David Brearley

Burial Location Visited Constitution Signer Grave #
Trenton, New Jersey April 23, 2010 7th Visited


David Brearley's grave in Trenton,                                                             This tombstone commemorates
New Jersey. Brearley is one of two                                                            not only Brearley's life, but the
signatories of the Constitution that                                                            lives of his wife, Elizabeth, and
are buried in the city. The other is                                                             his son, David.
George Clymer.


We had no trouble finding the graveyard                                    After going through a maze of fences,
where Brearley's grave is located. The problem                           gates, and alleyways, we were able to
was getting into the graveyard. The gate to                                get to David Brearley's final resting place.
the premises was locked and surrounded by
a tall, pointy fence.

                                       *** Interesting Facts ***

* Even in the early days of the colonies' rebellion, David Brearley avidly demonstrated his anger toward the British. At one point, Brearley was arrested by the British and charged with high treason, though he was eventually freed by a group of his fellow colonists.

* David Brearley was a member of the militia during the American Revolution.

* Brearley stepped down from the army in 1779 to serve as the chief justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court. He held that title for ten years, at which point he was succeeded by James Kinsey, a New Jersey lawyer.

* After Brearley was replaced by Kinsey in 1789, he was appointed by President Washington to the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. He did not stay on the court for long, however, as he passed away the following year.

* An active freemason, David Brearley was the New Jersey Masonic Lodge's first grand master. At his funeral in 1790, he was buried with full masonic honors. In 1924, over 130 years after his death, his fellow freemasons placed another, more prominent marker over his grave. It is the longer one that can be seen in the photos above.

Spouse: Elizabeth Mullen Brearley (      -1777)
               Elizabeth Higbee Brearley (      -1832)

Last Words:

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