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James Oglethorpe: “While he was in Parliament an event occurred that The Houses of Parliament turned his attention toward America and caused him to become the founder of Georgia. This is how it happened:
There was a cruel law in England at that time by which a person in debt might be thrown into prison by his creditors and kept there until his debts were somehow paid. Many poor unfortunate people innocent of any crime languished in these debtors prisons.
Oglethorpe had a dear friend a Mr Robert Castell who was a scholar and an artist. He wrote a fine book on architecture which he illustrated with splendid pictures drawn by his own hand. He was so much taken up with writing the book that he neglected his business affairs and when the book was published instead of making money for him it brought him heavily in debt and he was condemned to be cast into the debtors prison. (Source: Georgia History Stories, 1905, by Joseph Harris Chappell, pp. 5-6)