Lexington and Concord collection
Charles James Fox was born in London on January 24, 1749. After attending Eton and Oxford, his first political success came with his election to Parliament in 1768. Though he initially supported the government's efforts against the populist machinations of John Wilkes, Fox's political views began to shift after receiving and resigning a number of political appointments, leading him to increasingly ally himself with the Rockingham Whigs. During the early 1770s, Fox opposed the British economic policies that later sparked the American Revolution. In July 1780, he was elected to the first of many parliamentary terms representing Westminster, and from 1782-1784 he served in the ministry of Rockingham and Shelburne. After the failure of an unlikely coalition with Lord North in 1783, Fox's antipathy toward King George III increased dramatically, defining the remainder of his political career. During William Pitt's term as Prime Minister, Fox became an outspoken supporter of Irish Home Rule and a prominent opposition leader. He died on September 13, 1806.