Goldberg Coins and Collectibles

Sale 86

Lot 302

Williams, William. Williams, William (1731-1811) American merchant and politician; signer of the Declaration of Independence from Connecticut. Autograph document signed ("Wm Williams"), 1 page, 8 x 6 in., Hartford, May 14, 1776. A letter from a Connecticut Signer in the magic year of 1776, less than two months before the signing of the Declaration. "To the Comtte of Pay Table of ye Colony of Connecticut". Williams orders: " Please to draw on the Colony Treasury for the sum of Three hundred pounds in favor of Nathl Shaw Junr of New London, as he is Commissary for part of ye men stationed at N London to Provider of Materials, Foods, for part of the works at N London to be in…payment of those services, & to be accounted for on Settlement of his accounts & charge accordingly. By Order of the Comtee of Safety, Wm Williams Chr."

With an autograph endorsement signed by William Ledyard (1738-1781), also dated May 14, 1776. Ledyard was a Lieutenant in the Connecticut Militia and was in command of Fort Griswold when it fell to the British under Benedict Arnold in 1781. After refusing to surrender with his small force against a trained British force four times the size of his, the British finally stormed the fort and took 80 more lives, even though Ledyard offered his sword to the commander, Major Bromfield.

In 1776, Williams was elected to the Continental Congress to replace Oliver Wolcott, who, certain that the vote for the Declaration would be affirmative, had returned home for an overdue visit. Williams arrived too late to vote for Independence, but signed the engrossed Declaration. He was appointed a member of the committee to frame the Articles of Confederation and in 1787, he attended the Hartford convention, where Connecticut ratified the Federal Constitution.
Estimated Value $1,750 - 2,250.
R.M. Smythe & Co., May 11, 2000, lot 17.

Realized $4,320

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