John Hancock was born in Quincy, Massachusetts, on January 12, 1737. After receiving his childhood education, Hancock was admitted to Harvard, where he graduated in 1754 and became a wealthy businessman in the shipping arena.
He is most famous for his extremely large signature on the Declaration of Independence. He was the first member of the Continental Congress to give his signature and his name is sometimes synonymous with the word signature today. Some reports state his reason for doing so is that he wanted the King to see his signature without glasses on, however the factuality of this is debated. Later in life, he was the governor of Massachusetts. He died October 8, 1793 in Quincy, Massachusetts.