After the Revolution
Paul Revere believed that industrialization and a robust economy would create a powerful nation. As an entrepreneur he saw business opportunities everywhere. He observed a shortage of products and started importing them from England. He sold hardware and household goods in a store which he ran until 1789.
With the help of his sons Revere started experimenting with different metals other than silver. It is believed that at least two of his sons Paul Jr. and Joseph were junior partners in the business. Joseph studied bell casting in Europe and Paul Jr. learned with bell founder George Holbrook.
In 1787 he set up an iron and brass foundry in Boston and by 1788 he was manufacturing iron bolts, nails, braces, spikes and other brass fittings for the nascent navy industry. Paul Revere & Sons became a well known name in metal casting. This firm cast the first bell made in Boston and manufactured more than 900 bells. Another company, Revere Copper Company was incorporated in 1828. Joseph Revere was its president for 60 years.
As the new country developed he saw the increasing demand for copper which was until then imported from England. Revere had already earned a comfortable fortune and in 1801, at age 65 he opened the nation’s first copper rolling mill in Canton, Massachusetts. He saw the economic promise in the idea of replacing corrosive iron fixtures on ships with rustproof copper.
The venture involved considerable financial risk. He invested $25,000 of his own money and was encouraged by a $10,000 loan from the federal government and 19,000 tons of copper. He provided copper sheeting for the construction of vessels including the U.S.S Constitution. In 1803 he supplied the copper to cover the wooden dome of the Massachusetts State House. Later, his company also manufactured boilers for experimental steamships, cannons and the copper dome of the New York City Hall.
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