Time Line  (a partial list of his offices and accomplishments)

 November 13, 1732  - The American statesmen and pamphleteer Dickinson was born in Talbot county, Maryland.

1741 - The Dickinson family moves to Poplar Hall, the present site of the Dickinson Plantation in Kent County, Delaware.

1750 - At age 18, John Dickinson moves to Philadelphia to study law.

1753-1757 - He continues his law studies at the Middle Temple, Inns of Court, in London

 October - 1759  - After practicing law for about a year, he is elected to the Delaware assembly as a Kent county representative. (AGE 27)

 October 1760  - He is re-elected and chosen speaker of the assembly.  (Father) Samuel Dickinson dies.

 May 1762  - He is elected to fill in a vacant seat in Pennsylvania Assembly in a special election.

 October 1764  - He is re-elected to Pennsylvania assembly. He breaks with Benjamin Franklin and Joseph Galloway over their push to make Pennsylvania a royal colony.

 September 1765  - He chairs committee to write instructions for Pennsylvania Representatives to the Stamp Act Congress (Age 33)

 October 1765  - He serves as representative to Stamp Act Congress, and writes the Declaration and the Petition to the King.

 December 1765  - He writes Pamphlet The Late Regulations Respecting the British Colonies Considered.

 December 1767  - He writes a letter series in newspapers entitled Letters From A Pennsylvania Farmer to the Inhabitants of the British Colonies. (Age 35)

July 1768 - He writes and publishes "The Liberty Song".

1770 - He marries Mary Norris, (aka Polly) daughter of a wealthy and prominent Philadelphia Quaker family.

 October 1770  - He is elected to Pennsylvania Assembly.

December 1773 - The Boston Tea Party occurs.

 June 1774  - He is appointed Chairman of the Philadelphia Committee of Correspondence.

 October 1774  - He is elected to Pennsylvania Assembly; serves as delegate to First Continental Congress; writes 4 documents: An Address to the Inhabitants of Quebec, the First Petition to the King, the Bill of Rights, [and] List of Grievances, and To the Inhabitants of the Colonies.

April 1775 - The battle of Lexington and Concord is fought on April 18.

 May 1775  - He serves as representative to Second Continental Congress

 June 1775  - He is appointed Chairman of Committee of Safety and Defense for Pennsylvania. The Battle of Bunker Hill is fought.

 July 1775  - He writes the "Olive Branch Petition" and collaborates with Thomas Jefferson to write "Declaration on Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms.

 June 1776  - He writes the first draft of the Articles of Confederation.  He abstains from voting for Independence, recognizing his negative vote would jeopardize unity at the time of war.  He joins his militia unit in New Jersey.

July - August 1776 - He leads the 1st Philadelphia Battalion of Associates to  meet the British in New Jersey.

October 1776 - He is elected to the Pennsylvania Assembly (resigns in November and declines to serve in Delaware)

November 1776  - He declines to be elected in both Pennsylvania and Delaware Assemblies.

January 1777  - The Delaware Assembly appoints Dickinson as a delegate to congress; he declines. 

May 1777 - He begins freeing his slaves.

Spring - Summer 1777 - He serves as a private in the Delaware militia.

April 1779  - He accepts appointment to congress of Delaware and serves as a delegate to Congress from Delaware until November.

 November 1780  - He is selected to Delaware Assembly. (Age 48)

August 1781 - Tories attack and damage Poplar Hall.

 November 1781  - He is elected President of Delaware, president of Delaware's Supreme Executive Council, President of Pennsylvania and serves on Pennsylvania's Supreme Executive Council. 

November 1782 - He is elected president of the Pennsylvania Supreme Executive Council.

October 1785 - He moves to Wilmington

May 1786 - He frees all his remaining slaves.

September 1786  - He leads Delaware delegates to Annapolis Convention, is selected chairman of convention.

May 1787  - He is a delegate from Delaware at the Constitutional Convention.

1788  - He writes the nine letters signed "Fabius" which defend and endorse the Constitution.

December - June 1791-92 - He serves as president of the Delaware Constitutional Convention

December 1792  - He is elected to the Delaware Assembly

March 1793  - He resigns his senatorial seat signaling the end of his political career.

August 1794 - He leads a citizens' group in protest of the Jay Treaty.

1803 - Mary Dickinson dies.

1804 - Poplar Hall burns.  Dickinson moves to Wilmington.

1795 - 1808 - He engages in philanthropy, writes on political issues, informally advises statesmen such as George Logan, Thomas Jefferson, Caesar Rodney.

February 1808  - John Dickinson dies at age 75.