John Francis Mercer

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For other people with the same name, see John Mercer (disambiguation).
John F. Mercer
John Francis Mercer.jpg
10th Governor of Maryland
In office
November 10, 1801 – November 13, 1803
Preceded by Benjamin Ogle
Succeeded by Robert Bowie
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Maryland's 2nd district
In office
March 4, 1793 – April 13, 1794
Preceded by William Hindman
Succeeded by Gabriel Duvall
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Maryland's 3rd district
In office
February 5, 1792 – March 3, 1793
Preceded by William Pinkney
Succeeded by Uriah Forrest
Personal details
Born (1759-05-17)May 17, 1759
Marlborough, Stafford County, Virginia
Died August 30, 1821(1821-08-30) (aged 62)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Resting place Cedar Park Estate, Galesville, Maryland
Nationality American
Political party Anti-Federalist (1782), Federalist (1801)
Spouse(s) Sophia Sprigg
Residence Anne Arundel County, Maryland
Alma mater College of William and Mary
Occupation Lawyer
Military service
Allegiance Continental Army
 United States Army
Rank US-O5 insignia.svg Lieutenant colonel
Unit 3rd Virginia Regiment
Virginia militia
Battles/wars American Revolutionary War
Battle of Brandywine  (WIA)

John Francis Mercer (May 17, 1759 – August 30, 1821) was an American lawyer, planter, and politician from Virginia and Maryland.


Born in 1759 in Marlborough, Stafford County, Virginia, to John Mercer and Ann Roy Mercer, he graduated from the College of William and Mary in 1775 and was a delegate for Virginia to the Continental Congress in 1783 and 1784. He married Sophia Sprigg February 3, 1785.[1]

During the American Revolutionary War, Mercer was commissioned a captain in the 3rd Virginia Regiment in the Continental Army. He was wounded at the Battle of Brandywine. In 1778 he became an aide-de-camp with the rank of major to General Charles Lee. He resigned from the army when Lee did, but reentered the war as a lieutenant colonel in the Virginia militia. He served briefly under Lafayette in Virginia and was present at the siege of Yorktown.

After the war, Mercer moved to Anne Arundel County, Maryland, and was a Maryland delegate to the Philadelphia Convention in 1787, but withdrew before signing the Constitution. He would represent Maryland in the United States House of Representatives from the second and third districts from 1792 to 1794, and served as the tenth Governor of Maryland from 1801 to 1803. Illness plagued Mercer in his later years, and went to Pennsylvania to seek medical attention. In August 1821 Mercer died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He is buried in Cedar Park, Anne Arundel County, Maryland.[2]

He was the brother of George Mercer and James Mercer.

Mercer and his wife had their portraits done by Robert Field.[3]


  1. ^ William and Mary College Quarterly Historical Magazine, XVII, College of William and Mary, July 1908, p. 90, retrieved 2008-11-30 
  2. ^ John Francis Mercer at Find a Grave
  3. ^ Harry Piers. Robert Field: Portraits

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
William Pinkney
U.S. Congressman from Maryland's 3rd District
Succeeded by
Uriah Forrest
Preceded by
William Hindman
U.S. Congressman from Maryland's 2nd District
Succeeded by
Gabriel Duvall
Political offices
Preceded by
Benjamin Ogle
Governor of Maryland
Succeeded by
Robert Bowie