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Edward Rutledge

Edward Rutledge (November 23, 1749- January 23, 1800), South Carolina statesman, was a signer of the Declaration of Independence and later governor of South Carolina.

Like his elder brother John Rutledge, Edward was born in Charleston. He studied law at Oxford University (Middle Temple), was admitted to the English bar, and returned to Charleston to practice. He married Henrietta Middleton (daughter of Henry Middleton), they had three children, and lived across the street from John.

Along with John, he represented South Carolina in the Continental Congress, where he was noted for his opposition to independence. Nevertheless, he signed for the sake of unanimity, becoming the youngest signer of the Declaration. He returned home in November of 1776 to enlist in the army, where he became a captain of artillery and participated in several battles.

He was sent back to Congress in 1779 to fill a vacancy (who?), returning again in the following year to help defend against the British invasion, but was captured in the fall of Charleston, and held prisoner until July 1781.

From 1782 to 1796 he served in the state assembly, known as an active member and an advocate for the prosecution of Loyalists. He was then in the state senate for two years, then was elected governor in 1798. However, he barely finished his one term before he died.