Benjamin Franklin's Printing Network: Disseminating Virtue in Early America

By Ralph Frasca | Go to book overview

Preface

“Historians relate, not so much what is done, as what they would have believed,” Benjamin Franklin suggested to readers of his Poor Richard's Almanack in 1739.1 Franklin's view, although characteristically cynical, underscores the historian's important role of “interpreter.” When there is disagreement on the “truth” of what happened in the past, historians propound their theories, which compete for acceptance and validation in the Miltonian free marketplace of ideas. Even more subject to interpretation is the question of why something happened. Seldom can absolute truth be located in this search, which is why “why” is the historian's most challenging question.

This book addresses both the “why” and the “what” of Franklin's printing network, as in “What form did it take?” and “Why did he create it?” Franklin himself offers only a few vague allusions to his printing network, which has contributed to the minimal acknowledgement of its existence in the voluminous literature about Franklin. Thus, my task here has been to reconstruct an organization from inference, by piecing shards of information together to suggest the structure and functions of a printing network that served variously as an economic investment, political force, mechanism of press growth, and means for Franklin to attain his ideological ambitions.

The abundance of Franklin scholarship and primary-source materials presents the omnipresent temptation to say everything about Franklin, or at least everything about his printing career. I make no attempt at comprehensiveness here, for such an effort would be redundant in light of the numerous lengthy treatments of the subject. Consequently, the interesting stories of Franklin's apprenticeship in Boston, his service as a journeyman in London

-vii-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Benjamin Franklin's Printing Network: Disseminating Virtue in Early America
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 295

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.