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Thomas Paine ( 1737 - 1809 )  Category ( Politicians ) [suggest a correction]
 

1737 marked the year of Thomas Paine’s birth. His father was a Quaker and his mother was an Anglican and both were from impoverished families. Paine’s family consisted of farmers and uneducated individuals. His father was a corset maker and Thomas left school when he was only twelve years old to help his father in his business.

When Thomas was nineteen, he went to sea as a merchant seaman. He returned to Great Britain after a short period of time away. He set up a shop in Kent where he became a master corsetmaker. However, his business would later fail. In 1759, he married Mary Lambert who would later die during childbirth taking their child with her.

Thomas Paine became an excise officer in Lincolnshire in 1762. He was transferred to Alford and was terminated soon after. He wrote a letter asking for reinstatement and it was granted upon the chance that a vacancy opened.

While waiting for the post that he once possessed to be vacated, Thomas Paine worked in Norfolk as a staymaker. He also worked as a servant. He later made application in hopes of becoming an ordained minister of the Church of England.

Thomas Paine was later appointed to East Sussex and he moved into the 15th Century Bull House where he would later make the acquaintance of Samuel Ollive and become involved in civic matters. On March 26, 1771, Thomas married Elizabeth Ollive.

Paine lobbied for better working conditions and higher pay for excisemen. In 1772, his first article The Case of the Officers of Excise was published and over 4,000 copies were printed.

Thomas Paine and his wife separated and Paine moved to London where he met Benjamin Franklin who advised him to move to the British colonies in America which was what he did. Paine’s voyage saw great illnesses on board. Those traveling became ill with typhoid fever. Several died on the trip but Paine survived.

Thomas Paine became best known for a work that he published in January of 1776. Common Sense became the best-seller of the eighteenth century. It sold over a half a million copies between Europe and America. Dubbed as a "political quack", Paine encouraged political independence from Great Britain.

Thomas Paine went down in history for his great writing abilities. His work Common Sense is studied in colleges and universities across the globe. There is a Thomas Paine Museum located in New Rochelle, New York.


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Title :From Revolution to Reconstruction: Biographies: Thomas Paine
Description : USA-project, biographies-area, biographical data on Thomas Paine (1737-1809)
 
 
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