Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (Cliffs Notes) by Merrill Maguire Skaggs

By Merrill Maguire Skaggs

Certainly one of America's ideal minds -- and wits -- writing within the 18th century was once Benjamin Franklin. He helped write the U.S. structure, he used to be an inventor, statesman, and scientist. He was once as worthwhile to society as one guy may be. the following he tells his personal tale.

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As postmaster, the printer Bradford forbade his carriers to transport Franklin's papers and thus made it necessary to bribe the riders. Most of the public, moreover, assumed that Bradford's paper circulated further and was a better place to advertise. This assumption hurt Franklin's business, though he prospered enough to open a stationer's shop and hire two helpers. But he so resented Bradford's postal policies, that he carefully avoided duplicating them when he became postmaster of the Colonies.

Franklin invented a method of replacing damaged type and could also engrave, make ink, and serve as warehouseman. But as he shared his knowledge with the others, his services became expendable. So Keimer first began to hint that he should take a cut in wages, then grew increasingly quarrelsome. Presently a trifle caused a rupture between them: Franklin heard a noise and stuck his head out of the window to see what had happened. Outside, Keimer saw him, yelled for him to mind his own business, and Franklin quit, feeling he had been publicly embarrassed.

12. CHASTITY: Rarely use Venery but for Health or Offspring; Never to Dulness, Weakness, or the Injury of your own or another's Peace or Reputation. 13. HUMILITY: Imitate Jesus and Socrates. Franklin alloted himself one week to acquire each new virtue. And in order to see his progress, he made a record book and gave himself a black mark each time he failed to exhibit a virtue on which he was working. He also made a schedule for his day, alloting seven hours for sleep, eight for work, and nine for planning, reviewing, reflecting, eating, relaxing, and reading.

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