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Thomas Paine to the Citizens of Pennsylvania
1805 - PAINE, Thomas. Thomas Paine to the Citizens of Pennsylvania, on the Proposal for Calling a Convention. Philadelphia: Wm. Duane, 1805. Octavo, period-style full speckled sheep gilt, red morocco spine label, uncut; pp. 30. $12,500.First edition of this open letter from Paine to Pennsylvanians regarding the proposed convention to form a new state constitution. Paine's final published work, this pamphlet is quite scarce.The first Pennsylvania state constitution, of 1776, was among the most democratic of state constitutions. It was replaced in 1790 by a conservative constitution drawn up by the ascendant Federalists. The 1805 movement was a Jeffersonian reaction. In this pamphlet, Paine makes an argument attempting to prove the unconstitutionality of the power assumed by the New York legislature to grant charters. Paine was by this time a resident of New Rochelle, New York, where he lived for the remainder of his life. Paine writes: "As I resided in the capital of your state (Philadelphia) in the 'time that tried men's souls,' and all my political writings, during the revolutionary war, were written in that city, it seems natural for me to look back on the place of my political and literary birth, and feel an interest for its happiness."During August, still in New Rochelle, Paine also wrote a pamphlet""the last he ever published""in support of the call for constitutional reform in Pennsylvania. He reminded Pennsylvania readers that the spirit of the Revolution was endangered in their state. Whereas their constitution of 1776 was second to none, the revised constitution of 1790 had created a form of government whose working principles were more English and monarchic than American". He roasted the old monarchic practice voting by orders or estates and argued instead for universal suffrage""among men, at least" (Keane, Tom Paine, 511-12). Rare, with only six copies reported in OCLC. Shaw & Shoemaker 9089. Sabin 58240. Minor toning and foxing. A very good uncut copy of this Paine rarity. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Bauman Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2016-11-24           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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