Q:

Who are the Founding Fathers?

A:

Quick Answer

"The Founding Fathers" is a colloquialism that generally refers to the delegates to the United States Constitutional Convention in 1787. Some other individuals who did not attend the Constitutional Convention but who played significant roles in the founding of the United States may also be included, such as Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson.

Continue Reading
Who are the Founding Fathers?
Credit: DEA PICTURE LIBRARY De Agostini Picture Library Getty Images

Full Answer

All of the original 13 states sent delegates to the Constitutional Convention, with the exception of Rhode Island. These delegates are all considered to be Founding Fathers even if they did not sign the Constitution. The delegates by state were as follows:

Connecticut

  • William Samuel Johnson
  • Roger Sherman
  • Oliver Ellsworth

Delaware

  • George Read
  • Gunning Bedford Jr.
  • John Dickinson
  • Richard Bassett
  • Jacob Broom

Georgia

  • William Few
  • Abraham Baldwin
  • William Houston
  • William L. Pierce.

Maryland

  • James McHenry
  • Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer
  • Daniel Carroll
  • Luther Martin
  • John F. Mercer

Massachusetts

  • Nathaniel Gorham
  • Rufus King
  • Elbridge Gerry
  • Caleb Strong

New Hampshire

  • John Langdon
  • Nicholas Gilman

New Jersey

  • William Livingston
  • David Brearly
  • William Paterson
  • Jonathan Dayton
  • William C. Houston

New York

  • Alexander Hamilton
  • John Lansing Jr.
  • Robert Yates

North Carolina

  • William Blount
  • Richard Dobbs Spaight
  • Hugh Williamson
  • William R. Davie
  • Alexander Martin

Pennsylvania

  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Thomas Mifflin
  • Robert Morris
  • George Clymer
  • Thomas Fitzsimons
  • Jared Ingersoll
  • James Wilson
  • Gouverneur Morris

South Carolina

  • John Rutledge
  • Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
  • Charles Pinckney
  • Pierce Butler

Virginia

  • James Madison Jr.
  • George Washington
  • John Blair
  • George Mason
  • James McClurg
  • Edmund J. Randolph
  • George Wythe.

Other major figures of the time, such as wives and mothers of presidents, military leaders, writers and religious leaders, may also be included among the Founding Fathers, depending upon the source.

Learn more about US History

Related Questions

Explore