Calling card, 1757-1775
Photo by Peter Harholdt, 2004
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Photo by Peter Harholdt, 2004

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The use of calling cards, though virtually unknown today, was integral to the smooth functioning of polite society in western Europe and the North American colonies. Franklin has written his name and enough of his address to permit the person on whom he was calling to identify him. At that point, the person being called on could decide whether or not to receive him. Franklin lived on Craven Street while he was an agent for several of the American Colonies, from 1757-1762 and 1764 to 1775. The card reads, in script: Dr. Franklin / Craven Street. Terms of Use Credits