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Rufus King is best known in history for the fact that he was a delegate from Massachusetts to the Continental Congress and a signer of the Constitution of the United States. He also ran from president in 1816.
Rufus King was born in what is now Maine but was then part of Massachusetts. His parents were relatively wealthy and locally important. His father was important enough and was enough of a supporter of the British government that the family was targeted by Patriots during the crisis over the Stamp Act. The attacks were stressful enough that they helped to cause the death of King's father. This is said to have instilled in King the ideas that later made him a Federalist. These were the ideas that mob rule was a dangerous thing and that a strong country needed to be governed by more level-headed and rational men.
King was further moved towards Federalist ideas by Shays's Rebellion. In the wake of that event, he was part of the Constitutional Convention in 1787. From then on, he remained important in Federalist circles, serving as ambassador to Great Britain, in the Senate, and as a candidate for vice president in two elections. King died in 1827 on Long Island, New York.
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