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Roger Wolcott
Roger Wolcott
American, 1679 - 1767
Biography: Roger Wolcott was born on 4 January 1679, the son of Simon and Martha (Pitkin) Wolcott of Windsor, Connecticut. He married Sarah Drake on 3 December 1702. They had fifteen children, including Oliver Wolcott (1726-1797), before her death in January 1748. He was a selectman for Windsor in 1707, and two years later was admitted to the bar and elected a deputy to the Assembly. He was clerk of the lower house in 1710 and 1711, named a justice of the peace in 1710, and in 1711 served as commissary of Connecticut stores in Hovenden Walker's abortive expedition against Quebec. In May 1714 the freemen elected him assistant, and barring two years, 1718 and 1719, re-chose him annually until he became deputy-governor in 1741. He filled that post until 1750, when he was elected governor. During these years he served on numerous and important committees including those which considered boundary questions, the revision of laws, Indian affairs, bills of credit, and the Mohegan Indian and Lechmere cases. He became judge of the Hartford County court in 1721, of the superior court in 1732, and in 1741, chief justice. In the military organization of the colony he steadily advanced from a captaincy in 1722 to be colonel of the 1st Regiment in 1739. Both Governor Shirley of Massachusetts and Governor Law of Connecticut commissioned him, a man of sixty-seven, as major-general in 1745, second in command on the expedition which took Louisburg. Wolcott served ably as governor until 1754. In the May election that year Thomas Fitch overwhelmingly defeated him. The report spread that as governor he had been negligent in guarding the treasure of a disabled Spanish snow and that the colony would have to stand the loss. By 1755 he was exonerated and lost the election by only 200 votes. The rest of his life he spent on his farm, in his spare time reading church history.