Hans Christian Febiger (October 19, 1746, in Fåborg, Denmark – September 20, 1796, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) was an American Revolutionary War commander, confidant of General George Washington, and original member of the Society of the Cincinnati. Known by the moniker "Old Denmark", Febiger also served as treasurer of Pennsylvania from November 13, 1789, until his death.
Febiger was born on the island of Funen, Denmark in 1746. Around the age of sixteen his father died. For the next two years he received a military education, most likely in Copenhagen. In 1765 he travelled to the West Indies with his uncle who had been appointed the governor of the island of Santa Cruz. It is unclear as to why he began to pursue business interests, but by 1772 he was acquainting himself with the resources and products “in every town and port” from Cape Fear, North Carolina to Penobscot Bay, Maine. In 1774, he was “commercially engaged in the Eastern States in lumber, fish and horse trade.” He was an established merchant in a coastal town of Massachusetts when fighting broke out at Lexington and Concord. Sympathetic to the colonists’ struggles, on April 28, 1775, he joined Col. Samuel Gerrish’s Massachusetts Regiment. In May, he was appointed the regimental adjutant with the rank of captain.
Read more here in the Journal of the American Revolution -
Hans Christian Febiger
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