ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Who was Benjamin Franklin?

Updated on December 3, 2016

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), the American statesman, writer and scientist , was born at Boston, Massachusetts. At twelve years of age he was apprenticed to the printing trade, and as a young man worked as a printer in Philadelphia and in London, where he spent two years. He returned to America in 1726 to run the Pennsylvania Gazette (1729) and to first make a name for himself by publishing Poor Richard's Almanac (1732), a kind of magazine full of homely sayings and funny quips, which had a big circulation for years. He began to take an interest in public affairs and became clerk to the Assembly, postmaster o[ Philadelphia and, in 1753, joint controller of the Colonial Postal Services.

Self-educated and bursting with ideas to improve his fellow human beings, he founded societies, organized America's first circulating library, a hospital, fire-fighting measures, volunteer regiments, street-cleaning and street-paving; he also founded an academy which developed into the University of Pennsylvania. Turning hi s attention to science, he made researches that proved the distinction between positive and negative electricity and that lightning and electricity are identical.

Always practical, he suggested the use of lightning conductors for tall buildings. Further, he discovered the course of the Gulf Stream and the paths of storms across North America. His scientific papers aroused great interest in England and France and he was made a member of the Royal Society.

In 1757 this gifted ingenious man was sent to England to put Pennsylvania 's case against the Penn family in a dispute over taxes; he succeeded in his mission and during a five years' stay received honorary degrees from Oxford and Edinburgh. In 1764 he was back again to contest Parliament's taxing or the colonies; he appeared before the House of Commons and put the case so well that the Stamp Act was repealed in 1766. He himself was still a loyalist, but as the difference between the British government and the colonies became more bitter, he gave his mind and energies to serving his country and he took a leading part in drawing up the Declaration of Independence.

After war broke out, he was sent in 1776 as delegate to Paris, where his reputation as scientist and philosopher, together with his dignified yet warm, humorous personality, brought him popularity and success.

He secured the treaty of alliance with France that contributed greatly to America's victory and achievement of independence. He stayed on in Paris as United States minister and negotiated commercial treaties with Prussia and Sweden before returning home in 1785. He was now world famous and a national hero beloved by all classes. Elected President of the state of Pennsylvania, he helped to draw up the constitution of the United States, while still writing scientific papers and working in Congress for the abolition of slavery up to the time of his death.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)