Thomas S. Kidd— Americans incessantly debate the role of religion in our nation’s origins. Was America founded as a Christian nation? Or was the American Revolution mostly championed by Enlightenment skeptics? Some of the Founders, such as George Washington, spoke highly of religion, but their personal beliefs were unclear. The
To celebrate the publication of The Papers of Benjamin Franklin: Volume 42 this month, we’re highlighting the founding father’s opinions on immigration as found in his letters and pamphlets. The following excerpt is taken from his pamphlet “Information to Those Who Would Remove to America.” Benjamin Franklin— With Regard to Encouragements for
Richard D. Brown— In 1787 when Benjamin Franklin left the Constitutional Convention a lady famously asked “Well Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?” “A republic,” Franklin replied tartly, “if you can keep it.” Now, 230 years later, Franklin’s observation on our Founders’ great experiment haunts us.
Today we celebrate 231 years of American independence with parades and traditional past times of barbecues and fireworks. As we enjoy this patriotic holiday, Yale University Press looks to our founding fathers who brought forth new ideas to an emerging nation. In this New York Times Bestseller, Gore Vidal’s Inventing
This day marks the 300th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Franklin. Franklin is perhaps the most remarkable figure in American history: the greatest statesman of his age, he played a pivotal role in the formation of the American republic. He was also a pioneering scientist, a bestselling author, the
“If Franklin were to mount a museum exhibition about himself,” writes Edward Rothstein in the New York Times, “it might very well resemble – in its variety, intelligence and pleasures – Benjamin Franklin: In Search of a Better World.” The exhibition, which just opened, will be on display at the