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Ralph Izard: A Featured Biography


Finding himself loyal to the American cause while living in London at the pinnacle of the Revolutionary War, Ralph Izard of South Carolina (1741-1804) moved his family to Paris in 1776. From his post in France, he aided the Revolution by serving as Commissioner to the Court of Tuscany, seeking funds to build American war ships, and assisting in the negotiation of treaties with France. He returned to the United States in 1780 and two years later was selected as a delegate from South Carolina to the Continental Congress. He became one of South Carolina’s first two senators in 1789. In the Senate, Izard defended the institution of slavery, challenged the Bill of Rights, and helped to organize the federal court system. He finished out his Senate career as president pro tempore of the Third Congress. He retired from public service in 1795, devoting his remaining time to business and family interests.

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