Jonathan Sewall

Jonathan Sewall (August 24, 1729 – September 27, 1796) was the last British attorney general of Massachusetts.

He was born in Boston on August 24, 1729 to Jonathan Sewall Sr. and Mary (Payne) Sewall. Sewall's father was an unsuccessful merchant who died at a young age. However through scholarships, funds raised by his pastor William Cooper and with the help of his uncle, Chief Justice Stephen Sewall, Sewall was able to attend Harvard. Sewall graduated from Harvard College in 1748, and was a teacher in Salem until 1756. He married Esther Quincy, a daughter of merchant Edmund Quincy. After studying law, he began a successful practice in Charlestown and served as attorney general of Massachusetts from 1767 to 1775. In 1768 he was also appointed Judge of Admiralty for Nova Scotia.

In 1759 Sewall became a very close friend and patron of John Adams, the future second President of the United States. At the urging of Governor Francis Bernard, Sewall offered Adams the position of Advocate General in the Admiralty Court. Adams declined. A devout Loyalist, Sewall took his family to England in 1775 after a mob stormed his family home in Cambridge (he was subsequently named in the Massachusetts Banishment Act of 1778). While in England, he changed the spelling of the family name to Sewell. Adams, in his diary, grieved that his best friend in the world had become his implacable enemy. While Adams was assigned to London as a U.S. minister to the Court of St. James's in 1785, he looked up his old friend and they had a two-hour meeting. Both men were entrenched in their own ideas and no reconciliation was possible; Adams considered Sewall a casualty of the war.

Sewall later served as a judge in the Vice Admiralty Court of Nova Scotia. He died in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1796.

His son Jonathan later served as Chief Justice of Lower Canada and his son Stephen served as solicitor general for Lower Canada. Provided by Wikipedia

1
by Philanthropos
Published 1756
printed in the year

2
by Philanthropos
Published 1850
E. Ward

4
by Philanthropos
Published 1764
printed for G. Burnet, at Bishop Burnet's Head in the Strand

5
by Philanthropos
Published 1736
printed for T. Cooper, at the Globe in Pater-noster-Row; and sold at all the pamphlet-shops in London and Westminster; and by John Webb, Bookseller, in Greenwich

7
by Philanthropos
Published 1753
printed for C. Corbett, in Fleet-Street

9
by Philanthropos
Published 1736
Printed for T. Cooper, at the Globe in Pater-noster-Row; and sold at all the pamphlet-shops in London and Wesminster; and by John Webb, bookseller, in Greenwich

10
by Philanthropos
Published 1764
Printed by Anthony Armbruster, in Moravian Alley

13
by Philanthropos
Published 1744
printed for J. Rivington, at the Bible and Crown, in St. Paul's Church-Yard

14
by Philanthropos
Published 1780
s.n

15
by Philanthropos
Published 1794
Printed by John Gough, (Successor to R.M. Jackson,) at the Globe, No. 20 Meath-Street

16
by Philanthropos
Published 1777
Printed for, and sold by, J. Quick at his State Lottery Offices, No. 5, Piccadilly; corner of Portugal-Street, Clare-Market; No.2, Windmill-Street; and may be had of all the booksellers in town and country

18
by Philanthropos
Published 1764
Printed by Anthony Armbruster, in Moravian Alley

19
by Philanthropos
Published 1732
Printed and sold by T. Gover, over-against Bridewell-Bridge, Blackflyers; and at most of the Pamphlet-Shops in London and West-minister

20
by Philanthropos
Published 1720
printed for J. Roberts in Warwick-Lane