09 February 1737….the birth of Thomas Paine
Paine is a hero to me…..I was given a copy of Common Sense by my grandfather when I was 10 years old……and later he gave me his book on the collective works of Paine……..so I was reading Paine at an early age and continue to do so today…..he is the one person on my list of famous people to have a beer with (if I ever get the chance). I am convinced that Jefferson wrote the DoI from notes given to him by Paine.
He is the original founder of the United States of America…..as a matter of fact he was the first person to use that title.
I have written several pots about Paine and his life…..
When Thomas Paine’s ship pulled into Baltimore harbor on October 30, 1802, a large gathering of friends and admirers were waiting at dockside to welcome him back. Others stood by as well, some filled with loathing, merely to observe a famous figure. Since leaving the United States in 1787 to find a builder for his iron bridge, Paine had authored some of the most incendiary tracts of the 18th century, had been imprisoned and narrowly escaped Robespierre’s guillotine, and was widely reported to be a drunk and an atheist.
When he journeyed to Federal City on November 5 to pay his respects to the country’s third president, he found that he needed an alias and help from a presidential aide to get a room at Lovell’s, the city’s only hotel. As he later wrote a friend and future biographer, Thomas Clio Rickman,
“You can have no idea of the agitation which my arrival occasioned. From New Hampshire to Georgia (an extent of 1,500 miles), every newspaper was filled with applause or abuse.”
Paine will always be the person in history I most admire….so when I read about his treatment after the revolution just galls me….but it showed just how “one way” the American people can be.