Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century
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PRATT, Daniel, vagrant, born in Prattville, Chelsea, Massachusetts, about 1809; died in Boston, Massachusetts, 21 June, 1887. He was a carpenter, but did little work, and, his mind becoming affected, he spent his time in wandering about the country, living on charity. He was widely known as the "great American traveller," which was the name by which he called himself. For many years he made the tour of the New England colleges annually, until his visits came to be regarded almost as a regular feature of college life. His addresses, which were sometimes delivered to hundreds of students, and received with great applause, were remarkable for their long words, bombastic phrases, and curious figures of speech; and the same was true of his "proclamations" and other contributions that occasionally found their way into print. One of his delusions was that he had been elected president of the United States but defrauded of the office.
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