In his 84 years, Benjamin Franklin wore many hats: printer, inventor, author, diplomat, and Founding Father. He was born in Boston in 1706 and went on to become one of the most influential figures of the American Enlightenment.
A man of many talents, he was a prolific writer and an inventive thinker; he developed a new type of stove, helped to devise a system of citywide firefighters, and even created his own musical instrument.
Who was Benjamin Franklin?
Benjamin Franklin is one of the most famous and well-known Founding Fathers of the United States. He was a printer, publisher, author, inventor, scientist, diplomat, and abolitionist. Franklin became an apprentice at his brother’s printing shop when he was only 12 years old.
He went on to write many articles and pamphlets that were critical of the British government, which eventually led him to become one of the most important leaders of the American Revolution.
After the war, Franklin helped draft the Constitution and served as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention. He also served as Minister to France and was a signer of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
Franklin’s early life and apprenticeship
Benjamin Franklin was born in Boston, Massachusetts on January 17, 1706. His father, Josiah Franklin, was a tallow chandler, candle maker, and soap boiler who had immigrated to Boston from England. His mother, Abiah Folger, was the daughter of Peter Folger, one of the original Puritan settlers of New England.
Benjamin was the fifteenth of seventeen children born to Josiah and Abiah, and he would be the only one of his siblings to receive any formal education. When Benjamin was ten years old, his father apprenticed him to his older brother James, a printer and newspaper publisher. Benjamin did not enjoy working as an apprentice and often argued with James, but he did develop a love for reading and writing during his time as an apprentice.
He also began publishing articles under the pseudonym “Silence Dogood” in James’s newspaper without his brother’s knowledge.
After serving out his apprenticeship, Benjamin left for Philadelphia in 1723. He would eventually return to Boston, but he would always consider Philadelphia to be his home.
Diplomat: Franklin was a diplomat in France
Benjamin Franklin was an American diplomat who served in France from 1776 to 1785. He was a key figure in the American Revolution and helped to secure French aid for the fledgling United States.
After the war, he played a major role in negotiating the Treaty of Paris, which formally ended the conflict. Franklin also helped to negotiate the Louisiana Purchase, which doubled the size of the United States. He is widely regarded as one of the most accomplished diplomats in American history.
Inventor: some of Franklin’s most famous inventions
Benjamin Franklin is one of the most celebrated inventors in American history. He is best known for his inventions related to electricity, including the lightning rod, bifocals, and the Franklin stove. But Franklin was also a prolific inventor in other areas, including transportation, music, optics, and even personal hygiene. Here are some of Benjamin Franklin’s most famous inventions.
The lightning rod is one of Benjamin Franklin’s most well-known inventions. He came up with the idea while watching a storm one night and wondering why lightning always struck the tallest objects. He realized that if he could create a tall object that conducted electricity, it would act as a sort of “lightning rod” and protect buildings from being struck by lightning.
The first lightning rod was installed on top of Franklin’s own home in Philadelphia in 1752.
Franklin as the printer and businessman
Benjamin Franklin was not only a renowned scientist and inventor, he was also a successful printer and businessman.
Franklin started his printing business in Philadelphia in 1728 and quickly became one of the most successful printers in the colonies. He printed everything from newspapers to books to pamphlets, and even had a hand in writing some of the material himself. His business was so successful that he eventually opened branches in other cities, including New York and London.
In addition to his printing business, Franklin also owned several other businesses, including a bookstore, an insurance company, and a real estate development firm. He was known for being a shrewd businessman, and his businesses made him one of the wealthiest men in the colonies.
Despite his success as a businessman, Franklin always considered himself first and foremost a scientist and inventor.
Writer: from Poor Richard’s Almanack to his autobiography
Benjamin Franklin was one of the most prolific writers of his time. He is best known for his work Poor Richard’s Almanack, which he published annually from 1732 to 1758. The Almanack was a collection of proverbs, weather forecasts, and other information that was useful to farmers and tradesmen.
However, it also contained some of Franklin’s own moral and political philosophy. In addition to the Almanack, Franklin also wrote many essays, letters, and pamphlets on a variety of topics. He even published an autobiography, which was quite unusual for 18th-century America.
In all of his writing, Franklin sought to educate and improve his readers. He is still considered one of America’s greatest writers and thinkers.
Politician: Franklin as a statesman and founding father
Benjamin Franklin was one of the most influential figures in American history. He was a leading author, printer, politician, freemason, postmaster, scientist, inventor, humorist, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat. As a founding father, he helped to draft the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
He also played a major role in the American Revolution and the development of the new nation. Franklin was a true renaissance man who made significant contributions in many different fields. He is remembered as an important statesman and founding father of the United States.
Franklin’s life was full of accomplishments and he is still celebrated today for his many contributions to society. After his death in 1790, Franklin’s legacy continued to be honored.
In 1828, the University of Pennsylvania founded the first American school of science and engineering, which was later renamed the Benjamin Franklin School of Engineering and Applied Science in his honor.
In 1906, a statue of Franklin was erected in Philadelphia’s Franklin Square.
And in 2009, the United States Postal Service issued a postage stamp commemorating the 300th anniversary of Franklin’s birth.
Franklin’s legacy continues to inspire people around the world. He is truly one of America’s greatest heroes.