Topic: EconomicsTrade

Last updated: March 31, 2019

Benjamin Franklin was born on January 17, 1706 in Boston Massachusetts.

He was one of seventeen other brothers and sisters. His father, Josiah Franklin, who emigrated from Oxford shire, England, worked as a soap boiler and tallow chandler. Benjamin’s mother, Abiah Folger, was from Nantucket but her family derived from England as well.

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Benjamin Franklin’s entire life, which lasted almost the entire eighteenth century, was based upon order and systematic discipline in addition to his dependence on wisdom and intelligence. Franklin was sincere, honest, and was apt to self-examination. He acquired long lasting friends from persons of every age. Franklin found unquestionable delight in living. Benjamin Franklin started attending school at the age of 8 and was at the head of his class by the end of his first year. After only attending his first school for one year he moved on to Hello math and arithmetic school. He failed out of that school by the time he was 10. He then quit school completely in order to assist his father in the soap and candle making business.

At age 12 he moved on to be an apprentice to his older brother James, who was a printer. Soon Franklin had ambitions to write and by age 16 he had written a series of letters by an imaginary author. The letters were printed in the New England Courant, which was published by his brother. Still pursuing his writing career, he ran away to Philadelphia and continued working in the printing business. He arrived in 1725 with one Dutch dollar and one copper shilling. By 1729, he had bought and published The Pennsylvania Gazette.

He then married his landlady’s daughter, Deborah Reed. In the next seventeen years Franklin had three children, published the first Poor Richards Almanac, and invented the Pennsylvania fireplace, among many other things. In 1747, Franklin began his electrical experiments and then retired from the printing trade. His book, Experiments and Observations on Electricity, was published soon after that. The Stamp Act was passed in 1765 and Franklin wrote anonymously in London newspapers against the act, which was repealed the next year. In 1771, he wrote the first part of his autobiography, three years before his wife died.

In 1776, Franklin, along with Adams, Livingston, Jefferson and Sherman, drafted the Declaration of Independence. It was adopted on July 4, 1776. Later in 1776, Franklin was elected as the Pennsylvania delegate to the Constitutional Convention and appointed one of the three commissioners to the French Court.

He soon would become the sole minister plenipotentiary at the French court. He then wrote the second part of his autobiography and by 1787 he had been elected President of Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery. Later on that year he was a delegate at the Constitutional Convention and made the closing speech.

In 1788, he made his last will and testament and began the third part of his autobiography. Benjamin Franklin died on April 17, 1790. He was proceeded from the State House to the Christ Church burial ground by some 20,000 people. He was laid there to rest with his wife. Franklin was talented in many areas of life.

He mastered the skill of printing, became a well-known philosopher, and he was also extremely gifted in the political field. In addition, Franklin was very involved in physics. He performed countless experiments and was successful in validating his hypotheses. There was very little known about the nature of heat until the eighteenth century.

Franklin was one of the pioneers in this field. He discovered a great deal about thermal conduction, evaporation, radiation, and thermal absorption. The knowledge about materials that conduct electricity and thermal energy is largely due to him. Water was used in infinitely the seventeen hundred, but there was still much to be learned about water. Franklin answered many of the questions that water posed. He did experiments that showed the multiple effect of oil in water.

He also constructed a miniature towing tank that proved that the drag of an item pulled in water increased as the depth decreased. Franklin worked on his first electrical experiment in 1747 and was immediately intrigued. He continued with his electrical experiments including electrifying his kite string in a storm. He also examined how the storms worked. Franklin learned about how “air ways” cause different weather and storms. Franklin’s life was composed greatly of understanding of phenomenon’s that baffled others. This pushed him to be successful in many walks of life.

His success was verified throughout his life. By the time he died, Franklin was honored by membership in twenty colleges or learned societies.


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