Born in Cork city in 1734 to a prosperous merchant family, Stephen Moylan was the eldest son of John Moylan and Mary Ann Doran. Despite his family's high status, Stephen could not recieve a formal education in Ireland because his family were Catholics. As a result of this he was sent to Paris to study. Once he had completed his education, he began working with his family's shipping business in Portugal. He used this experience and knowledge to set up his own shipping business in Philadelphia when he emigrated there in 1768.
In 1775, Moylan's strong belief that the only way forwards for America was full independence from Britain led him to join the American Continental Army. His experience in shipping was put to good use when he was charged with the task of fitting out the ships of the Continental Navy. He rose through the ranks to become an important member of George Washington's staff and took part in several important battles in the fight for independence.
Perhaps the most enigmatic aspect of Stephen Moylan's story, is the fact that he is the individual first credited with coining the term, "The United States of America". The story goes that in a letter written to Joseph Reed (Washington's secretary), Moylan referred to, "full and ample powers from the United States of America".
He died in 1811 and is buried in the Old St Mary Cemetery, Philadelphia.
|Date of Birth||1734 (circa)|
|Date of Death||11th Apr 1811|