Benjamin Franklin was an American founding father, author, inventor, and statesman who played a pivotal role in the American Revolution and helped to shape the nation's future. He is widely considered one of the most influential figures in early US history. Born into a poor family on January 17th, 1706, in Boston, Massachusetts, he had little formal education but taught himself to read and write. He began his career as a printer before becoming involved with politics through writing for newspapers like the Pennsylvania Gazette.
Franklin became increasingly important during the Revolutionary War. He was sent by Congress to negotiate treaties with European countries such as France that provided support for America's independence from Great Britain. Afterward, he served as Minister Plenipotentiary of the United States to France (1778–85) and then returned home, where he became President of Pennsylvania (1785–88). In addition to these accomplishments, Franklin also made significant contributions to science, including experiments involving electricity, which led to his being recognized around Europe as an expert on this topic. His inventions included bifocal glasses, lightning rods for building protection against storms, and other items still used today, such as swimming fins or flexible urinary catheters, among others.
He wrote several books about various topics ranging from philosophy and religion to government policy, making him one of America's most prolific authors at the time. Benjamin Franklin died on April 17th, 1790, leaving behind an enduring legacy that continues up until the present day, not only due to his scientific achievements, but also because many of his political ideas are still relevant today, especially when it comes to promoting peace between nations without resorting to violence whenever possible.