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Honorable John Rutledge


John Rutledge born in 1739, in Charleston, South Carolina. He served as a Member of the South Carolina Commons House of Assembly from 1761–1775. He represented the colony of South Carolina at the Stamp Act Congress in 1765 and also served as a Delegate to the First and Second Continental Congresses, later becoming one of the drafters of the South Carolina Constitution of 1776. He was elected President (governor) of South Carolina in March 1776, but resigned as President of South Carolina in March 1778 to protest the adoption of the South Carolina Constitution of 1778. He was elected Governor of South Carolina under the 1778 South Carolina Constitution in February 1779 and served until 1782. He served in the Continental Congress from 1782–1783. He was then appointed to the South Carolina Court of Chancery. He was also a leader in the South Carolina state legislature in 1780s and was selected as one of South Carolina’s delegates to the U.S. Constitutional Convention in 1787. He served as one of the first justices of the United States Supreme Court from 1789–1791, from which he resigned to become Chief Justice of South Carolina. He served as Chief Justice until 1795.

Rutledge studied law with his uncle Andrew Rutledge and with James Parsons in Charleston before attending the Middle Temple in London. He was admitted to the South Carolina Bar in 1761.

Located in the Legal History Room, 250.

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