While many individuals contributed to the founding of the United States of America, Thomas Paine was unique among them. He went from complete obscurity to international fame in a few short years, and played a key role in convincing the average colonist to not only break free from England, but also to fight for it. Indeed, the Revolution may have fizzled out were it not for the galvanizing effect of Thomas Paine's wildly popular writings.
Despite his very humble beginnings, Paine was admired and respected by the likes of George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson. Yet, his workingman's perspective threatened many of those who would design a government to primarily benefit the wealthy and privileged. At times, Paine was the most hated man in America. The legacy of some of that animosity lives today.
We invite you to learn more about this fascinating figure in American history, a man of vision and integrity who sought to build a just society both in the newly formed United States and throughout the world.