Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.
Related to Paul Revere: Samuel Adams
|Birthplace||North End, Boston, Massachusetts|
silversmith, colonial militia officer
Revere, Paul, 1735–1818, American silversmith and political leader in the American Revolution, b. Boston. In his father's smithy he learned to work gold and silver, and he became a leading silversmith of New England, creating works for customers on both sides of the American Revolution. He also turned to various other skills—designing, engraving, printing, bell founding, and dentistry. In the French and Indian War he was a soldier, and in the period of growing colonial discontent with British measures after the Stamp Act (1765), he was a fervent anti-British propagandist. He early joined the Sons of Liberty, took part in the Boston Tea Party (which he also portrayed in an engraving), and was a courier (1774) for the Massachusetts committee of correspondence. Revere became a figure of popular history and legend, however, because of his ride on the night of Apr. 18, 1775, to warn the people of the Massachusetts countryside that British soldiers were being sent out in the expedition that, as it turned out, started the American Revolution (see Lexington and Concord, battles of). William Dawes and Samuel Prescott also rode forth with the news. Revere did not reach his destination at Concord but was captured by the British; nevertheless, it is Revere who is remembered as an American icon, the midnight rider, chiefly because of the 1861 poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. He designed the first seal for the united colonies, designed and printed the first Continental bond issue, and established (1776) a powder mill at Canton, Mass. His military career was not distinguished. On the ill-fated expedition against Penobscot he was arrested for disobeying orders (though a court-martial later acquitted him of the charges), and in 1780 he returned to silversmithing. His shrewdness in other enterprises, particularly the establishment of an iron foundry, a brass-casting foundry, and a copper-rolling mill, helped to make his later years very prosperous.
See biographies by E. G. Taylor (1930) and E. Forbes (1942, repr. 1962); D. H. Fischer, Paul Revere's Ride (1994); R. Martello, Midnight Ride, Industrial Dawn: Paul Revere and the Growth of American Enterprise (2010).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2022, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
(1735–1818) warned colonials of British advance (1775). [Am. Hist.: 425–426]
(1735–1818) famous American patriot who warned, “The British are coming” (1775). [Am. Hist.: Jameson, 425–426]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
Revere, Paul(1735–1818) patriot, silversmith; born in Boston, Mass. He was an excellent silversmith and ardent patriot, but a mediocre military leader. A member of the Sons of Liberty, he became the primary express rider for the Boston Committee of Safety. His famous ride to Lexington in 1775 was only the best-known of the many courier services he performed. He later was court-martialed and acquitted for his leadership during the failed Penebscot Bay expedition of 1779. After the American Revolution, he continued his silversmith trade with great success. He provided materials for the U.S.S. Constitution and worked with Robert Fulton in developing copper boilers for steamboats.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.