At 13 he left school and became an apprentice to his father. The silversmith trade afforded him connections with a cross-section of Boston society, which would serve him well when he became active in the American Revolution. As for religion, although his father attended puritan services, Revere Was drawn to the England. Revere eventually began attending the services of the political and provocative Jonathan Mayhem at the West Church. His father did not approve, and as a result father and son came to blows on one occasion.
Revere relented and returned to his father’s church, although he did become rinds with Mayhem, and returned to the West Church in the late 1 7605. Revere’s father died in 1 754, when Paul was legally too young to officially be the master of the family silver shop. In February 1 756, during the French and Indian War he enlisted in the army because of the weak economy, since army service promised consistent pay. He spent the summer at Fort William Henry at the southern end of Lake George in New York as part of an abortive plan for the capture of Fort SST. Frederic.
Don’t waste your time!
Order your assignment!
He did not stay long in the army, but returned to Boston and assumed control of the silver shop in his own name. On August 4, 1757, he married Sarah Erne their first child was born eight months later. He and Sarah had eight children, but three died young. Revere’s business began to suffer when the British economy entered a recession in the years following the Seven Years’ War, and declined further when the Stamp Act of 1765 resulted in a further downturn in the Massachusetts economy. Business was so poor that an attempt was made to attach his property in late 1765.
To help make ends meet he even took up dentistry, a skill set he was taught by a practicing surgeon who lodged at a friend’s house. Although Revere was not one of the “Loyal Nine”-?organizers of the earliest protests against the Stamp Act-?he was well connected with its members, who were laborers and artisans. Revere did not participate in some of the more raucous protests, such as the attack on the home of Lieutenant Governor Thomas Hutchinson. In 1 765, a group of militants who would become known as the “Sons of Liberty” formed, which Revere was a member of.
From 1 765 in support of the dissident cause, he produced engravings and other artifacts with political themes. Among these engravings are a depiction f the arrival of British troops in 1 768 and a famous depiction of the March 1 770, Boston Massacre. Although the latter was engraved by Revere and he included the inscription, “Engraved, Printed, & Sold by Paul Revere Boston I’, it was modeled on a drawing by Henry Pelham, and Revere’s engraving of the drawing was colored by a third man and printed by a fourth.
Revere also produced a bowl commemorating the Massachusetts assembly’s refusal to retract the Massachusetts Circular Letter. In 1 770 Revere purchased a house on North Square in Boson’s North End. The house revived space for his growing family while he continued to maintain his shop at nearby Clack’s Wharf. Sarah died in 1773, and on October 10 of that year Revere married Rachel Walker. They had eight children, three of whom died you nag. In November 1773 the merchant ship Dartmouth arrived in Boston harbor carrying the first shipment of tea made under the terms of the Tea Act.
This act authorized the British East India Company to ship tea directly to the colonies, by passing colonial merchants. Passage of the act prompted calls for renewed protests against the tea shipments, on which Townsend duties were still levied. Revere and Warren, as members of the informal “North End Caucus”, organized a watch over the Dartmouth to prevent the unloading of the tea. Revere took his turns on guard duty, and was one of the ringleaders in the Boston Tea Party of December 16, when colonists dumped tea from the Dartmouth and two other ships into the harbor.
From December 1773 to November 1 775, Revere served as a courier for the Boston Committee of Public Safety, traveling to New York and Philadelphia to report on the political unrest in Boston. Research has documented 18 such rides. Notice of some of them was published in Massachusetts newspapers, and British authorities received further intelligence of them from Loyalist Americans. In 1774, his cousin John on the island of Guernsey wrote to Paul taxation had seen reports of Pall’s role as an “express” in London newspapers.
In 1 774, the military governor of Massachusetts, General Thomas Gage, dissolved the provincial assembly on orders from Britain. Governor Gage also closed the port of Boston and all over the city forced private citizens to quarter soldiers in their homes. During this time, Revere and a group of 30 “mechanics” began meeting in secret at his favorite haunt, the Green Dragon, to coordinate the gathering of intelligence by “watching the Movements of British Soldiers”. Around this time Revere regularly contributed politically charged engravings to the recently founded Patriot monthly, Royal American Magazine.
