Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Harrison, Benjamin (patriot)

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HARRISON, BENJAMIN, an American patriot; born in Berkeley, Va., about 1740. He was elected to the House of Burgesses soon after attaining his majority. In 1773 he was chosen a member of the committee which united the colonies against Great Britain. Shortly afterward he was elected to Congress and five times re-elected. On July 4, 1776, he reported, as chairman of the committee of the whole House, the Declaration of Independence, of which he was one of the signers. He opposed the ratification of the Federal Constitution, but, on its adoption, supported the National government. He died in April, 1791.