Benjamin Franklin-Benjamin Franklin plumbing

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Benjamin Franklin


The history of Physics is incomplete without the mention of Benjamin Franklin . Franklin was an author, scientist, statesman, inventor and also a diplomat. His pursuits in science ley to the invention of electricity. The great man was born in Boston where he started his early life and formal education before moving to Philadelphia where he established his business empire. He was part of the team that led to the attainment of independence in 1776  where he served in the continental congress.


Benjamin Franklin, Benjamin Franklin plumbing
Benjamin Franklin

In 1783 he was an active negotiator in the Treaty of Paris which led to the end of the Revolutionary War.

Benjamin Franklin

Early life :

Benjamin Franklin was born on 17th Jan 1706 in Boston. His father Josiah Franklin had 2 wives and Benjamin was the 15th child in the family of 17. Franklin was enrolled at the Boston Latin School and despite him being very bright in school he stopped at the age of 10 to help his father in his Candle and Soap shop.

At the age of 12, Franklin moved to work with his brother James who had a printing shop. He learned how to write and publish. Young Franklin had a particular interest in politics. It was during this period that he began his writing and publishing journey. He, however, had one problem, his brother James was mistreating him and on many occasions refused to publish his work.


Tired of his brother’s behavior Franklin Fled Boston in 1773 moving to New York before settling in Philadelphia where he established himself. In Philadelphia, he was employed in a printing shop before traveling to London in 1724 where he was also employed by a publishing company. 
After spending 2 years in England Franklin returned to Philadelphia in 1726 where he opened his printing shop. His printing business became very successful to an extend that he contracted to print currency and government books. By 1729 Franklin was the publisher of a colonial paper called the Pennsylvania Gazette which he contributed most of the content.

In 1730 Franklin married Deborah after she had divorced her husband. The two had one daughter named Sarah. Deborah died in 1774 from a stroke. During this period Franklin had a son named William who was born out of wedlock. William later became the Royal Governor for New Jersey in 1763.

Franklin rose into fame in 1733 after publishing a book called ‘Poor Richard’s Almanack’ which was published annually from 1733 to 1758.

Also visit ­čĹë: Nikola Tesla

Benjamin Franklin

Electricity and other inventions :

In 1748 Benjamin Franklin was a well-established businessman. During this period he handed over his printing business to a partner so that he could concentrate on science. In 1752 he made a world-changing discovery after conducting the Kite-and-key experiment which was meant to demonstrate that lightning was electricity. After the discovery, Franklin went ahead to invent a lightning rod. 
His observations shaped the way the world understood electricity and even shaped the language used around electricity. Franklin was the first scientist to discover that electric charges cannot be created. He noted that an electric charge can only be collected. This is what was later used in the ‘Law of Conservation of Electric Charge.’


Franklin’s inventions were compiled and published in a book called Experiments and Observations on Electricity in the UK in 1751. During this time he had come up with electricity-related terms such as electrify, conductor and charge. He also invented a battery that would be used in the storage of electrical charges. During the invention, he also proved to people that electricity was one fluid with both positive and negative currents.

In the 1750s Franklin was very busy with his scientific inventions and carrying out proofs that lightning was electricity. 
According to Franklin: “As electrified clouds pass over a country, high hills and high trees, lofty towers, spires, masts of ships, chimneys, etc, as so many prominences and points, draw the electrical fire, and the whole cloud discharges there…

“If these things are so, may not the power of points be of use to mankind, in preserving houses, churches,… from the stroke of lightning, by directing us to fix on the highest parts of those edifices, upright rods of iron made sharp as a needle… and from the foot of those rods a wire down the outside of the building into the ground…?

“I would propose an experiment… On the top of some high tower or steeple, place a kind of sentry-box big enough to contain a man and an electrical stand. From the middle of the stand, let an iron rod rise and pass bending out of the door, and then upright 20 or 30 feet, pointed very sharp at the end. If the electrical stand is kept clean and dry, a man standing on it when such clouds are passing low might be electrified and afford sparks, the rod drawing fire to him from a cloud. If any danger to the man should be apprehended (although I think there would be none) let him stand on the floor of his box, and now and then bring near to the rod a loop of wire that has one end fastened to the leads he his holding by a wax handle; so the sparks, if the rod is electrified, will strike from the rod to the wire and not affect him.”

The invention brought a lot of amusement to Philadelphia after its first connection to a library. The connection was by the use of an electrical machine which was done by one of Franklin's correspondents in the UK.

The achievement of Franklin in electrification did not stop him from going further forward. In 1758 while working in Cambridge, UK Franklin together with John Hadley discovered the principle of refrigeration through evaporation. The did the experiments in an 18 °C room where they continuously wetted a thermometer using ether then evaporate the ether using bellows. They noticed that the temperature on the thermometer would quickly move to -14 °C.

Benjamin Franklin

Franklin the statesman :

Other than printing and scientific invention Franklin was also a well-respected statesman. In 1751 Franklin was elected as the Pennsylvania Assembly representative. During this period Franklin traveled to the UK many times to solve tax issues. He would later return to Philadelphia in 1775 after the start of the Revolutionary War. During this time he was elected to serve as a delegate in the Second Continental Congress. He was also part of the committee team that drafted the Declaration of Independence declaring their freedom from British colonialism.


Being a congressman he was then sent to France to ask their government to help America in the Revolution War. The negotiation was successful as France signed an alliance with America and provided soldiers, money and equipment. This was a very critical move since it saw America win the war against the UK.

Benjamin Franklin

Final years :

Benjamin Franklin  left France in 1785 and returned to Philadelphia where he acted as a delegate to the constitutional convention. He was the oldest delegate in the convention aged 81. Franklin later died on the 17th of April 1790 in Philadelphia aged 84. He was mourned by the entire country with his funeral attended by more than 20,000 people. He was then buried at the Christ Church Cemetery in Philadelphia.

Benjamin Franklin  remains one of the most celebrated heroes in the United stated more than 200 years since his death.





This article was is all about Benjamin Franklin including his early life , education , inventions and his contribution in the field of electricity .



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