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Thomas Jefferson (April 13 1743 – July 4, 1826) was an American Founding Father, the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), The Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom (1777) and the founder of the University of Virginia … oh yeah, and the 3rd third President of the United States (1801–1809).

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Phineas Taylor Barnum (July 5, 1810 – April 7, 1891) was an American showman and businessman remembered for promoting celebrated hoaxes and for founding the Barnum & Bailey Circus.Although Barnum was also an author, publisher, philanthropist, and for some time a politician, he said of himself, “I am a showman by profession…and all the gilding shall make nothing else of me”,and his personal aims were “to put money in his own coffers”. Barnum is widely, but erroneously, credited with coining the phrase “There’s a sucker born every minute”.

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Eli Whitney (December 8, 1765 – January 8, 1825) was an American inventor best known for inventing the cotton gin. This was one of the key inventions of the Industrial Revolution and shaped the economy of the Antebellum South.Whitney’s invention made upland short cotton into a profitable crop, which strengthened the economic foundation of slavery in the United States. Despite the social and economic impact of his invention, Whitney lost many profits in legal battles over patent infringement for the cotton gin. Thereafter, he turned his attention into securing contracts with the government in the manufacture of muskets for the newly formed United States Army. He continued making arms and inventing until his death in 1825.

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Roger Sherman (April 19, 1721 – July 23, 1793) was an early American lawyer and politician, as well as a Founding Father of the United States. He served as the first mayor of New Haven, Connecticut, and served on the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration of Independence, and was also a representative and senator in the new republic. He was the only person to sign all four great state papers of the U.S.: the Continental Association, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution. Thomas Jefferson said of him: “That is Mr. Sherman, of Connecticut, a man who never said a foolish thing in his life.”

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Noah Webster (October 16, 1758 – May 28, 1843), was a lexicographer, textbook pioneer, English-language spelling reformer, political writer, editor, and prolific author. He has been called the “Father of American Scholarship and Education”. His blue-backed speller books taught five generations of American children how to spell and read, secularizing their education. According to Ellis (1979) he gave Americans “a secular catechism to the nation-state”. Webster’s name has become synonymous with “dictionary” in the United States, especially the modern Merriam-Webster dictionary that was first published in 1828 as An American Dictionary of the English Language. He is considered one of the Founding Fathers of the nation

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George Washington (February 22, 1732 – December 14, 1799) was the first President of the United States (1789–1797), the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He presided over the convention that drafted the United States Constitution, which replaced the Articles of Confederation and remains the supreme law of the land.

Martha Dandridge Custis Washington (June 13 1731– May 22, 1802) was the wife of George Washington. Although the title was not coined until after her death, Martha Washington is considered to be the first First Lady of the United States. During her lifetime she was known as “Lady Washington.”

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Howard Phillips Lovecraft August 20, 1890 – March 15, 1937) was an American author who achieved posthumous fame through his influential works of horror fiction. Virtually unknown and only published in pulp magazines before he died in poverty, he is now regarded as one of the most significant 20th-century authors in his genre.

 

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