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1 His life Benjamin Franklin born January 17 1706 was the 10th son and 15th child of 17 children in the Josiah Franklin family Josiah was a soap and candlemaker who lived in Boston Massachusetts with his second wife Abiah Folger Although Franklin learned to read at an early age he only attended grammar school for two years By the time he was 10 years old Franklin was working for his father However he did not enjoy the candlemaking profession and two years later Franklin was apprenticed to his brother James a printer For five years Franklin sought to master the printers trade During this time he also strove to improve his education Franklin read numerous classics and perfected his writing style One night Franklin slipped a letter signed Silence Dogood under the door of his brothers newspaper the New England Courant That letter and the next 13 written by Franklin were published anonymously The essays were widely read and acclaimed for their satire After a quarrel with his brother in 1723 Franklin left Boston for Philadelphia where he again worked in the printing industry He established a friendship with the Pennsylvania governor Sir William Keith and at Keiths suggestion Franklin decided to go into business for himself Keith offered to arrange letters of credit and introduction for Franklins trip to London to purchase equipment Unfortunately Keith proved unreliable and Franklin arrived in London with no means However he quickly found employment in two of Londons largest printing houses and after two years earned enough money to return to America Franklin returned to Philadelphia in 1726 and resumed his trade By 1730 Franklin had his own business That same year he married Deborah Read a woman he met before his trip to England Together they had a son who died at four years of age and a daughter who survived them both Franklins business ventures included the purchase of the Pennsylvania
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