About this Famous Person
31st Deputy Governor of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
Source : Tim DOWLING
The second son of William Ellery Sr. and Elizabeth Almy, William Ellery was born in Newport. He received his early education from his father, a merchant and Harvard College graduate. In 1747 William Ellery graduated from Harvard College where he had excelled in Greek and Latin. Ellery returned to Newport where he worked first as a merchant, next as a customs collector, and then as Clerk of the Rhode Island General Assembly. Ellery started practicing law in 1770 at the age of 43 and became active in the Rhode Island Sons of Liberty.
After Samuel Ward's death in 1776, Ellery replaced Ward in the Continental Congress. Ellery was among the fifty-six signers of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. Ellery also served as a judge of the Supreme Court of Rhode Island and by 1785 he had become an abolitionist. He was the first customs collector of the port of Newport under the Constitution, serving there until his death. Ellery was an active worshipper at the Second Congregational Church of Newport. After his death in 1820 at age 92, Ellery was buried in Common Burying Ground in Newport.
- Category American politician