John  Hancock III

John Hancock III (1737 - 1793)

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Governor John Hancock III
Born in Braintree (now Quincy), Province of Massachusetts Baymap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married (to ) in Thaddeus Burr Mansion in Fairfield, Connecticutmap
Died in Hancock Manor, Boston, Massachusettsmap
Profile last modified | Created 13 Nov 2008
This page has been accessed 82,622 times.

Categories: Sons of Liberty, American Revolution | Signers of the United States Declaration of Independence | Signers of the Articles of Confederation | President of the Continental Congress | Massachusetts Governors | Granary Burying Ground, Boston, Massachusetts | Namesakes US Counties | American Notables | Notables | American Founding Fathers.

John Hancock III is notable.
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1776 Liberty Bell
Event years 1773-1789.
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Preceded by
The Massachusetts Provincial Congress and new office created
October 25, 1780

2nd Governor
James Bowdoin
John Hancock
1st Governor
of Massachusetts

Mass. Governor
3rd Governor
Succeeded by
Acting Governor
Thomas Cushing

4th Governor
Samuel Adams
Preceded by
3rd President
Peyton Randolph
John Hancock III
4th President
of the Continental Congress
24 May 1775 - 1 Nov 1777
Succeeded by
5th President
Henry Laurens
Preceded by
12th President
Richard Henry Lee
John Hancock III
13th President
of the Continental Congress
23 Nov 1785 - 29 May 1786
Succeeded by
14th President
Nathaniel Gorham



U.S. Continental Congress President
This person was a President of the US Continental Congress
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1st Signer of the Declaration of Independence.

John Hancock (1737-1793), orphaned as a boy, was adopted by a rich uncle who had no children of his own. He was educated at Boston Latin School and Harvard University. Just ten years after graduating from college, he inherited his uncle's very lucrative business and became the richest man in America at the time.

The influence of being a workingman, and then one of means may be what made Hancock so in touch with the people. He despised blind authority and those beliefs lead him to use his contacts and resources in the aid of the independence of the colonies. He spoke out strongly regarding British Rule and was often engaged revolutionary politics at first as a financier and later a outspoken public critic of British rule.

On March 5, 1774, the fourth anniversary of the Boston Massacre, he gave a speech strongly condemning the British. In the same year, he was elected president of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress.

On May 24, 1775, he was elected President of the Second Continental Congress. In August of the same year, he married Dorothy Quincy.

Hancock is best remembered for his large, flamboyant signature on the Declaration of Independence, so much so that the word “John Hancock” is synonymous with “signature”.

Because of the popularity of the Hancock name, many people claim to be direct descendants. However, Mr. Hancock and his wife had two children neither of whom lived to see their teenage years. Lydia Henchman Hancock died an infant and John George Washington Hancock died at age 9, fell through the ice while skating in a pond in Massachusetts.

John Hancock was son of Rev. John Hancock of Braintree and Mary (Hawke )Thaxter of Hingham. After his father died in 1744 he lived with an uncle and aunt, Thomas Hancock and Lydia (Henchman) Hancock.'


  • Ten US states have counties named in John Hancock's honor. They are: Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Ohio, Tennessee, and West Virginia.



  • Thanks to Raymond Nichols for starting this profile. Click the Changes tab for the details of contributions by Raymond and others.

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It may be possible to confirm family relationships with John by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with John:

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Images: 3
John Hancock
John Hancock

Signing the Declaration of Independence
Signing the Declaration of Independence


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On 9 Mar 2015 at 21:28 GMT Cathryn (Hallett) Hondros wrote:

On 30 Oct 2013 at 22:18 GMT Ray Nichols R-CTS1751 wrote:

John is my 15th cousin 7 times removed.

On 7 Mar 2011 at 20:53 GMT Virginia Hancock wrote:

did john hancock have no siblings? member's of my father's family claim to have traced our family back to him, so i thought for most of my teen's and 20's to have been a descendant of his. i've since learned they were wrong, so the info has gotten skewed somewhere. would love to find out

John is 13 degrees from Charles Darwin, 13 degrees from Amelia Earhart, 15 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II Windsor and 19 degrees from Gilly Wood on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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