“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Wilmington in New Castle County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

John McKinly

President (Governor) of Delaware, 1777

John McKinly Marker image. Click for full size.
By Nate Davidson, March 17, 2008
1. John McKinly Marker
Inscription. Delaware's only known foreign-born governor, John McKinly emigrated from Northern Ireland to Wilmington in 1742, began a medical practice and became actively involved in Delaware politics. McKinly served as a member of the Colonial Assembly, President of the Council of Safety, President (Governor) of Delaware, and helped establish the Delaware Medical Society. He died on August 31, 1796.
Erected by Delaware Public Archives. (Marker Number NC-81.)
Location. 39° 45.183′ N, 75° 33.017′ W. Marker is in Wilmington, Delaware, in New Castle County. Marker can be reached from South Park Drive just from North Adams Street. Click for map. Found within the Wilmington & Brandywine Cemetery. Access to the cemetery can be found on Delaware Avenue. Marker is in this post office area: Wilmington DE 19806, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Richard Bassett (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Sugar Bowl (about 700 feet away); First Presbyterian Church (approx. 0.2 miles away); Looking Back (approx. 0.2 miles away); African American Medal of Honor Recipients Memorial
Grave Restoration image. Click for full size.
By Nate Davidson, March 17, 2008
2. Grave Restoration
An interesting note about John McKinly that is not mentioned on the marker is that his term of service of President of Delaware ended when British troops entered his home, roused him from bed, and kidnapped him. He was detained for some months while the British hoped that he could be used as a pawn in a prisoner exchange. Delaware leaders did nothing to help McKinly, for by this time hard-line revolutionaries had taken power in the government and they resented McKinly's conservative tendancies. This embittered McKinly and after the war would never again become involved in politics of the state.
(approx. 0.2 miles away); Site of Old Cathedral Cemetery (approx. mile away); Delaware Children's Theatre (approx. 0.3 miles away); Joseph Tatnall House (approx. 0.4 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Wilmington.
Categories. Cemeteries & Burial SitesColonial EraPatriots & PatriotismWar, US Revolutionary
John McKinly Burial Site image. Click for full size.
By Nate Davidson, March 17, 2008
3. John McKinly Burial Site
Tombstone reads: This monument is erected in memory of John McKinly, born in the Kingdom of Ireland, February 24, A.D. 1721, died in this town August 31 A.D. 1796. He settled early in life in this country and pursuing the practice of physic soon became eminent in his profession. He served in several important public employments and particularly was the first person who filled the office of President of the State after the Declaration of Independence. He died, full of years having passed a long life usefully to the public and honorably to himself. He was one of the founders of the Delaware Medical Society.
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Nate Davidson of Salisbury, Maryland. This page has been viewed 612 times since then and 58 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Nate Davidson of Salisbury, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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