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Picture of Elbridge Gerry


5th Vice President (1813-1814), Signer of the Declaration of Independence (Massachusetts), Delegate to the Constitutional Convention (Massachusetts, did not sign)

Biographical Data
Religious Views
References, Links, & Further Reading

Education: Harvard

Occupation: Merchant

Political Affiliation: Federalist, Democratic-Republican

Religious Affiliation: Episcopalian

Summary of Religious Views:

Views on Religion & Politics:

Gerry was a strong supporter of the separation of church and state. He proposed a more strongly worded religion clause for the First Amendment than was finally adopted, and, while he was Governor of Massachusetts, successfully pushed for the passage of that state's Religious Freedoms Act.


"No religious doctrine shall be established by law." Gerry's proposed wording for the religion clause of the First Amendment.

References, Links, & Further Reading: Books, Articles, Links


Works by Elbridge Gerry

Ed. by Russel W. Knight, Elbridge Gerry's Letterbook: Paris, 1797-1798, 1966
Ed. by C. Harvey Gardiner, A Study in Dissent: The Warren--Gerry Correspondence, 1776-1792, 1968


James Trecothick Austin, The Life of Elbridge Gerry, with Contemporary Letters to the Close of the American Revolution, 1828-29; reprint, The Life Of Elbridge Gerry With Contemporary Letters
George Billias, Elbridge Gerry, Founding Father and Republican Statesman, McGraw-Hill, 1976
Robert Goodwin, Elbridge Gerry, Marblehead's Forgotten Son, JLK2 Publishing, 2012


Eugene Kramer, "The Public Career of Elbridge Gerry," Ph.D. dissertation, Ohio State Univ., 1955


Works by Elbridge Gerry

Elbridge Gerry's Objections (Letter to Massachusetts Legislature) alternative (TeachingAmericanHistory.org)
Letter Containing the Reasons of the Hon. Elbridge Gerry, Esq., for Not Signing the Federal Constitution (Online Library of Liberty)
Observations On the new Constitution, and on the Federal and State Conventions, By a Columbian Patriot (Online Library of Liberty)
Elbridge Gerry: Defense of Conduct in Constitutional Convention, Massachusetts Centinel (TeachingAmericanHistory.org)

Biographical Sites

GERRY, Elbridge, 1744-1814 (Biographical Directory of the US Congress)
Elbridge Gerry (1813-1814) (Vice Presidents of the United States -- U.S. Senate)
A Biography of Elbridge Gerry 1744-1814 (Hypertext on American History)
Elbridge Gerry (ushistory.org: Signers of the Declaration of Independence)
Elbridge Gerry (National Archives -- The Founding Fathers)
Elbridge Gerry (Colonial Hall)
Elbridge Gerry (Signers of the Declaration of Independence -- National Park Service)

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