Francis Hopkinson (1737-1791) was a native of Pennsylvania. Born of English immigrants, he was the first graduate of the College of Philadelphia. He was a lawyer, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, a composer and a writer of political satires.
Yet it is his contributions to this country’s most powerful symbols that perhaps best reflects his legacy. It was Hopkinson who designed the American flag and it was Hopkinson who, in 1780, served as a consultant to the Second Committee assembled by Congress to design a seal for the United States of America. His contributions to the Great Seal included the 13 stripes, 13 stars, the arrows and the olive branch.
Francis Hopkinson died suddenly of an apoplectic attack on May 8, 1791. He left a wife and five children. He is buried in the Christ Church Burial Ground in Philadelphia.
Pierre Eugene Du Simitiere
Pierre Eugene Du Simitiere was born in Geneva, Switzerland. He was an artist and a painter who came to America in 1763 and moved to Philadelphia in 1772. There, he continued to practice his art by sketching many of the dignitaries, both American and British, who traveled to Philadelphia during the turbulent times of the 1770’s. He also designed the state seals of Virginia, Delaware and Georgia and was involved with the design of the Great Seal of the United States, In 1781 Princeton University, (then the College of New Jersey), bestowed upon him an honorary degree of Master of Arts.