If the word “Star” was not so hackneyed it would be perfect for Benjamin Franklin. It is indeed undoubtedly the status he had during his stay in Paris between 1776 and 1785, in his capacity as an ambassador of the new republic of the United States of America. Received at court and among the best Parisian society, adulated, pampered and honored, he nevertheless lived most of the time very modestly in his house in Passy, which quickly became the center of a philosophical, scientific and Masonic chapel won over to new ideas. In The Way to Wealth Benjamin Franklin he has written ample.
How to summarize in a few lines the rich life and the important work of Franklin?
In 1723, at 17, he went to work for a printer in Philadelphia. All his life he will remain strongly attached to this city. Background: Philadelphia is the capital of Pennsylvania, a state founded by the English Quaker William Penn who sought refuge for this dissident religious group, persecuted in England, who rejected the ecclesiastical hierarchy and advocated equality, tolerance, Nonviolence. There are ideals that will always be dear to Franklin.
- Philadelphia will be the city of Franklin and Pennsylvania its state of the election. After a short stay in England he returned to Philadelphia in 1729 and bought a printing press and a newspaper, the Pennsylvania Gazette, where he published columns and editorials that soon made it the most widely read newspaper in colonial America.
- He also prints the paper money of the state of Pennsylvania and this lucrative contract allows him to repay his debts. At the same time, he opens a shop selling paper, scrolls and other items. In January 1730, he became the official printer of the Pennsylvania Government.
- At the same time he created “The Junto “, the “Junta”, a discussion group that meets weekly to discuss philosophical topics.
In 1731 he founded the first municipal library, which in 1742 became the “Philadelphia Library Company, ” which included some 8,000 books, instruments and tools of physics, a collection of natural history objects, and collections of art. arts. The model of the library is copied to the delight of Benjamin Franklin throughout the state of Pennsylvania and in other colonies. This is the idea of making books accessible to the greatest number pleased Benjamin Franklin, who saw it as a means of transmitting the ideals of freedom.
The Idea for Money Management
But especially in 1732, he has a great idea that will ensure his fortune, that of publishing, under the pseudonym Richard Saunders, an almanac, the Poor Richard’s Almanack ( the Almanac poor Richard) a collection of maxims and texts touting the progress of the industry and giving economic advice. The first edition sells for 10,000 copies and will continue to be published annually for twenty-five years.
Dedicated to his city of Philadelphia, he is a man involved in the life of his city: he also creates the fire brigade and a public hospital.
It was during this period that Franklin studied several foreign languages including French, German, Spanish and Italian. But Benjamin Franklin was not just a prominent philosopher or thinker, nor even a wise businessman. He was also passionate about scientific issues and the progress they could make to humanity. Progress had to find concrete outlets.