Benjamin Franklin played a pivotal role in the founding of this country, but he was a lot more than just a figurehead for colonial revolution.
- His love of literature persuaded him to create the first public lending library in 1731.
- Fires were always a constant threat and possibility. Because of this, Franklin formed Pennsylvania’s first fire department in 1736 along with the Philadelphia Contributionship, the colonies’ first successful fire insurance company.
- Franklin became the first US Postmaster General in 1775 when the Second Continental Congress elected him.
- When writing, he has used both male and female pseudonyms such as Richard Saunders, Silence Dogood, Harry Meanwell, Alice Addertongue and Timothy Turnstone.
- He was considered the first American international celebrity, having visited 10 countries during his time as a diplomat.
- Other inventions attributed to Franklin include the following: swimming fins, bifocal glasses, odometer and lightning rods.
- While Franklin was a strong patriot, his son (illegitimate) William was loyal to England. Scholars have stated that William even spied on his father and reported his activities to the royal crown.
- He also uttered the following popular quote:
“In this world nothing is certain but death and taxes”