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Warren, Joseph

WARREN, JOSEPH (1741-1775), American politician, was born at Roxbury, Massachusetts, on the nth of June 1741. He graduated from Harvard College in 1759, taught in a school at Roxbury in 1760-1761, studied medicine, and began to practise in Boston in 1764. The Stamp Act agitation aroused his interest in public questions. He soon became associated with Samuel Adams, John Adams and Josiah Quincy, Jr., as a leader of the popular party, and contributed articles and letters to the Boston Gazette over the signature " True Patriot." The efforts of Samuel Adams to secure the appointment of committees of correspondence met with his hearty support, and he and Adams were the two leading members of the first Boston committee of correspondence, chosen in 1772. As chairman of a committee appointed for the purpose, he drafted the famous " Suffolk Resolves," which were unanimously adopted by a convention at Milton (q.v.) on the gth of September 1 7 74. These " resolves " urged forcible opposition to Great Britain if it should prove to be necessary, pledged submission to such measures as the Continental Congress might recommend, and favoured the calling of a provincial congress. Warren was a member of the first three provincial congresses (1774-1775), president of the third, and an active member of the committee of public safety. He took an active part in the fighting on the igth of April, was appointed major-general of the Massachusetts troops, next in rank to Artenias Ward, on the 14th of June 1775; and three days later, before his commission was made out, he took part as a volunteer, under the orders of Putnam and Prescott, in the battle of Bunker Hill (Breed's Hill), where he was killed. Next to the Adamses, Warren was the most influential leader of the extreme Whig faction in Massachusetts. His tragic death strengthened their zeal for" the popular cause and helped to prepare the way for the acceptance of the Declaration of Independence. Warren's speeches are typical examples of the old style of American political eloquence. His bestknown orations were those delivered in Old South Church on the second and fifth anniversaries (1772 and 1775) of the " Boston Massacre."

The standard biography is Richard Frothingham's Life and Times of Joseph Warren (Boston, 1865).

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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