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Collection Benjamin Franklin Papers

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Catalogs, Calendars, Histories, and Published Editions of Benjamin Franklin’s Papers

  • Bell, Whitfield J., Jr. “Henry Stevens, His Uncle Samuel, and the Franklin Papers.” Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society 72 (October 1957-December 1960): 143-211.
  • Benjamin Franklin: A Register and Index of his Papers in the Library of Congress. Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress, 1973. Available online.
  • Bigelow, John, ed. The Complete Works of Benjamin Franklin. New York, 1887-1889. Available online through HathiTrust External.
  • Duane, William. The Works of Dr. Benjamin Franklin. Philadelphia: W. Duane, 1808-1818.  Available online through HathiTrust External.
  • Ford, Worthington Chauncey. List of the Benjamin Franklin Papers in the Library of Congress. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1905.  Available online through HathiTrust External.
  • Franklin, William Temple. Memoirs of the Life and Writings of Benjamin Franklin. London: Henry Colburn, 1817-1818. Available online through HathiTrust External.
  • Labaree, Leonard, ed. The Papers of Benjamin Franklin. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1959 - present. This is the latest comprehensive published edition of Franklin’s papers. The current editor is Ellen Cohn. Available online at through the Packard Humanities Institute External and Founders Online External.
  • Philbrick, Francis S. “Notes on Early Editions and Editors of Franklin,” American Philosophical Society Proceedings XCVII (1953): 525-564.
  • Roelker, William Greene, ed. Benjamin Franklin and Catharine Ray Greene: Their Correspondence, 1755-1790.  Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society, 1949.
  • Smyth, Albert Henry. The Writings of Benjamin Franklin. New York: Macmillan, 1905-1907. Available online through HathiTrust External.
  • Sparks, Jared, ed. The Works of Benjamin Franklin. Boston: Hilliard, Gray and Company, 1836-1840.  Revised ed., Philadelphia: Childs and Peterson, 1859. Available online through HathiTrust External.
  • Stevens, Henry. Benjamin Franklin’s Life and Writings: A Bibliographic Essay on the Stevens’ Collection of Books and Manuscripts Relating to Dr. Franklin. London: Messrs. Davy & Sons, 1881. Available online through HathiTrust External.
  • Van Doren, Carl, ed. The Letters of Benjamin Franklin and Jane Mecom. Princeton: Princeton University Press for the American Philosophical Society, 1950.

Selected Online Resources

  • Benjamin Franklin: In His Own Words. Exhibition, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., December 12, 2005–June 17, 2006. Available online.
  • Drexler, Kenneth, et al. “Finding Franklin: A Resource Guide.” Library of Congress Web Guide.
  • Isaacson, Walter. Discussing his biography of Franklin at the National Book Festival, Library of Congress, October 4, 2003. Webcast available online.
  • Lemay, Leo. “Benjamin Franklin, A Documentary History.” Library of Congress, June 9, 2006.  Webcast available online.
  • Prints & Photographs Online Catalog, Prints & Photographs Division, Library of Congress. Available online. The site offers a number of illustrations of Benjamin Franklin.

Selected Biographies and Studies of Benjamin Franklin

  • Aldridge, Alfred Owen. Franklin and His French Contemporaries. New York: New York University Press, 1957.
  • Anderson, Douglas. The Radical Enlightenments of Benjamin Franklin. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997.
  • Chaplin, Joyce. The First Scientific American: Benjamin Franklin and the Pursuit of Genius. New York: Basic Books, 2006.
  • Cohen, Benjamin. Benjamin Franklin’s Science. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1990.
  • Conner, Paul. Poor Richard’s Politicks: Benjamin Franklin and His New American Order. New York: Oxford University Press, 1965.
  • Goodwin, George. Benjamin Franklin in London: The British Life of America’s Founding Father. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2016.
  • Green, James N., and Peter Stallybrass. Benjamin Franklin, Writer and Printer. New Castle, Del: Oak Knoll Press; Philadelphia: Library of Philadelphia; London: The British Library, 2006.
  • Huang, Nian-Sheng. Benjamin Franklin in American Thought and Culture. Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society, 1994.
  • Isaacson, Walter. Benjamin Franklin, An American Life. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2003.
  • Jennings, Francis. Benjamin Franklin, Politician. New York: Norton, 1996.
  • Lemay, Leo. The Life of Benjamin Franklin. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006-2009.
  • Lemay, Leo, ed. Reappraising Benjamin Franklin: A Bicentennial Perspective. Newark: University of Delaware Press; London, Cranbury, NJ: Associated University Presses, 1993.
  • Lepore, Jill. Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin. New York: Knopf, 2013.
  • Lopez, Claude-Anne. Mon Cher Papa: Franklin and the Ladies of Paris. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1966.
  • Lopez, Claude-Anne, and Eugenia W. Herbert. The Private Franklin. New York: Norton, 1975.
  • Middlekauf, Robert. Benjamin Franklin and his Enemies. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1966.
  • Morgan, Edmund S. Benjamin Franklin. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2002.
  • Sellers, Charles Coleman. Benjamin Franklin in Portraiture. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1962.
  • Schiff, Stacy. A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America. New York: Henry Holt, 2005.
  • Schiffer, Michael Brian. Draw the Lightning Down: Benjamin Franklin and Electrical Technology in the Age of Enlightenment. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003.
  • Skemp, Sheila. Benjamin and William Franklin: Father and Son, Patriot and Loyalist. Boston: St. Martin’s Press, 1994.
  • Skemp, Sheila. William Franklin: Son of a Patriot, Servant of a King. New York: Oxford University Press, 1990.
  • Stourzh, Gerald. Benjamin Franklin and American Foreign Policy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1969.
  • Tise, Larry E., ed. Benjamin Franklin and Women. University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2000.
  • Van Doren, Carl. Benjamin Franklin. New York: Viking Press, 1938.
  • Waldstreicher, David. Runaway America: Benjamin Franklin, Slavery, and the American Revolution. New York: Hill and Wang, 2004.
  • Walters, Kerry S. Benjamin Franklin and his Gods. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1999.
  • Wood, Gordon S. The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin. New York: Penguin Press, 2004.
  • Wright, Esmond. Franklin of Philadelphia. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 1988.

Selected Books for Young Readers

  • Byrd, Robert. Electric Ben: The Amazing Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin. New York: Dial Books for Young Readers, 2012.
  • Harness, Cheryl. The Remarkable Benjamin Franklin. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 2008.
  • Mara, Wil. Ben Franklin. New York: Scholastic, 2014.
  • Rockliff, Mara. Mesmerized: How Ben Franklin Solved a Mystery That Baffled All of France. Somerville, Mass.: Candlewick Press, 2015.
  • Rosenstock, Barb. Ben Franklin’s Big Splash: The Mostly True Story of His First Invention. Honesdale, Pa.: Highlights Press, 2014.

Compiled December 2017