Patrick Henry was an attorney, planter and politician whose oratory
and actions elevated him to statesman.
On March 23, 1775, Henry gave his famous speech in Richmond, Va.,
demanding “Give me liberty or give me death.”
Henry was born May 29, 1736, and died June 6, 1799. A Founding
Father, he served as the first and sixth post-colonial governor of
Virginia, from 1776 to 1779 and from 1784 to 1786.
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As the drums of war were sounding, the Second Virginia Convention
met at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Richmond, instead of the capitol
After three days of discussion, Henry presented a proposal to
organize a volunteer company of cavalry or infantry in every Virginia
county, reportedly closing with his famous line.
Besides his impassioned plea for liberty, Henry is known as a leader
of the opposition to the Stamp Act of 1765.
To mark the American Revolution, the American Bicentennial
Commemorative Society issued a series of 76 medals, including one
showing the pivotal proclamation.