Entry in progress—B.P.
Wikipedia: Founding Fathers of the United States
The Founding Fathers of the United States were the political leaders who signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776 or otherwise took part in the American Revolution in winning American independence from Great Britain, or who participated in framing and adopting the United States Constitution in 1787-1788, or in putting the new government under the Constitution into effect. Within the large group known as “the founding fathers,” there are two key subsets, the Signers (who signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776) and the Framers (who were delegates to the Federal Convention and took part in framing or drafting the proposed Constitution of the United States). Most historians define the “founding fathers” to mean a larger group, including not only the Signers and the Framers but also all those who, whether as politicians or jurists or statesmen or soldiers or diplomats or ordinary citizens, took part in winning American independence and creating the United States of America. The eminent American historian Richard B. Morris, in his 1973 book Seven Who Shaped Our Destiny: The Founding Fathers as Revolutionaries, identified the following seven figures as the key founding fathers: Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, John Jay, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton.
Warren G. Harding, then a Republican Senator from Ohio, coined the phrase “Founding Fathers” in his keynote address to the 1916 Republican National Convention. He used it several times thereafter, most prominently in his 1921 inaugural address as President of the United States.
Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary
Main Entry: founding father
1 : an originator of an institution or movement : founder
2 often capitalized both Fs : a leading figure in the founding of the United States; specifically : a member of the American Constitutional Convention of 1787
(Oxford English Dictionary)
founding, ppl. a.
Associated with or marking the establishment of (something specified); that originated or created. Spec. founding father (freq. with capital initials), an American statesman of the Revolutionary period, esp. a member of the American Constitutional Convention of 1787; also transf.; founding member = founder member.
1903 Westm. Gaz. 17 Nov. 10/1 Founding members are now being elected for the Ladies’ Military and Naval Club.
1914 K. B. UMBRIET (title) Founding fathers: men who shaped our tradition. [NOTE: This is an error and should read 1941—ed.]
1953 Manch. Guardian Weekly 8 Oct. 5/1 The Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference was formed. Many of the ‘founding-fathers’ of the conference were Quakers.
1958 C. BAKER Friend in Power i. 14 The Founding Fathers, eternized in dark oils, looked benignly down from the white and gold walls
The One Hundred and Fiftieth Anniversary of the Consociatons, Fairfield
“Patriotism in Our Churches”
By Rev. Edward Anderson
Our land has been made secure (who doubts it) because of the Christian
that underlies it, as shown in the deeply religious phaze of our war. Are
prayers of the founding fathers to be echoed in prayers of the establishing
sons, for nothing?
1894 _Congressional Record_ 6 June 5849 (Hein Online) In that magnificent electoral revolution which had effaced Harrison ... they saw born again the grand and fearless spirit of the founding fathers of the American Constitution.
OCLC WorldCat record
The founding fathers.
Author: Nathan Schachner
Publisher: New York, Putnam 
Edition/Format: Book : English
New York City • Government/Law/Politics/Military • (0) Comments • Saturday, January 09, 2010 • Permalink