How Much Do You Know About America's Famous Forefathers?

John Miller

Who are the "founding fathers" of the United States?

The founding fathers were the political leaders who guided the American Revolution and created the first United States government. They are often revered as some of the most important people in human history.

Who is regarded as the singular founding father of the country?

George Washington led the Continental Army to victory against bigger and better-equipped British forces. Then he became the country's first president. He is the "father" of the country.

Which of these founding fathers did NOT serve as president?

By the time the Revolution rolled around, Franklin was already getting up there in terms of age. He was very influential but never served as president.

What role did Thomas Paine have in the American Revolution?

Paine wrote "Common Sense," which was published in 1776. The pamphlet was full of political reasonings that stoked anti-British sentiments, swaying many colonists in favor of rebellion.

What bit of serious mischief did Samuel Adams help to organize?

Adams, whose picture is now emblazoned across millions of beer labels bearing his name, helped to organize the Boston Tea Party, in which angry colonists dumped British tea into the sea to protest unfair taxation. The "party" escalated tensions between the colonists and Britain.

How many terms did George Washington serve as president?

Washington was so popular that he was easily elected after two terms. He probably could have won a third, but wisely stepped aside, lest he become too king-like.

Which man served as president after George Washington left office?

John Adams was vice president under Washington, and once old George left office, Adams was elected to fill his (gigantic) shoes. Adams was known as a confrontational, weird dude, which is probably why he only lasted a single term.

James Madison gets much of the credit for which act?

Madison is often called the "father of the Constitution" because he authored many of that document's ideas. He was also Secretary of State under Thomas Jefferson.

Who wrote much of the first draft of the Declaration of Independence?

Thomas Jefferson was a brilliant man who lacked verbal skills. But armed with ink and paper, he was a force to be reckoned with. He wrote many of the most famous lines of the Declaration.

Who is famous for the words, "Give me liberty or give me death"?

Patrick Henry was a revolutionary who was more than willing to directly confront the British. With the words, "Give me liberty or give me death," he became an American icon.

Benjamin Franklin was a savvy politician. He was also known as _____.

Franklin had a keen mind and an insatiable curiosity. He spent years of his life exploring scientific concepts and inventing various gadgets, some of which became very important.

Which founding father actually provided legal defense to the British soldiers who killed colonists during the Boston Massacre?

John Adams was a principled man who wanted to see justice from the Boston Massacre trial. To the chagrin of some colonists, he helped prove the innocence of six of the British soldiers.

Which founding father grew his legend during a hard winter at Valley Forge?

As the winter of 1777-78 descended on the Continental Army, General Washington opted to hole up at Valley Forge, near Philadelphia. There, he and his men suffered through the brutal cold but emerged in the spring as a rejuvenated force -- one that was ready to take on the British once again.

Alexander Hamilton was the country's first ______.

Hamilton was incredibly powerful -- he as the first Secretary of the Treasury, and he helped mold the nation's financial system. He was a major proponent of strong central government.

Which founding father was married to a famous woman named Abigail, who would eventually become first lady?

John Adams was a perfectionist who saw flaws in everyone … and he managed to alienate everyone around him. However, his intelligent (and politically-influential) wife Abigail was renowned for her social grace and wisdom.

John Jay served as the country's first _____.

Jay was America's first Chief Justice. Later, he served as the governor of New York and helped to abolish slavery in the area.

Which founding father authorized the Louisiana Purchase, which vastly increased America's land holdings?

Thomas Jefferson authorized the Louisiana Purchase, which cost just $15 million. The result? More than 800,000 square miles of new land for America, stretching from the Gulf of Mexico into Canada.

Alexander Hamilton helped to found which American force?

Hamilton helped to establish the Revenue Cutter Service in 1790. It is often regarded as the birth of the Coast Guard.

Benjamin Franklin was responsible for which invention?

Franklin is famed for his experiments with lightning and electricity. He helped invent the first lightning rods, which went on to save countless structures from fires caused by lightning strikes.

Which of the following is NOT a person regarded as a founding father?

The list of founding fathers varies depending on the source. However, John Trumbull wasn't of them. He was an artist during the Revolutionary War period who captured some of the most eventful scenes of the era.

What did the founding fathers have in common?

America was established by the elite in colonial society. That is -- they were well-educated, white men who had adequate access to money.

Benjamin Franklin's portrait appears on which bit of U.S. currency?

It's all about the "Benjamins." Franklin's portrait is on the $100 bill.

Thomas Jefferson sneakily funded which major project?

Jefferson wanted to know all about the America's new lands west of the Mississippi River. He sneakily funded the Lewis and Clark expedition, which returned years later with all sorts of revelations about America's west.

George Washington had a famous ______.

Washington was mostly a wise man. But once his ire was unleashed, he had a temper for the ages, and he would rage against anyone who dared oppose him.

Who founded "The New York Post" newspaper?

Like the other founding fathers, Hamilton was a busy guy. Not only did he help to invent America's financial system, he founded the "Post" newspaper, which is still in publication today.

True or false, did George Washington die from a British sniper's bullet?

Washington may have died of medical malpractice. He had a terrible infection, so his doctor bled him several times … and may have taken far too much blood. Washington didn't recover from losing so much of his vital fluid.

Why did John Jay loathe his job as first Chief Justice of the United States?

As Chief Justice, Jay had to travel from court to court … all over the new country. The terrible roads made travel unpleasant, at best, and he soon grew to despise his position.

As Secretary of State, what was one of James Madison's major accomplishments?

Madison was Secretary of State under Thomas Jefferson. He helped coordinate and complete many of the details of the Louisiana Purchase, which completely altered America's geography.

In 1793, which founding father signed the Proclamation of Neutrality, which stated that America would remain out of other countries' violent conflicts?

So soon after America's formation, Washington wanted no part of other countries' conflicts. The Proclamation of Neutrality kept America on the sidelines and out of further military confrontations.

What was one of Benjamin Franklin's biggest contributions to the Revolutionary War effort?

Franklin was one of the men who pressed France to join America's war effort. In the end, the French did help the rebellion, an act that turned the tide of the war against the British.

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About This Quiz

The colonies groaned under Britain's stifling burden, yearning for political and economic freedom. A few men stepped forward to lead America's revolution, which altered the landscape of human history. How much do you know about the "the founding fathers" of the United States?

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