He rode to Portsmouth, New Hampshire in December 1774 upon rumors of an impending landing of British troops there, a journey known in history as the Portsmouth Alarm. Although the rumors were false, his ride sparked a rebel success by provoking locals to raid Fort William and Mary, defended by just six soldiers, for its gunpowder supply. When British Army activity on April 7, 1 775, suggested the possibility Of troop movements, Joseph Warren sent Revere to warn the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, then sitting in Concord, the site of one of the larger caches of Patriot military supplies.
After receiving the warning, Concord residents began moving the military supplies away from the town. One week later, General Gage received instructions from Secretary of State William Legged, Earl of Dartmouth, to disarm the rebels, who were known to have hidden weapons in Concord, among other locations, and to imprison the rebellion’s leaders, especially Samuel Adams ND John Hancock. Dartmouth gave Gage considerable discretion in his commands.  Gage issued orders to Lieutenant Colonel Francis Smith to proceed from Boston “with utmost expedition and secrecy to Concord, where you will seize and destroy… Al Military stores…. But you will take care that the soldiers do not plunder the inhabitants or hurt private property. ” Gage did not issue written orders for the arrest of rebel leaders, as he feared doing so might spark an uprising. Between 9 and 10 p. M. On the night of April 18, 1 775, Joseph Warren told Revere and William Dates that the inn’s troops were about to embark in boats from Boston bound for Cambridge and the road to Lexington and Concord. Warren’s intelligence suggested that the most likely objectives of the regulars’ movements later that night would be the capture of Adams and Hancock.
They did not Worry about the possibility of regulars marching to Concord, since the supplies at Concord were safe, but they did think their leaders in Lexington were unaware of the potential danger that night. Revere and Dates were sent out to warn them and to alert colonial militias in nearby towns. In the days fore April 18, Revere had instructed Robert Newman, the sexton of the North Church, to send a signal by lantern to alert colonists in Charleston as to the movements of the troops when the information became known.
In what is well known today by the phrase “one if by land, two if by sea”, one lantern in the steeple would signal the army’s choice of the land route while two lanterns would signal the route “by water” across the Charles River. Revere first gave instructions to send the signal to Charleston. He then crossed the Charles River by rowboat, slipping past the British warship HAMS Somerset at anchor. Crossings were banned at that hour, but Revere safely landed in Charleston and rode to Lexington, avoiding a British patrol and later warning almost every house along the route.
The Charleston colonists dispatched additional riders to the north. Riding through present-day Somerville, Medford, and Arlington, Revere warned patriots along his route, many of whom set out on horseback to deliver warnings of their own. By the end of the night there were probably as many as 40 riders throughout Middlesex County carrying the news of the army’s advance. Revere did not shout the phrase later attributed to him. His mission depended on secrecy; the countryside was filled with British army patrols, and most of the Massachusetts colonists.
Revere’s warning, according to eyewitness accounts Of the ride and Revere’s own descriptions, was “The Regulars are com inning out. ” When British Army activity on April 7, 1 775, suggested the possibility of troop movements, Joseph Warren sent Revere to warn the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, then sitting in Concord, the site of one of the larger caches of Patriot military supplies. After receiving the warning, Concord residents began moving the military supplies away from he town.
Revere was captured and questioned by the British soldiers at gunpoint. He told them of the army’s movement from Boston, and that British army troops would be in some danger if they approached Lexington, because of the large number of hostile militia gathered there. He and other captives taken by the patrol were still escorted east toward Lexington, until about a half mile from Lexington they heard a gunshot. The British major demanded Revere explain the gunfire, and Revere replied it was a signal to “alarm the country”.
As the group drew closer to Lexington, the town bell began to clang vapidly, upon which one of the captives proclaimed to the British soldiers “The bell’s a ‘ringing! The towns alarmed, and you’re all dead men! ” The British soldiers gathered and decided not to press further towards Lexington but instead to free the prisoners and head back to warn their commanders. The British confiscated Revere’s horse and rode off to warn the approaching army column. Revere walked to Rev. Jonas Slacker’s house, where Hancock and Adams were staying.
As the battle on Lexington Green unfolded, Revere assisted Hancock and his family in their escape from Lexington, helping to array a trunk of Hammock’s papers. The ride of the three men triggered a flexible system of “alarm and muster” that had been carefully developed months before, in reaction to the colonists’ impotent response to the Powder Alarm of September 1774. This system was an improved version of an old network of widespread notification and fast deployment of local militia forces in times of emergency.
