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Horace Greeley

      Horace Greeley was one of the few persons whose manhood fulfilled the precocious promise of his youth. He could read before he could speak plainly, and at the age of six he had declared that his purpose in life was to be a printer. At eleven he tried to be apprenticed at the village printing-office and was unsuccessful; at the age of fourteen he was taken on as an apprentice in the office of the Northern Spectator, at East Poultney, Vt.

      His family were of Scotch-Irish origin, but had lived in the northern part of New Hampshire for several generations. Horace was born in Amherst, N. H., February 3, 1811. So quick of apprehension was he, and so active was his intellect, that the commonest of common-school education was for him sufficient. His schooling was only that which he could obtain during three or four months in winter; for at other seasons of the year he labored in the field with his father and brothers; and when he went to be an apprentice for five years in the printing-office, he was paid a very slender pittance, the greater part of which he gave to his father, whose income was probably next to nothing.

      In June, 1830, the newspaper office in which young Greeley was learning his trade became insolvent, and Greeley, then in his twentieth year, was released from his indentures. He tramped from office to office as a journeyman printer, and his father having removed to the then "new country of western Pennsylvania," the youngster, with ten dollars in his poc...

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