Skip to main content

Paca, William

Paca, William

PACA, WILLIAM. (1740–1799). Signer, governor of Maryland, jurist. Maryland. Born near Abingdon, Maryland, on 31 October 1740, Paca graduated from Philadelphia College in 1759, entered the Middle Temple in 1760, and was admitted to the bar in Annapolis the following year. In 1765 he and Samuel Chase organized the Anne Arundel County Sons of Liberty in opposition to the Stamp Act. He was in the Maryland legislature from 1771 to 1774, when he became a member of the Committee of Correspondence and a delegate to the first Continental Congress. After his state removed restrictions from its delegates in June 1776, Paca voted for independence and became a signer of the Declaration of Independence. He remained a delegate to the Continental Congress though 1777, helped frame the Maryland constitution in August 1776, and served as state senator from 1777 to 1779. In 1778 he became chief judge of the Maryland General Court. Two years later, Congress made him chief justice of the court of appeals in admiralty and prize cases. In November 1782 he was elected governor. Twice re-elected, he served until 26 November 1785. During this period he took a particular interest in veterans' affairs. He finally voted for the Constitution as submitted to the Maryland Convention of 1788, although he was far from satisfied with the document and had proposed 28 amendments. Washington appointed Paca as a federal district judge in 1789, and he held this post until his death on 13 October 1799.

SEE ALSO Sons of Liberty.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Stiverson, Gregory A., and Phebe R. Jacobsen. William Paca, A Biography. Baltimore, Md.: Maryland Historical Society, 1976.

                              revised by Michael Bellesiles

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Paca, William." Encyclopedia of the American Revolution: Library of Military History. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 May. 2019 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Paca, William." Encyclopedia of the American Revolution: Library of Military History. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 23, 2019). https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/paca-william

"Paca, William." Encyclopedia of the American Revolution: Library of Military History. . Retrieved May 23, 2019 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/paca-william

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.