Ingersoll, Jared

Ingersoll, Jared (1722-1781) Stamp Agent, Royalist: Ingersoll was born in Connecticut and studied at Yale, eventually moving to Boston with a British commission to act as a stamp agent for Connecticut, a position which Benjamin Franklin advised him to accept. After the demonstrations against the Stamp Act in various parts of the colonies, Ingersoll, assured of the governor's protection, tried to reason the people of New Haven into forbearance. Surrounding his house, they demanded that he resign as stamp agent. "I know not if I have the power to resign," he replied. He promised, however, that he would re-ship any stamps that he received or leave the matter to their decision. He was finally compelled to offer his resignation, which was not satisfactory to the people of other regions and, in order to save his house from an attack, he rode from New Haven, resolving to place himself under the protection of the legislature in Hartford. Several miles below Wethersfield, Ingersoll met a body of 500 men on horseback, preceded by three trumpeters and two militia officers. They received him and rode with his to Wethersfield, where they compelled him to resign his office. Entering a house for safety, he sent word of his situation to the governor and the assembly. After waiting three hours, the protesters began entering the house and, declaring that "the cause is not worth dying for," Ingersoll agreed to resign. Throwing his hat into the air and shouting "liberty and property" three times, as per the instructions of the crowd, Ingersoll read the agreement he had signed to the assembled patriots. In 1770, he was made admiralty judge of the middle district and lived in Philadelphia for a number of years, until he returned New Haven, where he spent the rest of his life. Unlike his father, Ingersoll's son, Jared Jr., was an active patriot, serving in public office and signing the U. S. Constitution.