John Howard Payne
American actor and writerDied when: 60 years 306 days (730 months)
Star Sign: Gemini
John Howard Payne (June 9, 1791 – April 10, 1852) was an American actor, poet, playwright, and author who had nearly two decades of a theatrical career and success in London.
He is today most remembered as the creator of "Home!Sweet Home!", a song he wrote in 1822 that became widely popular in the United States and the English-speaking world.
Its popularity was revived during the American Civil War, as troops on both sides embraced it.After his return to the United States in 1832, Payne spent time with the Cherokee Indians in the Southeast and interviewed many elders.
Intending to write about them, he amassed material about their culture, language and society, which have been useful to scholars.
But his published theory that suggested their origin as one of the Ten Lost Tribes of ancient Israel has been thoroughly disproved.
At that time, European Americans were still strongly influenced by a Biblical basis of history in trying to understand origins of the peoples in the Americas.
Friends helped gain Payne's appointment in 1842 as American Consul to Tunis, where he served for nearly 10 years until his death.
Although he was first buried there, in 1883 his remains were returned to the United States and buried in Washington, D.C.
This was paid for by philanthropist W.W.Corcoran.In 1970 Payne was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.