Ben Franklin

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Ben Franklin was a man of many ideas. He was able to come up with hundreds of inventions which played big roles at that time and for the future. He greatly affected the lives of many people around the world at that time period and at this time period with the things that he had invented. One of Ben Franklin’s greatest inventions was the Franklin stove. He took the model of the old stove and made it even better and more energy sufficient. The people of Philadelphia wanted the Franklin stove for two main reasons. The first reason is it gave off two times more heat than the old wood burning stoves. The second reason is it used one half the energy required for the old wood burning stoves(Cousins 88). This means that people didn’t have to chop down as many trees and split as much wood. They were able to used the wood for more useful things than just burning it. Ben wrote, ”Since wood has become so expensive, any new proposal for saving the wood may at least be worth consideration”(Parker 13). They could use wood to build house or any other kinds of building or structures. They could also used the extra wood to build furniture and other things for the inside of their houses. Also there would be a lot of extra wood because less wood was required for burning. It was also was a lot less dangerous because it was a closed flame rather than an open fire. Ben found out that the women in his family that stayed home each day, did not get as many cold and toothaches as they used to(Cousins 89). “Soon every women in Philadelphia wanted a Franklin stove”(Cousins 89). “The Pennsylvania authorities were very pleased. They offered Franklin the patent for his design of the stove. This meant that he could earn money for every Franklin stove made. He refused saying that he was glad to be able to serve others.” (Parker 13) This was a truly great inventions for the people of that time and the present. During that time, wood burning was everyone’s source of heat, now there are many sources of heat. People still burn wood and it is probably the cheapest way to heat a house. Many people also use it as their primary source of heat or just as back up heat just in case something happens.

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Ben Franklin next invention was great for the people with a vision impairment. They were the bifocals. They are a pair of glasses which have one lens separated into two halves. “ One had a convex lens for reading and close work. The other had less convex lenses for looking at faraway objects” (Parker 14). Before Ben had bifocals, he had to carry around two pairs of glasses. One pair for when he was reading and the other pair for when he was walking about (Cousins 95). Many people loved this because they did not always have to carry around two pairs of glasses everywhere they went. The invention of bifocals was a great idea that the people of the future liked and use a lot. When it comes to electricity, Ben Franklin is the first thing that pops up in most people’s head. Ben didn’t invent electricity but he was able to do many things that were really incredible. His first and most famous experiment with electricity was him flying a kite in a thunderstorm. “He wanted to prove that lightning is electricity” (Usel 15). So Ben and his son William, had decided to try an electrical experiment during a thunderstorm. They both walked to the top of a hill and let the kite go up. They wanted to get electricity to hit the rod on the kite and travel down the rope and hit the key. Soon, the fiber of the string that he was holding began to stand up and then he received a tingle of an electric shock from the key in the palm of his hands (Cousins 110). He also brought along a bottle so he could trap the electricity in it. “This was a great moment in the history of electricity. Ben himself must have been overcome with wonder, because he never said much about it. He talked about almost everything else. The reports of the discovery did not come out for several years later.” (Cousins 112) “As soon as his experiment was made known, Ben was given honorary degrees by Harvard, Yale and by William and Mary College” (Cousins 112). This same dangerous experiment was tried by many people. Some were successful and one person was not successful resulting in a death. After Franklin was able to get electricity, he just tried to figure out how it would be useful for the everyone. One of his inventions was the electrical battery. “He took eleven pairs of large sash-glass, armed with thin leaden plates posted on each side, pasted vertically and supported at two inches distance on silk cords, with hooks of thick leaden wire, one from each side charged together with the same labor as one single pane”(Donovan 65). This was considered the first battery in the world. This was a great inventions because people were able to store electricity. It greatly help the people in the future. They used the battery for cars, electrical gadgets, and other thing like that. Batteries are a necessity for everyone because of the need to power objects in our household. If Ben Franklin did not invent the battery, we would not be able to use many of the things we have today. As a result of experiments with electricity, Ben invented the lighting rod. The rod draws electricity out of the clouds and down in the ground before it strikes and causes damage. “Many people were suspicious at first. They thought that the tall rod pointing up to the heavens, waiting to be struck by awesome lightning, would interfere with the will of God. But gradually they accepted the idea.” (Parker 21) Lightning can cause a lot of damage to tall structure during a thunderstorm. Therefore, mostly all tall building have lighting rods on their roofs so they won’t have the inside or outside of the buildings damaged by lightning. One day, Franklin decided he was going to have a picnic by using electric. This meant killing the animal with an electric shock and electrically cooking it over a fire. “He thought that meat might be more tender if the animal from which it came was killed by electricity” (Donovan 73). He got his electricity from two glass bottles. Then when he tried to touch the turkey with the two wires, he accidentally touched the wires together shocking himself (Donovan 73). “The company present say that the flash was very great and the crack as loud as a pistol; yet, my senses being instantly gone, I neither saw the one nor heard the other; nor did I feel the stroke on my hand”(Van Doren 161). Ben Franklin had so many other inventions that he had come up with. Experiments electricity was the greatest thing has ever done because electricity is so important. If Ben did not experiment with any electricity, we may not have had any source of energy. It would be very different world without being able to use electricity or his other inventions. Ben Franklin was a man of many ideas. He was able to effect the lives of many people around the world with his inventions. He has left a lasting mark on the world with his inventions such as the Franklin stove and his experiments with electricity. He will be remembered forever for his accomplishments.

Work Cited Cousins, Margaret. Ben Franklin of Old Philadelphia. New York: Random House, 1952. Donovan, Frank R. The Many Worlds of Benjamin Franklin. New York: American Heritage Publishing Co., 1963. Parker, Steve. Benjamin Franklin and Electricity. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1995. Usel, T.M. Benjamin Franklin. Minnesota: Capstone Press, 1996. Van Doren, Carl. Benjamin Franklin. New York: The Viking Press, 1938.

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