Now Available/Launch Party: America’s Forgotten Founding Father: A Novel Based on the Life of Filippo Mazzei by Rosanne Welch

Now available in print and Kindle Pre-Order from

* See below for Launch Party Information

I’m deeply pleased to announce the publication of my novel America’s Forgotten Founding Father: A Novel Based on the Life of Filippo Mazzei as part of the Mentoris Series of books celebrating the Italian-American experience and foster an appreciation of history and culture. 

With all the hoopla surrounding Alexander Hamilton (thanks to Lin Manuel Miranda’s seminal musical), I was just as surprised to learn about this Italian-American patriot who owned the plantation next door to Thomas Jefferson – but chose not to own slaves.  Rather he worked at establishing a vineyard with the help of other Italian immigrants (whose children and grandchildren helped populate Virginia according to records kept at Monticello).  

Alongside Jefferson, Mazzei wrote articles in support of the Revolution and is now credited with coining the phrase “All Men are Created Equal”, which Jefferson found so inspiring he added it to his Declaration. As the Revolutionary War waged on, Jefferson and other Founding Fathers asked Mazzei to return to Europe and solicit funds, weapons and other support from the leading countries of Europe, which he gladly did, though it separated him from the beloved country he had adopted.  

Mazzei cover

Launch Party

If you’re in Los Angeles I invite you to join us as we toast the launch of this wonderful series of books. We’ll hear from publisher Robert Barbera, editor Ken Lazebnik and then I and Kate Fuglei (Fermi’s Gifts) will read short passages from our work.  

Thursday February 15th at 6pm
Italian Cultural Institute in Westwood
1023 Hilgard Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90024. (Map)

Parking on the street or in local lots.

This event is by Invite Only. Please RSVP by February 10, 2018 to

Print Edition | Kindle Edition
* Also available in Nook and Apple iBooks formats

His loyalty lasted a lifetime…

Surgeon, merchant, vintner, and writer Filippo Mazzei influenced American business, politics, and philosophy. Befriending Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson, Mazzei was a strong liaison for others in Europe. Mazzei was Jefferson’s inspiration for the most famous line in the Declaration of Independence: “All men are created equal.”

Clearly, Mazzei had a gift of language and often used his words to share his ideas about religious freedom. Mazzei encouraged other Italians still living overseas to join him in a country rich with opportunity and promise. Often, when returning from Italy, he booked passages on ships for people who desired to travel to America and employed them on his estate—just to ensure a better, more fruitful life for everyone. During those travels, Mazzei found himself at the center of many fights for freedom.

He was truly a friend to freedom around the world.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *