George Washington Papers

Honorary Degree from Harvard College, 3 April 1776

Honorary Degree from Harvard College

[Watertown, Mass.] 3 April 1776. Confers on GW the honorary degree of doctor of laws in recognition of his civic and military virtue.

DS, in Latin, in Samuel Langdon’s writing, DLC:GW. For a contemporary English translation of this document, see the New-England Chronicle (Boston), 25 April 1776. The diploma was signed by President Langdon and five fellows of the college: Nathanael Appleton, John Winthrop, Andrew Eliot, Samuel Cooper, and John Wadsworth. Cooper wrote in his diary that the meeting of the Harvard corporation and overseers was held at Watertown on 3 April and that he signed GW’s diploma on the following day. Cooper went to Cambridge on the afternoon of 4 April to say goodbye to GW but “found him set out for Boston, and f’m thence to N. York” (“Cooper’s Diary,” 339).

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