George W. Clymer

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George W. Clymer

Also Known As: ""Signer""
Birthplace: Philadelphia, PA, USA
Death: Died in Morrisville, Greene, Pennsylvania, United States
Place of Burial: Trenton, NJ
Immediate Family:

Son of Christopher Clymer and Deborah Clymer
Husband of Rachel Clymer and Elizabeth Clymer
Father of George Clymer; Henry Clymer; Meredith Clymer; Margaret McCall; Ann Lewis and 5 others

Occupation: Signer of Declaration/Ind., Farmer
Managed by: Alissa Ann Smith
Last Updated:

About George W. Clymer

George Clymer (March 16, 1739 – January 24, 1813) was an American politician and founding father. He was one of the first Patriots to advocate complete independence from Britain. As a Pennsylvania representative, Clymer was, along with five others, a signatory of both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. He attended the Continental Congress, and served in political office until the end of his life. DAR A 023381.


Clymer was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in March 1739. Orphaned when only a year old, he was apprenticed to his maternal aunt and uncle, Hannah and William Coleman, to prepare to become a merchant. He was a patriot and leader in the demonstrations in Philadelphia resulting from the Tea Act and the Stamp Act. He became a member of the Philadelphia Committee of Safety in 1773, and was elected to the Continental Congress 1776-1780. He served ably on several committees during his first congressional term and was sent to inspect the northern army on behalf of Congress in the fall of 1776. When Congress fled Philadelphia in the face of Sir Henry Clinton's threatened occupation, Clymer stayed behind with George Walton and Robert Morris. Clymer’s business ventures during and after war served to increase his wealth. In 1779 and 1780 Clymer and his son Meredith engaged in a lucrative trade with St. Eustatius.

He resigned from Congress in 1777, and in 1780 was elected to a seat in the Pennsylvania Legislature. In 1782, he was sent on a tour of the southern states in a vain attempt to get the legislatures to pay up on subscriptions due to the central government. He was reelected to the Pennsylvania legislature in 1784, and represented his state at the Constitutional Convention in 1787. He was elected to the first U.S. Congress in 1789. Clymer shared the responsibility of being treasurer of the Continental Congress with Michael Hillegas, the first Treasurer of the United States.

He was the first president of the Philadelphia Bank, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and vice-president of the Philadelphia Agricultural Society. When Congress passed a bill imposing a duty on spirits distilled in the United States in 1791, Clymer was placed as head of the excise department, in the state of Pennsylvania. He was also one of the commissioners to negotiate a treaty with the Creek Indian confederacy at Coleraine, Georgia on June 29, 1796. He is considered the benefactor of Indiana Borough, as it was he who donated the property for a county seat in Indiana County, Pennsylvania.

Clymer died on January 24, 1813. He was buried at the Friends Burying Ground in Trenton, New Jersey. He married Elizabeth Meredith on March 22, 1765 and the couple had nine children, four of whom died in infancy. His oldest surviving son Henry (born 1767) married the Philadelphia socialite Mary Willing Clymer in 1794. John Meredith, Margaret, George, and Ann also survived to adulthood, though John Meredith was killed in the Whiskey Rebellion in 1787 at the age of 18.


USS George Clymer (APA-27) was named in his honor.

Clymer, Indiana County, Pennsylvania was named in his honor as was Clymer, Chautaqua County, New York. There is a George Clymer Elementary School in the School District of Philadelphia. This school has educated majority children of color following Clymer's legacy of rights for all people. David Clymer, the famous rock bassist and trumpet player, is one of his many decedents.

Clymer's home in Morrisville, Pennsylvania, known as Summerseat, still stands.

A signer of the Declaration of Independence

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George W. Clymer's Timeline

March 16, 1739
Philadelphia, PA, USA
July 31, 1767
Age 28
Philadelphia, PA, USA
Age 29
Age 32
Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, United States
Age 34
Age 35
Age 44
Age 45