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Never too late: Declaration signers being honored

Jul 3, 2011 8:15:00 PM - thestate.com
It's William Whipple's turn to be recognized.

The New Hampshire merchant is one of the lesser-known signers of the Declaration of Independence. This year, there are plans for Whipple and 11 others to be honored for their place in history with a small bronze plaque at their gravesites or homes, thanks to a group of descendants of the Founding Fathers.

Whipple, one of three men from New Hampshire who signed the famous document - the others were Josiah Bartlett and Matthew Thornton - had no direct descendants. His only child, a boy, died as an infant and is buried near him at the Old North Cemetery in Portsmouth. Whipple, who also commanded troops during the Revolutionary War and served as a state judge and legislator, died in 1785 at age 55.

It's about time he was honored, said Blaine Whipple in Portland, Ore., a distant relative who has researched and published several volumes on 15 generations of the Whipple family in America.

"He was one of the workhorses of the Continental Congress," Whipple said. "He's never been given the credits that he earned." Whipple was chairman of the marine, foreign relations and quartermaster committees and served on another committee that gathered intelligence on the British, he said.

USA, South Carolina: (Latest Stories)