The first Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court was the president of the American Bible Society. Who was he? John Jay, who died MAY 17, 1829. A member of the Continental Congress, even serving as its president, John Jay signed the Treaty of Paris with Franklin and Adams, ending the Revolutionary War. He helped ratify the Constitution by writing the Federalist Papers with Madison and Hamilton. In 1777, Jay stated to an Ulster County Grand Jury: "The Americans are the first people whom Heaven has favoured with an opportunity of...choosing the forms of government under which they should live." To the New York Convention, December 23, 1776, John Jay said: "When you have done all things, then rely upon the good Providence of Almighty God for success, in full confidence that without his blessings, all our efforts will inevitably fail...The holy gospels are yet to be preached to these western regions, and we have the highest reason to believe that the Almighty will not suffer slavery and the gospel to go hand in hand. It cannot, it will not be." On May 17, 1829, as he was dying, John Jay was asked if he had any last words for his children. He replied: "They have the Book."