John Hart

Burial Location Visited DoI Signer Grave #
Hopewell, New Jersey April 23, 2010 17th Visited


This obelisk was placed in Hopewell's                                          On July 4th, 1776, John Hart was one of
First Baptist Church Cemetery in                                                 the many delegates that opted to adopt
honor of John Hart, a delegate to                                                the Declaration of Independence.
the Continental Congress.


As would be expected, John Hart's                                             Hart was sent to the Continental Congress
monument mentions how he was                                               to represent his native New Jersey in
a crusader for the freedom of the                                              1775.
13 colonies. This inscription states
that he passed away in 1780, but
he truly died in the previous year.

                                       *** Interesting Facts ***

* "...
a plain, honest, well meaning Jersey farmer, with but little education, but with good sense and virtue enough to pursue the true interests of his country." These words were used by Benjamin Rush to describe John Hart, one of the 56 men who wrote his name so that we may be free.

* For a ten year period, Hart served as a member of the Provincial Assembly of New Jersey. Following that body's dissolution in 1771, the statesman served New Jersey in many other ways, and he eventually joined the Continental Congress in June of 1776. Having both voted for independence and signed the document that declared it, Hart left Congress on August 30th.

* The British saw to it that Hart was punished for turning against the crown, though. In December of 1776, King George III's men stormed New Jersey, and John Hart was forced to flee. Though his estate had been damaged by the troops, he was able to return after forces under George Washington drove the soldiers out of the area.

* Additionally, "Honest John" was a member of the New Jersey Committee of Safety.

* In 1779, having served the colonies for nearly thirty years, John Hart passed away. He had been battling kidney stones for a long period of time, and was in constant pain.

Spouse: Deborah Scudder Hart (1712-1776)

Last Words:

* Unfortunately, the exact date of John Hart's birth has been lost in the annals of history. It is speculated that he was born between 1707 and 1713, but there is no evidence that pinpoints a precise date.
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