About this Famous Person
3rd Governor of Maryland, signer of the United States Declaration of Independence
Source : Tim DOWLING
William Paca was born in Abingdon, Harford County, in the British colony of Maryland. He was the child of John Paca (c. 1712 – 1785), a wealthy planter in the area, and his wife Elizabeth Smith (?-c. 1766). He was the second son of the family, after his elder brother Aquila, and had five sisters. The brothers entered school at the Philadelphia Academy and Charity School in 1752, and the younger Paca went on to attend the The College of Philadelphia (now merged into and known as the University of Pennsylvania), graduating in 1759 with a bachelor of arts degree. He was also to receive a master of arts degree from the College in 1762, though this required no further study, only that Paca request it and be in good standing.
After graduating from college, Paca returned to Maryland, reading law in the colonial capital of Annapolis under the tutelage of a local lawyer named Stephen Bordley. By 1761, he was licensed to practice law, and in 1764 was admitted to the provincial bar, having stayed in Annapolis to establish his practice. Professional success was mingled with personal success, as the previous year he had courted Mary Chew, the daughter of a prominent Maryland planter, and they were married on May 26, 1763. They would go on to have three children, though only their son John Philemon survived into adulthood.
- Category American politician