The Signers of the US Constitution

Information on the signers at the National Parks Service web site

The educational background of the Founding Fathers
was diverse. Some, Franklin for example, were largely
self-taught and had received scant formal training.
Others had obtained instruction from private tutors
or at academies. About half of the individuals had
attended or graduated from college, in the present
United States or abroad. Some men held advanced
and honorary degrees. All in all, the signers were a
well-educated group.

Most of them were in the prime of their lives during
the Convention, and as a whole they were relatively
youthful. The average age was about 45 years. The
youngest, Dayton, at 26, was one of three men in
their twenties, the others being Spaight and Charles
Pinckney. Eleven were in the thirties, 13 in the forties,
and 8 in the fifties. Jenifer, Livingston, and Sherman
were in the sixties, and Franklin was in his eighties.

For their era, the signers of the Constitution, like
those of the Declaration of Independence, were
remarkably long-lived. The average age at death
was almost 67. Johnson reached 92 years; and Few,
Franklin, Madison, and Williamson lived into their eighties.
Passing away in their eighth decade were 10 or 11
(because Fitzsimons was either 69 or 70 at the time of
his death); and in the sixties, 13 or 14. Seven lived into
the fifties, and three into the forties—two of the latter
(Hamilton and Spaight) dying as the result of duels. The
first to succumb, in 1790, was Franklin; the last, Madison
, in 1836.
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License