CIENTIST, inventor, diplomat, humorist, philanthropist, and entrepreneur: Benjamin Franklin is one of the most remarkable and influential Americans of any generation. In this online exhibition, created in honor of Franklin’s 300th birthday, we invite you to experience the adventures of an extraordinary man.

You will meet Franklin in Boston, as a rebellious, ambitious teenager, and then travel with him to Philadelphia, London, and Paris. As you learn about Franklin’s scientific experiments and civic initiatives, you’ll have the chance to see the world through his ever-curious eyes. Finally, you will come face to face with five of America’s founding documents — all of which Franklin signed. Surrounded by Franklin’s own possessions — many of which have been handed down in his family and never before seen in public — you’ll be immersed in his world. As you are introduced to many aspects of Franklin that you never knew, you will also discover his impact on your own world.

  • I. Character Matters
  • II. B.Franklin Printer
  • III. Civic Visions
  • IV. Useful Knowledge
  • V. World Stage
  • VI. Seeing Franklin
French VersionSpanish Version
This online presentation is excerpted and adapted from the exhibition Benjamin Franklin: In Search of a Better World.
ABOVE: Portrait of Benjamin Franklin, oil on canvas by Robert Feke, 1738-1746. MORE.
The Phillips Museum of Art