Profession: American Revolutionary and Founding Father
Why Famous: Patrick Henry led the opposition to the Stamp Act 1765 and is best remembered for his "Give me liberty, or give me death!" speech.
Along with Samuel Adams and Thomas Paine, he is regarded as one of the most influential champions of Republicanism and an enthusiastic promoter of the American Revolution and its fight for independence.
A Founding Father, he served as the first and sixth post-colonial Governor of Virginia, from 1776 to 1779 and from 1784 to 1786.
After the Revolution, Henry was a leader of the anti-federalists in Virginia. He opposed the United States Constitution, fearing that it endangered the rights of the States as well as the freedoms of individuals; he helped gain adoption of the Bill of Rights.
By 1798 he supported President John Adams and the Federalists. He denounced passage of the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions as he feared the social unrest and widespread executions that had followed the increasing radicalism of the French Revolution.
- 1777-10-25 Governor of Virginia Patrick Henry (41) weds second wife Dorothea Dandridge
- 1765-05-29 Patrick Henry's historic speech against the Stamp Act, answering a cry of "Treason!" with, "If this be treason, make the most of it!"
- 1775-03-23 Patrick Henry proclaims "Give me liberty or give me death" in speech in favour of Virginian troops joining US Revolutionary war
- 1776-06-29 Virginia state constitution adopted and Patrick Henry made governor
- 1941-09-27 US launches its 1st Liberty ship, freighter SS Patrick Henry
- 1961-03-08 US nuclear submarine Patrick Henry arrives at Scottish naval base of Holy Loch from South Carolina in a record underseas journey of 66 days 22 hrs