Peyton Randolph (c. 1721-1775)

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Biographical Sketch

Born as the third child of (Sir) John Randolph and (Lady) Susannah Beverly Randolph, Peyton Randolph attended William & Mary Grammar School c. 1739. He also was elected to the W&M Board of Visitors c. 1758. [1]. He became a barrister after studying law at Middle Temple in London, and was appointed Attorney General of Virginia in 1744. In 1746, he married Elizabeth Harrison, daughter of Benjamin Harrison IV and Ann Carter, and they had no issue. Randolph held numerous offices in Virginia including Attorney General, Speaker of the House of Burgesses, Grand Master of the Masonic Lodge and President of the Virginia Conventions. He was unanimously elected President of the first and second Continental Congress.

Randolph died of a stroke in Philadelphia on October 22, 1775. He was temporarily interred in Christ Church Cemetery, and was returned to Virginia about a year later by his nephew Edmund Randolph. Another funeral was held in Williamsburg, and he was laid to rest in the crypt underneath the chapel at the Wren Building, where he rests with his father, mother, wife, and youngest brother John Randolph. [2]

Materials in the Special Collections Research Center

Further Reading

  • "Peyton Randolph (c. 1721-1775) Colonial Williamsburg Foundation: The American Revolution. Accessed August 29, 2016.
  • "Peyton Randolph" Shaping the Constitution: Resources from the Library of Virginia and the Library of Congress. Education @ the Library of Virginia. Accessed August 29, 2016.


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