BENJAMIN FRANKLIN (1706-1790)
A gifted child right from birth.
A great inventor he would be.
Today his talents are well known
As the world can clearly see.
Famous for his literature
And his Poor Richard’s Almanac.
He loved being a humorist
Great knowledge he did not lack.
He published his own newspaper
The Pennsylvania Gazette.
And Father Abraham’s Sermon
Plus sheet music, I can’t forget.
Colonial America was
One of Ben’s most famous pieces.
He also published adages
His popularity increases.
A political writer,
Was not his only vocation.
An activist developing
Ideas of an American nation.
Was called the “First American”
A prominent Founding Father.
His wisdom was proverbial
For freedom he would push farther.
His knowledge and diversity
Hailed a genius in electricity.
A scientist and a diplomat spoke
Five languages quite fluently.
He pushed for higher education
An interest in technology.
Recognized as a polymath
A believer in astrology.
He formed the first public library
Our Nation’s first fire station.
Universally admired for
His diplomatic relations.
He was a Postmaster General
When he spearheaded an attack.
Became a national hero
Repealing the British stamp act.
He pushed for a Revolution
From England to break away.
He is the “First American”
A National Hero as they say.
Benjamin Franklin was born on Milk Street in Boston, Massachusetts on January 17, 1706. His father, Josiah Franklin, was a tallow chandler, a maker of candles and soap, whose second wife, Abiah Folger, was Benjamin’s mother. Benjamin was the fifteenth child and youngest son. He attended Boston Latin School but did not graduate.
In 1736 Franklin created the Union Fire Company, the first volunteer firefighting company in America. In the same year he printed a new currency for New Jersey based on innovative anti-counterfeiting techniques which he had devised.
As he matured, Franklin began to concern himself more with public affairs. In 1743, he set forth a scheme for The Academy and College of Philadelphia. He was appointed President of the Academy in November 13, 1749 and it opened on August 13, 1751. At its first commencement, on May 17, 1757, seven men graduated; six with a Bachelor of Arts and one as Master of Arts. It was later merged with the University of the State of Pennsylvania, to become the University of Pennsylvania, today a member of the Ivy League. In 1753, both Harvard and Yale awarded him honorary degrees.
In 1751, Franklin and Dr, Thomas Bond obtained a charter from the Pennsylvania legislature to establish a hospital. Pennsylvania Hospital was the first hospital in what was to become the United
States of America. Benjamin Franklin died on April 17, 1790 at the extremely advanced age (for that time) of 84 (while weighing over 300 pounds), and was interred in Christ Church Burial Ground in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
My personal thoughts, not before this research had I realized what a truly Great Person this man was. His uncanny wisdom surpasses anyone that I have ever read about. His passion and concern for all people, this alone makes him a hero. As in life his death was not surrounded by fanfare his stone simply reads: “Benjamin and Deborah Franklin.”