Printed Works

Common Sense and Plain Truth

Philadelphia printers issued works that stoked debate over the American Revolution on both sides of the Atlantic. In the early months of 1776, Thomas Paine issued his clarion call for independence, Common Sense, and loyalist James Chalmers his pointed rebuke, titled Plain Truth, through the printer and bookseller Robert Bell on Third Street in Philadelphia. London publisher John Almon bundled the two works in this June 1776 edition for British readers who wondered "whether Americans are, or are not prepared for a state of independence."