This series will focus on material I found while researching my book, America’s Forgotten Founding Father: A Novel Based on the Life of Filippo Mazzei.
While I only used a portion of my total research, there are a host of little tidbits of information on this amazing man which I wanted to share here. — Rosanne.
Filippo Mazzei was born in 1730 in Tuscany, Italy. He studied medicine in his home country, but soon moved to London to try his hand at being a wine merchant. Thanks to his business connections, he befriended Thomas Jefferson, the two exchanged letters for several years before actually meeting. In 1773, Filippo – who had at that time adopted the name Philip – moved to Virginia.
There he purchased some property and started his next phase in life as a farmer and revolutionary. During this time Filippo worked closely with Jefferson. The two would create and print various propaganda on independence and religious freedom, and he was among a select group who Jefferson asked to take a look at a draft of the Declaration of Independence.