The colonists had periodically used this system all the way back to the early years of Indian wars in the colony, before it fell into disuse in the French and Indian War. In addition to other express eiders delivering messages, bells, drums, alarm guns, bonfires, and a trumpet were used for rapid communication from town to town, notifying the rebels in dozens of eastern Massachusetts villages that they should muster their militias because the regulars in numbers greater than 500 were leaving Boston with possible hostile intentions.
This system was so effective that people in towns 25 miles from Boston were aware of the army’s movements while they were still unloading boats in Cambridge. Unlike in the Powder Alarm, the alarm raised by the three riders successfully allowed the militia to peel the British troops in Concord, after which the British were harried by the growing colonial militia all the way back to Boston. Because Boston was besieged after the battles of Lexington and Concord, Revere could not return to the city, which was now firmly in British hands.
He boarded in Watertown, where he was eventually joined by Rachel and most of his children. After he was denied a commission in the Continental Army, he tried to find other ways to be useful to the rebel cause. He was retained by the provincial congress as a courier, and he printed local currency which the congress used to pay the roofs around Boston. Since there was a desperate shortage of gunpowder, the provincial congress decided in November 1775 to send him to Philadelphia to study the working of the only powder mill in the colonies, in the hopes that he might be able to build a second one in Massachusetts.
Revere called on the mill’s owner, Oswald Eve, armed with a letter from Continental Congressmen Robert Morris and John Dickinson asking Eve to “Cheerfully & from Public Spirited Motives give Mr.. Revere such information as will enable him to Conduct the business on his return home. ” Eve showed Revere around the mill, but refused to give him detailed drawings unless he was first paid a substantial bribe. Despite this chilly reception, Revere was able to discern useful information from the visit He also acquired, through the work of Samuel Adams, plans for another powder mill.
This information enabled Revere to set up a powder mill at Sought. The mill produced tons of gunpowder for the Patriot cause. Revere’s friend and compatriot Joseph Warren was killed during the Battle of Bunker Hill on June 17, 1775. Because soldiers killed in battle were often buried in mass graves thou ceremony, Warren’s grave was unmarked. On March 21, 1 776, several days after the British army left Boston, Revere, Warren’s brothers, and a few friends went to the battlefield and found a grave containing two bodies.
After being buried for 10 months, Warren’s face was unrecognizable, but Revere was able to identify Warren’s body because he had placed a false tooth in Warren’s mouth, and recognized the wire he had used for fastening it. Warren was given a proper funeral and reburied in a marked grave. Upon returning to Boston in 1 776, Revere was commissioned a major of infantry in the Massachusetts militia in that April, and transferred to the artillery a month later.
In November he was promoted to lieutenant colonel, and was stationed at Castle William, defending Boston harbor. He was generally second or third in the chain Of command, and on several occasions he was given command of the fort. He applied his engineering skills to maintaining the fort’s armaments, even designing and building a caliper to accurately measure cannon balls and cannon bore holes. The service at Castle William was relatively isolated, and personality friction prompted some men to file complaints against Revere.
The boredom was alleviated in late August 1777 when Revere was sent with a troop of soldiers to escort prisoners taken in the Battle of Pennington to Boston, where they were confined on board prison ships, and again in September when he was briefly deployed to Rhode Island. In August 1 778 Revere’s regiment served in a combined Franco-American expedition whose objective was to capture the British base at Newport, Rhode Island. His regiment was responsible for erecting and maintaining artillery batteries on Accidence Island.
The attempt was abandoned by the French when their fleet was scattered in a Storm, and Revere’s regiment returned to Boston before the British sorted from Newport to force the Battle of Rhode Island. The British in June 1779 established a new base on Penobscot Bay in present-day Maine. Massachusetts authorities called out the militia, pressed into service available shipping, and organized a major expedition to dislodge the British. The expedition was a complete fiasco: its land and naval commanders squabbled over control of the expedition, and could not agree on strategy or tactics.
The arrival of British reinforcements led to the destruction of the entire Massachusetts fleet. Revere commanded the artillery units for the expedition, and was responsible for organizing the artillery train. He participated in the taking of Bank’s Island, from which artillery batteries could reach the British ships anchored before Fort George. He next oversaw the transport of the guns from Bank’s Island to a new position on the heights of the Bag duce Peninsula that commanded the fort. Although Revere was in favor of storming the fort, Brigadier General Solomon Lovely opted for a siege instead.
