Stephen Hopkins Photo

Stephen Hopkins

Death: Jul 13, 1785

Birthplace: Providence

Nationality: United States

Stephen Hopkins

Date of Death : Jul 13, 1785
Birth Place : Providence

Stephen Hopkins was a governor of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, a Chief Justice of the Rhode Island Supreme Court, and a signer of the Declaration of Independence. From a prominent Rhode Island family, Hopkins was a grandson of William Hopkins who served the colony for 40 years as Deputy, Assistant, Speaker of the House of Deputies, and Major. His great grandfather, Thomas Hopkins, was an original settler of Providence, sailing from England in 1635 with his first cousin, Benedict Arnold, who became the first governor of the Rhode Island colony under the Royal Charter of 1663. As a child Stephen Hopkins was a voracious reader, becoming a serious student of the sciences, mathematics, and literature. He became a surveyor and astronomer, and was involved in taking measurements during the 1769 transit of Venus across the sun. Hopkins began his public service at the early age of 23 as a justice of the peace in the newly established town of Scituate, Rhode Island. He soon became a justice of the Inferior Court of Common Pleas, while also serving at times as the Speaker of the House of Deputies and President of the Scituate Town Council.

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