Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Galloway, Joseph
GALLOWAY, JOSEPH (1730–1803), lawyer, was born near West River, Anne Arundel, in Maryland, America, in 1730. Early in life he went to Philadelphia, where he speedily rose to eminence as a lawyer and politician, becoming speaker in the General Assembly of Pennsylvania. In the disputes between the proprietary interest and the assembly he took part with Franklin on the popular side. In May 1764 he supported a petition in favour of having the governors nominated by the king instead of the proprietors of the province, which was under discussion in the assembly. His speech, with a long preface by Franklin, was published in Philadelphia, and reprinted in London. John Dickinson, who had taken the other side, challenged him, and wrote a pamphlet against him. At the beginning of the rebellion Galloway was elected a member of the first congress in 1774, and submitted a plan for establishing a political union between Great Britain and the colonies. The scheme found little favour, but was published, with copious explanatory notes, in a pamphlet entitled 'A Candid Examination of the Mutual Claims of Great Britain and the Colonies,' New York and London, 1775.
In December 1776 the Howes issued a proclamation of indemnity, of which Galloway took advantage, and joined the British army under Sir William Howe. His accession was regarded as so important that he was allowed 200l. a year from the date when he joined the army till some other provision could be made. When Philadelphia was taken in 1777 he was appointed a magistrate of police for that city, with a salary made up to 300l. a year, and 6s. a day more for a clerk. He was likewise appointed superintendent of the port, with a salary of 20s. a day, making in all upwards of 770l. a year. When Philadelphia was evacuated in June 1778, he left for England. The insults to which he was subjected by the opposite party upon his departure are mentioned in a passage of John Trumbull's Hudibrastic poem 'MacFingal:'
Did you not in as vile and shallow way
Fright our poor Philadelphian Galloway ?
Your Congress, when the daring ribald
Belied, berated, and bescribbled :
What ropes and halters you did send,
Terrific emblems of his end,
Till, lest he'd hang in more than effigy,
Fled in a fog the trembling refugee.
In 1779 he was examined before the House of Commons, when he said that he had left estates and property worth more than 40,000l. This evidence was published in one volume 8vo, London, 1779, and in 1855 was reprinted at Philadelphia by the council of the Seventy-six Society. He likewise published in 1779 'Letters to a Nobleman on the Conduct of the War in the Middle Colonies,' accusing General Howe of gambling and gross neglect of duty. A rejoinder by Sir William Howe was speedily followed by 'A Letter to Lord Howe on his Naval Conduct,' in which both brothers were charged with misconduct. He afterwards published 'Cool Thoughts on the Consequences of the American Rebellion,' and 'Historical and Political Reflections on the American Rebellion' (early in 1780).
Galloway's remaining years were devoted to a study of the prophecies. In 1802 and 1803 he published in two elaborate volumes : 1. 'Brief Commentaries upon such parts of the Revelations and other prophecies as immediately refer to the present times,' &c. 2. 'The Prophetic or Anticipated History of the Church of Rome, written and published six hundred years before the rise of that Church; in which the prophetic Figures and Allegories are literally explained, and her Tricks, Frauds, Blasphemies, and dreadful Persecutions of the Church of Christ are foretold and described; prefaced by an Address, dedicatory, expostulatory, and critical, to the Rev. Mr. Whitaker, Dean of Canterbury;' to which is added 'A Pill for the Infidel and Atheist,' &c. He died at Watford, Hertfordshire, on 29 Aug. 1803. One daughter survived him.[London Monthly Review, vols. xxxii. 1. lii., &c.; Gent. Mag. 1780, 1803; Letter and Statement by General Howe, 1779; Trumbull's MacFingal, a satirical poem in four cantos, Hartford, 1782; Franklin's Life and Works, London, 1806; Duychnick's Cyclop((ae))dia of American Literature, vol. i.]