After further disagreements on how to proceed between Lovely and fleet commander Dudley Swallowtails, Lovely ceded to return to the transports on August 12, a decision supported by Revere Late the next day British sails were spotted. A mad scramble ensued, and on the 14th the fleet was in retreat heading up the Penobscot River. Revere and his men were put ashore with their stores, and their transports destroyed. At one point Brigadier General Pillage Headwords ordered Revere to send his barge in an attempt to recover a ship drifting toward the enemy position.
Revere at first resisted, but eventually complied, and Headwords told him to expect formal charges over the affair. The incident separated Revere from his men. Moving overland, he eventually managed to regroup most of his troops, and returned to Boston on August 26. A variety of charges were made against Revere, some of which were exaggerated assignments of blame made by enemies he had made in his command at Castle William. The initial hearings on the matter in September 1779 were inconclusive, but he was asked to resign his post.
He repeatedly sought a full court martial to clear his name, but it was not until February 1782 that a court martial heard the issue, exonerating him. During the Revolutionary War, Revere continued his efforts to move upwards in society into the gentry. After his failed efforts to become a military officer he attempted to become a merchant, but was hindered by a number of factors: while he was a fairly well-off member of the artisan class, he did not have the resources to afford the goods he would have sold as a merchant, nor were lenders in England willing to lend him the required startup capital.
Other American merchants of the time collaborated with colleagues in England. However, Revere’s inexperience as a merchant meant that he had not yet established such relationships and was not able to communicate as effectively on unfamiliar matters. Another factor preventing Revere’s success as a merchant was the economic climate Of the time period after the war known as the Critical Period; while the colonies had seen a time of economic growth before the war, the colonies experienced a severe post-war depression, constraining the overall success of his business.
While Revere struggled as a merchant, his success as a silversmith enabled him to pursue and leverage more advanced technological developments for the purposes of mass production. For example, rolling mills greatly improved the productivity f his silver shop and enabled his business to move further away from manufacturing high-end customized products in order to focus instead on the production of a more standardized set of goods. In the 18th century, the standard of living continuously improved in America, as genteel goods became increasingly available to the masses.
Revere responded particularly well to this trend because his business was not solely manufacturing custom, high end purchases. Smaller products like teaspoons and buckles accounted for the majority of his work, allowing him to reach a wide audience with his arks. Revere’s increased efficiency left financial and human resources available for the exploration of other products, which was essential to overcoming the fluctuating post-war economic climate. In addition to increasing production, the flatting mill enabled Revere to move towards a more managerial position.
Artisans and other laborers Were often unable to rise into the ranks of the gentry since they performed manual labor, in contrast with the gentry’s higher emphasis upon intellectual work. But Revere’s increasing product line and revenue stream allowed him to explore there materials and products, such as bell making, copper sheeting and creation of spikes, which opened even greater opportunities. After the war, Revere opened a hardware and home goods store and later became interested in metal work beyond gold and silver.
By 1788 he had invested some of the profits from his expanding silver working trade in the construction of a large furnace. He soon opened an iron foundry in Boson’s North End that produced utilitarian cast iron items such as stove backs and window weights, marketed to a broad segment Of Boson’s population. After catering the iron casting process and realizing greater profits from this new product line, he identified a burgeoning market for church bells in the religious revival known as the Second Great Awakening that followed the war.
Beginning in 1 792 he became one of America’s best-known bell casters, working with sons Paul Jar. And Joseph Warren Revere in the firm Paul Revere ; Sons. This firm cast the first bell made in Boston and ultimately produced hundreds of bells, a number of which remain in operation to this day. In 1794, Revere decided to take the next step in the evolution f his business, again finding a novel use for his furnace that could create a new product line and reach another untapped market for manufactured goods.
Revere expanded his bronze casting work by casting cannon for the federal government, state governments, and private clients. Although the government Often had trouble paying him on time, its large orders inspired him to deepen his contracting and seek additional product lines of interest to the military’. By 1795, a growing percentage of his foundry’s business came from a new product, copper bolts, spikes, and other fittings that he sold to recreants and the Boston naval yard for ship construction.
In 1 801 , Revere became a pioneer in the production of rolled copper, opening North America’s first copper mill south of Boston in Canton. Copper from the Revere Copper Company was used to cover the original wooden dome of the Massachusetts State House in 1802. His copper and brass works eventually grew, through sale and corporate merger, into a large corporation, Revere Copper and Brass, Inc. Revere remained politically active throughout his life. Revere’s business plans in the late asses were often stymied by a shortage of adequate money in circulation.