How much do you know about America's famous Founding Fathers?

HISTORY

By: John Miller

6 Min Quiz

Image: YouTube

About This Quiz

America's Founding Fathers were instrumental in casting off British oppression and fashioning a country built on freedom for (almost) everyone. How much do you know about the famous Founding Fathers?

Who are America's "Founding Fathers"?

America's Founding Fathers are the people who led the American Revolution. They put their lives on the line to help the 13 colonies gain freedom from Britain.

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Most historians say there were _____ men recognized as the primary Founding Fathers.

When it comes to the Founding Fathers, there are seven men who tower above all others. These seven men helped to guide the Revolution and shaped many of the United States' ideals and principles.

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Who is NOT generally regarded as one of the Founding Fathers?

Richard Nixon is definitely not regarded as one of the Founding Fathers. The Founding Fathers are George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, John Jay and John Adams.

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Which Founding Father led the Continental Army during the Revolution and then became America's first president?

George Washington is often called the "father of the country" for a reason. He not only led the rag-tag Continental Army to victory against the illustrious British forces, he then went on to lead the entire country as president.

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True or false, are there definitely only seven Founding Fathers?

There are various ways to categorize the Founding Fathers. Some people like to lump together everyone who signed the Declaration of Independence. Others mention attendees of the Constitutional Convention. There's no "right" way to say who is and who isn't a Founding Father.

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Who came up with the term "Founding Fathers," anyway?

The term "Founding Fathers" didn't hit the mainstream until President Warren Harding coined the term in 1916.

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George Washington is often regarded as the father of the country. What was his upbringing like?

Washington was born into a rich family in colonial Virginia. He inherited enormous wealth and was groomed for leadership from day one.

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True or false, were all of the Founding Fathers adamantly opposed to slavery?

All of the Founding Fathers had money, and some of them owned hundreds of slaves. But some of them also abhorred the practice and were committed to ending it altogether.

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What did John Adams do after the Boston Massacre?

After the massacre, the British soldiers who did the shooting couldn't find legal representation. Against great public pressure, Adams stepped forward and offered to represent the men. He helped six of them gain acquittals.

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What was one of Benjamin Franklin's nicknames?

Franklin was sometimes called "The First American." He was one of the first and loudest voices supporting the idea of American independence.

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Which Founding Father was also the primary author of the Declaration of Independence?

Thomas Jefferson struggled with public speaking, but with a pen and paper, he was a fountain of eloquence and precision. He wrote many of the most famous words of the Declaration.

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How did James Madison manage to double the size of the United States?

Madison was in charge of the Louisiana Purchase, which acquired a huge swath of territory for a measly $11 million. In one fell swoop, the young country doubled in size.

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True or false, did Benjamin Franklin really want the turkey to be the national bird instead of the bald eagle?

It's one of the most perpetuated myths in America -- that Franklin preferred the turkey to the bald eagle as a symbol for America. But it's not true. He mentioned the idea in passing when he disapproved of the bald eagle, which he thought was a lazy bird with poor moral character.

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What did the Founding Fathers have in common?

The Founding Fathers were upper-class types. They had the money and the education to take part in a political revolution as opposed to, say, scraping by at a minimum wage job just to survive.

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Thomas Jefferson served as vice president in which administration?

Jefferson was VP under John Adams, who served one term as president. Jefferson later served two terms as president. Can you tell that all of these guys were well-connected?

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Which Founding Father is well-known for his experiments with electricity?

Benjamin Franklin was an exceedingly talented politician, and he was also a scientist. He came up with the idea of flying a kite in a storm in order to learn about electricity. Don't try that at home.

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Which Founding Father helped to create a national bank?

Alexander Hamilton was all about the banking system and its role in the young republic. He also served as secretary of the treasury under President George Washington.

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John Jay worked hard to end which cruel practice?

Jay was a vocal opponent of slavery, and he spent his life working to abolish the practice. His leadership helped to end slavery in New York.

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Which president helped to launch the Lewis and Clark expedition, which explored the unmapped American West?

Thomas Jefferson was a visionary who understood the importance of the unmapped territory of the West. He schemed and found quiet ways to fund the expensive expedition, which unearthed amazing information about the frontier.

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Which Founding Father served two terms as vice president and one as president?

John Adams was a distinguished politician and lawyer who was both VP and President. He was also often considered an unlikeable weirdo by many of his contemporaries.

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Which Founding Father also helped to create the New York Post newspaper?

Alexander Hamilton was a busy man. Not only did he fuel the Revolution, but he founded the New York Post too. One wonders how he'd feel about the paper's current sensationalist approach to the "news."

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Which Founding Father most likely had a baby with one of his many, many slaves?

Thomas Jefferson almost certainly fathered a child by one of his slaves, Sally Hemmings. That fact has not damaged his nearly untouchable legacy as one of America's greatest presidents.

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True or false, were most of the Founding Fathers natives of the colonies?

It's true, most of the Founding Fathers were born and raised in the colonies. And as such, they were familiar with British oppression and wanted to chart a new path for their futures.

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Prior to the Revolution, how much political experience did most of the Founding Fathers have?

Most of the Founding Fathers had a lot of political experience. So when it came time to oppose Britain, they knew how to operate the machinery of power.

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What did George Washington do once it was clear that the colonists would win the Revolutionary War?

In keeping with the spirit of the young, free country, Washington resigned as commander-in-chief of the army. Then, of course, he was elected president.

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John Adams is known for his hard work in developing which branch of the American military?

Adams knew that, as with Britain, America would need a strong navy to defend its shores and project power. Some historians call him the "Father of the Navy."

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True or false, did Benjamin Franklin know that it was dangerous to fly a kite near lightning?

Franklin was no dummy. He wrote that he knew lightning was dangerous, and as such, he conceived numerous workarounds so that he wasn't always at risk of electrocution during his experiments with electricity.

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The Founding Fathers came up with the Articles of Confederation, which did what?

In extricating the colonies from Britain, the Founding Fathers needed a national government to replace English control. The Articles of Confederation helped to establish the fledgling federal government.

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Which Founding Father was a senior aide to George Washington during the Revolution?

Not all of the Founding Fathers jumped at the chance to serve in the military during the war. But Hamilton did. He worked his way up through the ranks and became a vital aide to Gen. Washington.

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Which of following Founding Fathers DID sign the Declaration of Independence?

Believe it or not, four of the seven major Founding Fathers didn't sign the Declaration of Independence. Of these three, only John Adams signed the all-important Declaration.

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