne was a wife of loyalist Thomas Jones (historian)). Another daughter, Elizabeth Middleton, was married to Ralph DeLancey Izard, son of Congressman Ralph Izard.

(Note: Joseph, a brother of Anne Manigault, was first married to a daughter of Arthur Middleton and Mary Izard; by Joseph Manigault's second marriage to Charlotte Drayton he was the father of Confederate General Arthur Middleton Manigault (1824-1886), whose wife was a cousin 1st removed of Confederate General Benjamin Huger. Charlotte Drayton was the daughter of Charles Drayton and Hester Middleton {above}).

Further reading:

Klos, Stanley L. (2004). President Who? Forgotten Founders. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Evisum, Inc.. pp. 261. ISBN 0-9752627-5-0.

History of Middleton Place Plantation

BARBARA WALTERS (reporting): Middleton Plantation, South Carolina. Landscaped gardens, beautiful green lawns, reflecting ponds, a thousand year old oak trees and pines, camellias, azaleas, it’s hard to imagine any place in the world more beautiful. Let me tell you a little bit about this plantation. Middleton Plantation got the name from Henry Middleton, and he got the land through his marriage to Mary Williams in 1741. The land and an early house represented Mary’s dowry, not a bad dowry. Henry built a mansion on a rise above a bend in the Ashley River, later adding two wings, and he set about immediately constructing a formal, landscaped garden after the great gardens of Europe. When it was completed, it took ten years, it was called “the premier garden of the thirteen colonies.” Rice was grown in the surrounding waters, so a rice mill was necessary to process the crop.

The Middleton’s made their money in the 18th and 19th centuries from rice. Massive channels and dikes were dug out of inland swamps and water from the Ashley, and that water was diverted. Indigo was also grown here, as was cotton. In spite of their great wealth and stature under British rule, the Middleton’s became active revolutionaries. Henry Middleton’s son Arthur served in the defense of Charleston, and when the city fell to the British, Arthur was imprisoned. When he died, Arthur Middleton was buried in the gardens, and every year, his birthday is celebrated with musket firing and music by a fife and drum corps. Many generations later, descendents of the Middleton’s came back to this land and set about restoring it, that was in 1916, for what was left of the house was in decay and the gardens were overgrown. By the late 1920s, Middleton Place had been replenished, the job had been carefully authenticated, and what we see today is just about what Henry and Mary Middleton saw when they went for a stroll on a sunny day in the mid 18th century.

-------------------- http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=69996050

Continental Congressman. Second President of the First Continental Congress. He fought valiantly in the Cherokee Wars of 1760-1761 -------------------- Second President of the First Continental Congress

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Henry Middleton, 2nd Pres. of the Cont. Congress's Timeline

1717
1717
Charleston, South Carolina, United States
1741
January 1741
Age 24
South Carolina
1741
Age 24
1742
June 26, 1742
Age 25
Middleton Place, St. Andrew's Parish, Charleston, South Carolina
1745
1745
Age 28
1746
1746
Age 29
1750
November 15, 1750
Age 33
Charleston, SC
1753
July 26, 1753
Age 36
Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina
1754
September 15, 1754
Age 37
1756
July 5, 1756
Age 39
Charleston, SC, USA