Paul Revere, a man of multiple talents, was known as a “Jack Of All Trades”. He was a patriot, silversmith, engraver, and republican, ultimately becoming a hero.
Born in Boston Massachusetts on January 1, 1735, Paul Revere was the son of Apollos De Rivoire, a French Huguenot, and Deborah Hitchbourn. Currently residing in Clark’s Wharf, the Reveres had eight children, with Paul being the third. Early on, Revere learned the value of perseverance, a lesson that would prove crucial in his future endeavors. He received education both at school in Boston and at his father’s shop and the nearby wharves.
As Revere gets older, he takes on various jobs, such as working as a bell ringer for Christ’s Church, which is an Episcopal parish. During the same time that Revere starts his new job, rumors about the Revolutionary War begin to circulate in the town. On the Sunday morning when Revere is scheduled to ring the bell at Christ’s church, a young boy hears the first gunshot of the revolution. At that moment, Revere is unaware that his important role lies within the revolution.
On July 22, 1754, Reveres father passed away peacefully in his sleep and was laid to rest in the Old Granary. Paul experienced deep sorrow over the loss of his father, as they shared a close bond akin to friendship rather than a typical father-son relationship. With his fathers passing, Paul assumed the role of the family patriarch, shouldering additional responsibilities and working tirelessly to provide for his sizable household. Eventually, the mounting stress began to take its toll on him, making his involvement in the French conflict perhaps a welcome respite. In 1756, he made his long-awaited return.
On August 4, 1757, Paul Revere wedded Sara Orne, also known as “Sary” to Revere. After several years of marriage, Revere decided it was time for a change and joined the masons. It was through this affiliation that he encountered James Otis and Joseph Warren, both individuals of great significance to him. In 1761, the same year when James Otis delivered his renowned speech, Revere engaged in a fight with his cousin Francis’ spouse. The exact reasons for this altercation remain unknown; however, considering Revere’s non-confrontational nature, it can be assumed they were reasonable. Throughout all this, Revere continued to craft silver goods.
Smallpox affects the Reveres’ household and the rest of Boston. Paul Revere adored his children and couldn’t bear the thought of losing them; he fondly referred to them as his little lambs. Fortunately, none of them passed away, including Sara.
On November 5, 1764, Pope Day spiraled out of control and resulted in riots that led to numerous deaths and gruesome injuries. Revere’s reaction to these events was one of outrage. However, this marked the final instance of an uncontrolled traditional Pope Day in Boston. The Reveres were going through difficult times due to the responsibility of supporting their five children. As a result, Revere had to explore new professions in order to make ends meet. He became involved in various revolutionary clubs, tried his hand at engraving and dentistry, but ultimately found the most success as a silversmith.
On Friday, September 30, 1768, the warships were dispatched from England. They were moored and stationed around the town. The conflict persisted, eventually culminating in a violent confrontation on King Street. This event was immortalized through an engraving by Revere that would forever be etched in memory.
In April of 1770, Paul Revere chose to relocate his family from Clark’s Wharf to North Square. At their new home, they would soon gain more animals, including horses, sheep, and other livestock. Life was enjoyable at their new farm, but tragedy struck once again. It was on May 3, 1773 that Sary passed away, leaving Paul devastated. With his beloved wife gone, he had to singlehandedly raise their eight children. Sary was laid to rest in the Old Granary.
Despite the shocking speed of it, Revere gets married soon after Sary’s unexpected death. On September 23, 1773, Revere weds Rachel Walker. Just a few months later, in November of that year, Paul proudly takes his first ride in defense of his country. Alongside five other riders, he is selected to spread a warning to neighboring seaports that they may be approached to unload at their wharves. While he does participate in the Boston Tea Party, Paul then embarks on a journey to Philadelphia.
After returning from Philadelphia, Revere discovers that Boston has descended into chaos. Despite this, he continues his work as a silversmith and engraver but remains prepared to take action if necessary. The current governor, Hutchinson, who is also Reveres cousin, hands over control of Boston to General Gage before departing for London, never to return. The British soldiers regain authority in the town, but Revere manages to gather information about their plans.
As Robert Newman hangs the lanterns, and Revere crosses to Charleston, he carries the Alarum to Lexington and is captured by the British. Revere finds himself in quite a dilemma, but luckily they release him and he returns to John Hancock and Sam Adams. He protects Hancock’s trunk and heads into Cambridge. Taking a risk, he goes to Boston to ensure his family successfully obtains a pass.
In May of this year, Revere began printing money and creating printing plates. Additionally, he was responsible for designing the first official seal used for the colonies, which is still in use by Massachusetts today. In a related incident, one of Revere’s friends from Boston, Dr. Church, was caught red-handed by George Washington engaging in criminal correspondence with the enemy.
By November of 1776, the Americans were in desperate need of help.
Gunpowder was needed, so Paul Revere was enlisted to provide it. He manufactured powder in his mill until a tragic incident occurred in 1779, resulting in an explosion.
After the British rule under Gage and the departure of the Tories from Boston, Revere and his family come back to North square. Serving as a dentist, it is Revere’s responsibility to recognize deceased individuals, including his friend from the masons, Joseph Warren.
Later that year, George Washington himself asked Revere to go out to Castle Island to repair the cannon, an act which was considered a great honor. However, this honor was overshadowed by sadness when his 73-year-old mother passed away on May 26th. Revere had already experienced the pain of losing his wife and father, but this loss affected him deeply as he held a great reverence for the concept of family. Despite his sorrow, Revere continued his work with the government at Castle Island before eventually deciding to pack up and return home once again.
Despite facing another wave of difficult times, Revere is once again compelled to seek additional employment. While attempting commercial work, silver remains his primary source of income. Furthermore, Revere embarks on a battle to become a court marshal, endeavors to restore his reputation, and dedicates himself to incessantly corresponding with his cousins in France and Guernsey.
Paul establishes a foundry in Boston and casts the inaugural bell in the city.
Paul Revere, having lived more than half of his life, now takes some time to relax. He engages in civic projects and takes care of the well-being of his children, grandchildren, and friends. Additionally, he uncovers the secret behind rolling copper and creates a flourishing industry.
Paul Revere passed away on May 10, 1818.