This Day in History
We, The People (detail)

Benjamin Franklin Born
January 17, 1706

On January 17, 1706, Benjamin Franklin was born. For years he worked as a printer’s helper. Franklin borrowed money and set himself up in his own printing business. He became so successful that in 1729 he bought The Pennsylvania Gazette and was also owner of a general store and book store with his wife, Deborah Read. Poor Richard’s Almanac was published by Franklin in 1733 and contained his lively writing and now-famous phrases such as “A penny saved is a penny earned.” Franklin’s contributions to society were many, including the organization of the first fire company, the formation of the Pennsylvania Hospital and the American Philosophical Society and the invention of the Franklin stove. In 1749, Franklin retired from the printing business and began experimenting in science. He was elected to the 2nd Continental Congress and worked on the committee that drafted the Declaration of Independence. Ben Franklin died on April 17, 1790 at the age of 84.

February's Archived Features:

Wednesday February 1, 2023
Thursday February 2, 2023
Friday February 3, 2023
Saturday February 4, 2023
Sunday February 5, 2023
Monday February 6, 2023



All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2019. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.