Biography Of Jacob Broom

Submitted By cnm1122
Words: 955
Pages: 4

MaryKate Cole
Coach Ragland
Founding fathers essay
4 April 2014
Jacob Broom Jacob Broom was born in Wilmington, Delaware on October 17, 1752. He was the oldest son. His father, James Broom, was a well-known blacksmith and prosperous farmer and his mother, Esther Willis, a Quaker. Jacob was most likely educated at home for the first few years. He entered the Old Academy around 1765. There he studied surveying, apparently completing his courses successfully around the spring of 1772. At the end of May of that year, he advertised himself to be open for business as “Jacob Broom, SURVEYOR and CONVEYANCER, at his Office the Corner of Market street and Third Street, in the Borough of Wilmington, and opposite David Bush, Esquire.” The family apparently owned a significant portion of the land between Front and 3rd St, bordering on Market, as well individual lots and land outside of the city. This quite likely was a portion of the property mentioned in Grandfather Thomas’ will, and was being split up into smaller lots over time. Some was kept in the family, and it is here that Jacob also started his first businesses and was still living at the time of his father’s death. In 1773, shortly after he opened his first business on Market St., Jacob married Rachel Pierce. Jacob’s children Ann, James Madison, Esther and Sarah followed in short order as evidenced by a belated baptism of several of the children in 1784. It is possible that Esther had died by this time. We do know that she was not mentioned in James’ will so most likely died before 1791. This record also contains a note that a daughter Elizabeth had been baptized in 1777. She had presumably died in the meantime as another Elizabeth is baptized in 1784. Children Jacob Pierce, Rachel Maria, Lavinia and Nicholas Way followed between 1785 and 1793. Of these children, Nicholas Way, who was named for James’ cousin, the well-known doctor Nicholas Way, also probably died very young. It seems that Jacob & Rachel had ten children and not the eight commonly mentioned. However, only eight reached adulthood. Even as a young man Broom attracted considerable attention in Wilmington's thriving business community, a prominence that propelled him into a political career. He held a variety of local offices, including borough assessor, president of the city's "street regulators;" a group responsible for the care of the street, water, and sewage systems, and justice of the peace for New Castle County. He became vice-mayor of Wilmington in 1776 at the age of 24, winning re-election to this post six times over the next few decades. He also served as mayor of the city four times. All his life he never lost an election. He was an attorney-general until he died. Broom sat in the state legislature in the years 1784-1786 and 1788, during which time he was chosen as a delegate to the Annapolis Convention, but he did not attend. Although the strong pacifist influence of his Quaker friends and relatives kept him from fighting in the Revolution, Broom was a Patriot who contributed to the cause of independence. For example, he put his abilities as a surveyor at the disposal of the Continental Army, preparing detailed maps of the region for General Washington shortly before the Battle of Brandywine. Despite his lack of involvement in national politics prior to the Constitutional Convention, Broom was a dedicated supporter of strong central government. When George Washington visited Wilmington in 1783, Broom urged him to "contribute your advice and influence to promote that harmony and union of our infant governments which are so essential to the permanent establishment of our freedom, happiness and prosperity."
Broom carried these opinions