Thompson, Daniel P. (Daniel Pierce), 1795-1868

Daniel Pierce Thompson was born in Charlestown, Massachusetts, October 1, 1795, the son of Daniel and Rebecca (Parker) Thompson. When he was five years old the family moved to Berlin, Vermont. He entered Middlebury College, ca. 1817 and graduated in 1820. Upon graduation he spent several years in Virginia working as a tutor and studying law. He was admitted to the bar in 1823 and returned to Montpelier, Vermont, to practice law. Additionally he became active in local and state government serving as judge of probate for Washington County, 1837-1842; clerk of the county court, 1844-1846; secretary of state for Vermont, 1853-1855.

While involved in politics and law Thompson was also pursuing a career in writing which he probably began while a student at Middlebury College. The first piece attributed to him was an article on Montpelier, published in 1824 by Zadock Thompson in his Gazetteer of Vermont. His next writing project was the compilation of The Laws of Vermont Including the Year 1834, published for the state in 1835. The publication in 1835 of May Martin, or the Money Diggers, established Thompson as a popular fiction writer. He continued to produce novels sporadically through 1864.


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