It had a powerful effect. General Washington had it distributed to his soldiers. I can imagine them reading it to themselves and to each other. George Trevelyan in his History of the American Revolution wrote
"It would be difficult to name any human composition which has had an effect at once so instant, so extended and so lasting"
That pamphlet is the real inspiration for this blog and the reason I so hubristically use Tom's name. If the internet had existed then, he would probably have blogged it without the aid of Mr R Bell of Philadelphia, especially as being his publisher put Mr Bell at such risk. Tom himself remained safely anonymous at that point.
Common Sense was the pre-digital equivalent of the most successful blog post imaginable. I would be content to have one-millionth part of the good influence on the minds of men it did.
Happy anniversary, Tom.