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John Randolph was born in 1727 or 1728, probably at what is now called the Peyton Randolph House on Market Square, in Williamsburg and his heritage was thoroughly Virginian. Educated at William & Mary, he traveled to London in 1745 to study law at the Middle Temple at the Inns of Court in London, and returned to Williamsburg as a barrister to practice law in 1749. He served as the King's Attorney General of the Colony of Virginia from 1767-1775, when he and his family left Williamsburg for England. The third child of Sir John and Lady Susannah Randolph, John was convinced British-Americans owed more loyalty to the law of the crown and sought to repair the political differences between his home country of Virginia and his mother country of Britain. He maintained his friendship with Thomas Jefferson, and they communicated civilly throughout the war. Historians have tagged him with the nickname John "The Tory", to the degree that the home he and his wife built in Williamsburg is known by the name of the man who purchased the house after him, "Tazewell Hall". John Randolph died in Brompton, England, in 1784. In death, his body was returned to Virginia, is interred beside his father, mother and brother and sister-in law under the chapel at the College of William & Mary.


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A note about the contents of this site

This website contains the best available information from known sources at the time it was written. Unfortunately, many of the early original records of William & Mary were destroyed by fires, military occupation, and the normal effects of time. The information in this website is not complete, and it changes as we continue to research and uncover new sources.