An action-packed retelling of the life and work of the polymath and so-called First American, Benjamin Franklin.
All Benjamin Franklin biographers face a major challenge: they must compete with their subject. In one of the greatest autobiographies in world literature, Franklin has already told his own story, and subsequent biographers have often taken Franklin at his word. In this exciting new account, Kevin J. Hayes takes a different approach.
Hayes begins when Franklin is eighteen and stranded in London, describing how the collection of curiosities he viewed there fundamentally shaped Franklin’s intellectual and personal outlook. Subsequent chapters take in Franklin’s career as a printer, his scientific activities, his role as a colonial agent, his participation in the American Revolution, his service as a diplomat, and his participation in the Constitutional Convention. Containing much new information about Franklin’s life and achievements, Hayes’s critical biography situates Franklin within his literary and cultural milieu.
Against the religious backdrop of pre- and postcolonial America stands
the towering figure--and mind--of Benjamin Franklin. A Renaissance man
in a Revolutionary time, Franklin had interests and knowledge not only
in religion but in literature, philosophy, politics, publishing, history,
and scientific inquiry, among many other disciplines.
Kerry S. Walters examines Franklin's search for the Divine using a similar,
multifaceted approach--and in so doing has created the first extended
treatment of Franklin's religious thought in thirty years. Walters brings
the same intellectual range and depth to the understanding of Franklin's
beliefs that Franklin brought to his own quest. What emerges from this
pilgrimage into the soul of one of America's greatest figures is a very
human Benjamin Franklin who grew with the accumulation of knowledge to
arrive at a "theistic perspectivism," which provided him with
a philosophical explanation for the diversity of religious faiths--and
a justification for the liberty of conscience he advocated throughout
his life. Benjamin Franklin and His Gods is an original and beautifully
challenging spiritual and intellectual biography. Destined to be a classic.
Ever the chronicler and teacher, Franklin wrote an autobiography, ostensibly for his illegitimate son William. Apart from hurried additions when he was in his eighties, his story halts at 1757. Tracing his footsteps centuries later, Franklin’s most celebrated biographer completes the last twenty-five years of the autobiography by drawing on Franklin’s most personal and insightful letters and writings—even making additions within the interrupted Autobiography to give us the expository memoir that Franklin intended. Indeed, as he wrote it.
British colonial relations with the native peoples of eastern North America
This is an annotated edition of the treaties between the British colonies and Indian nations, originally printed and sold by Benjamin Franklin. Last published in 1938, Benjamin Franklin, Pennsylvania, and the First Nations makes these important treaties available once again, featuring a simpler, easier-to-read format, extensive explanatory notes, and maps. A detailed introduction by Susan Kalter puts the treaties in their proper historical and cultural context.
This carefully researched edition shows these treaties to be complex intercultural documents, and provides significant insight into the British colonists’ relationship with native peoples of North America. They also reveal the complexity of Benjamin Franklin’s perceptions of Native Americans, showing him in some negotiations as a promoter of the Indian word against the colonial one. Finally, the treaties offer an enormous wealth of linguistic, aesthetic, and cultural information about the Iroquois, the Delawares, and their allies and neighbors.