Stirring up a little trouble (or a lot!) has a long and illustrious history in the state of Massachusetts. From the famous figures to the obscure, from the patriot Sam Adams to bearded Joe Palmer, the twenty men and women profiled in this collection of historical biographies all dared to advocate for some form of freedom, some measure of liberty.
Revolutionary War patriot and printer Isaiah Thomas proved that indeed the pen is mightier than the sword. In the same conflict, Deborah Samson so believed in America that she masqueraded as a man to join the struggle against the British. In 1845, Margaret Fuller published a book that later seen as an early blueprint for the women's rights movement. In Massachusetts Troublemakers, Paul Della Valle brings these characters to life with colorful tales of rabble-rousing and pot-stirring, a little bit of dancing and drinking, and even a bicycle race, all complemented by twenty black-and-white archival photos.
Massachusetts native Paul Della Valle is a life-long journalist. He has been a general assignment reporter, investigative reporter, editor and publisher, and his work has won dozens of wards from the Associated Press, United Press International, and the New England Press Association.
The newspaper Della Valle founded in 1996 and published until 2005, The Lancaster Times & Clinton Courier, was twice a runner-up for New England Newspaper of the Year. Della Valle joined the staff of the Worcester Telegram and Gazette in 1985 and was promoted to featured columnist in 1989. He became editor of Worcester Magazine in 1993. He has also served as a Central Massachusetts correspondent for the Boston Globe, and his work has appeared in Readers Digest and several of the Chicken Soup for the Soul books.
Della Valle has published two books, My Favorite Column of Yours Was the One Your Wife Wrote and Welcome to Your Midlife Crisis. His awards have included being named Columnist of the Year twice and best humor columnist once by the New England Press Association, and a first-place citation for feature writing in the largest newspaper division from the New England Associated Press. His story on candlepin bowling in Massachusetts and the role of Central Massachusetts men at the Civil War's Battle of Ball's Bluff won awards for history reporting from the New England Press Association in 2001 and 2002.
Della Valle is currently an instructor at Northeastern University's School of Journalism in Boston, and he has also taught writing at Clark University in Worcester. He sings, plays guitar, and writes songs for the Worcester County Bluegrass All Stars, who have recorded two albums.
Della Valle lives with his wife, Karen Sharpe, a poet and journalist, and their children on an old farm in Sterling, Massachusetts.