- from Ben Franklin
Ben Franklin was born in Boston in 1706. He was the 15th of 17 children. Ben only went to school for two years. Then he went to work in his father’s soap and candle shop.
At that time, school was something that most tradespeople couldn’t afford. Ben hated soap-making. So his father apprenticed him to his older brother James to learn printing. As an apprentice, Ben had to promise to work for James until he was 21. But that was nine long years away.
Ben loved to write. But he knew that James would never print anything that his 16-year-old brother wrote. So Ben signed his funny pieces “Silence Dogood” and slipped them under the printing shop door. James didn’t know who wrote them, but he liked them. So he published many of these essays in his newspaper, the New England Courant.
The brothers did not get along. After one bitter argument, Ben ran away. He went to New York and then to Philadelphia, which he called home for the rest of his long life.