RUGGLES, Timothy [1711-1795] -- American military leader, jurist, politician, General
RUGGLES, Timothy, jurist, was born in Rochester, Mass., Oct. 20, 1711; son of the Rev. Timothy and Mary (White) Ruggles; grandson of Capt. Samuel Ruggles of Roxbury and Martha Woodbridge, his wife, who was a granddaughter of Governor Thomas Dudley.
He was graduated from Harvard in 1732; studied law, and established himself in practice in Rochester. In 1735 he married Mrs. Bathsheba Newcomb, widow of William Newcomb and the daughter of the Hon. Melatiah Bourne of Sandwich. He removed to Sandwich, Mass., in 1740, and there remained, with increasing reputation and a constantly increasing list of clients, till 1753, when he removed to Hardwick. He was an impressive pleader, his eloquence enhanced by his majestic presence. His services were in constant demand in adjoining counties, where his principal antagonist was Col. James Otis, then at the height of his fame. At the time of his settlement in Hardwick he had accumulated a liberal fortune, and entered upon a style of living commensurate with his standing and affluence.
He was appointed judge of the court of common pleas in 1756, and from 1762 to the Revolution he was chief-justice of that court, and served as a special justice of the provincial superior court, 176275. He was repeatedly elected a representative in the general court of Massachusetts, and while the armies were in winter quarters was speaker of the house, 176263.
He was commissioned colonel in the provincial forces under Sir William Johnson, and was second in command at the battle of Lake George in 1755, where he distinguished himself for courage, coolness and ability. In 1758 he commanded the third division of the provincial troops under Abercrombie in the attack on Ticonderoga. He served as brigadier-general under Amherst in the campaign of 175960. In 1763 he was appointed by the Crown "surveyor-general of the King's forests," as a reward in a measure for his military services in the French and Indian war.
He was a delegate to the first colonial (or Stamp Act) congress of 1765, which met in New York, October 7, and was elected its president, but refused to sanction the addresses sent by that body to Great Britain, for which he was publicly censured by the general court of Massachusetts. He was led by a sense of duty "in the halls of legislature and on the platform to declare against rebellion and bloodshed." He was appointed mandamus councillor, Aug. 16, 1774, and in 1775 left Boston for Nova Scotia with the British troops and accompanied Lord Howe to Staten Island. His estates were confiscated, and in 1779 he received a grant of 10,000 acres of land in Wilmot, Nova Scotia, where he engaged in agriculture. [A] daughter Mary married Dr. John Green of Green Hill, Worcester, Mass. Judge Ruggles died in Wilmot, Nova Scotia, Aug. 4, 1795. BDNA
|Delegate to first colonial (Stamp Act) congress|
Bookmarks (off-site links)
- Works by
- Works about
- Specific periods, events, aspects
- Brigadier General Timothy Ruggles The Worcester Magazine and Historical Journal - May 1826
- Memorials, tributes, shrines
- Bibliographies and Link Farms