Book Talk: ‘Poor Richard’s Women’ By Nancy Rubin Stuart

Join us this Women’s History Month as we talk to Nancy Rubin Stuart about her book ‘Poor Richard’s Women: Deborah Read Franklin and the Other Women Behind the Founding Father’, which reveals the long-neglected voices of the women Ben loved and lost during his lifelong struggle between passion and prudence. The most prominent among them was Deborah Read Franklin, his common-law wife and partner for 44 years. Long dismissed by historians, she was an independent, politically savvy woman and devoted wife who raised their children, managed his finances, and fought off angry mobs at gunpoint while he traipsed about England. Nancy also shines a light on Ben’s relationship with Margaret Stevenson, the widowed landlady of 36 Craven Street who managed Ben’s life in London alongside her daughter, Polly.

Weaving detailed historical research with emotional intensity and personal testimony, what emerges from Stuart’s pen is a colourful and poignant portrait of women in the age of revolution. Set two centuries before the rise of feminism, Poor Richard’s Women depicts the feisty, often-forgotten women dear to Ben’s heart who, despite obstacles, achieved an independence rarely enjoyed by their peers in that era.

Nancy Rubin Stuart is an award-winning author whose nonfiction books focus upon women and social history. These include the acclaimed POOR RICHARD’S WOMEN; Deborah Read Franklin and the Other Women Behind the Founding Father published by Beacon Press in March 2022. A paperback version follows in March 2023 in honour of Women’s History Month. Earlier books include DEFIANT BRIDES, named by the Wall Street Journal as one of the best books on Revolutionary-era women, THE MUSE OF THE REVOLUTION, and the best-selling AMERICAN EMPRESS.  Nancy’s journalistic work has appeared in the New York Times, Huffington Post, the Washington Post, the Baltimore Sun, the New England Quarterly and national magazines. She is the executive director of the Cape Cod Writers Center.

Connect with her at www.nancyrubinstuart.com.

Buy your copy of ‘Poor Richard’s Women’ here.

Franklin’s Young Scientists: SOUND!

Franklin’s Young Scientists is our FREE science club for aspiring scientists in Key Stage 2/3 (ages 7-14). Participants learn all about the experiments carried out by Benjamin Franklin and his British friends as well as trying their hand at practical investigations. A range of core topics from the science curriculum are covered including electricity, forces, sound and the human body.

In this session, we will carry out some exciting experiments involving SOUND.

Our SOUND workshop will be taking place on Thursday 9th March 2023 – 5pm-6:30pm

BOOK HERE

Where does sound come from? How is sound made? How does sound travel? How do we hear sound? These are some of the questions we will answer during the session using some interactive experiments to help consolidate learning.

Our Young Scientists will also get an exciting opportunity to learn all about Franklin’s fascinating Glass Armonica and even have a go at playing our replica in the House!

This is a FREE after-school workshop most suitable for KS2 and 3 pupils and anyone else with a keen interest in Science and History!

Please note: Parents are welcome to attend, however there is a cap of one adult per child during busier sessions.

BOOK HERE

Family Event: Inside Benjamin Franklin’s House

Our first family event of 2023 will explore Benjamin Franklin House to uncover what life was like in 18th century London. We will learn about the history behind each room of this Grade-I listed Georgian townhouse to understand what would have been happening here over 250 years ago!

Inside Benjamin Franklin’s House will be taking place on Thursday 16th February – 11am-12:30pm

BOOK HERE

What did the Georgians have for dinner? In our Historic Kitchen, we will learn about 18th century food & drink and even read some rather interesting recipes from 1785… pickled eels and turnip wine, anyone?

How did the Georgians entertain themselves? On our first floor, we will discover how tourism and leisure activities began to boom in the 18th century with new and exciting forms of entertainment becoming popular across the country. From firework displays to travelling zoos, curiosity shops to waxwork museums – the Georgians really knew how to enjoy their spare time!

What was Benjamin Franklin’s daily routine? On our second floor, where Benjamin Franklin lived for 16 years, we will read his very own account of his day to day living. We will hear all about his morning routine, his fitness regime, and even his personal hygiene! After hearing some of his tips, you might think that the Georgians weren’t so gorgeous after all!

For the final half of the session, we will craft our very own Benjamin Franklin House and fill our rooms with beautiful 18th century decorations! Each attendee will be able to take their homemade houses home at the end of the session, or donate their creations to the museum for us to put on display!

This is a FREE family event. You must reserve tickets for all those attending the event (including adults). The recommended age for this event is 5-11, however, all ages are welcome!

BOOK HERE

Franklin’s Young Scientists: FORCES!

Franklin’s Young Scientists is our FREE science club for aspiring scientists in Key Stage 2/3 (ages 10-14). Participants learn all about the experiments carried out by Benjamin Franklin and his British friends as well as trying their hand at practical investigations. A range of core topics from the science curriculum are covered including electricity, forces, sound and the human body.

Our Forces workshop will be taking place on Thursday 9th February 2023 – 5pm-6:30pm

BOOK HERE

In this session, we will carry out some exciting experiments involving air and water resistance. We will learn all about Franklin’s travels to the Lake District and the Netherlands and recreate some of his research into hydrodynamics.

The Young Scientists will test his famous oil on water experiment, which he carried out in the Lake District in 1772. They will explore the various forces involved in water and air resistance to support their learning in KS2/3 and apply these to a fun experiment at the end of the session. Each Scientist will be tasked with creating their very own parachute to experiment with air resistance and aerodynamics.

This is a FREE after-school workshop most suitable for Year 6-9 pupils and anyone else with a keen interest in Science and History! These workshops will run monthly with the next session occurring on 9th March.

Please note: Parents are welcome to attend, however there is a cap of one adult per child during busier sessions.

BOOK HERE

Events Calendar 2023

To view all upcoming events for the year, please check out our Event’s Calendar via the button below!

Franklin’s Young Scientists: ELECTRICITY!

Franklin’s Young Scientists is our FREE science club for aspiring scientists in Key Stage 2/3 (ages 10-14). Participants learn all about the experiments carried out by Benjamin Franklin and his British friends as well as trying their hand at practical investigations. A range of core topics from the science curriculum are covered including electricity, forces, sound and the human body.

BOOK NOW

In this session, we will carry out some exciting experiments with static electricity in our Student Science Centre and learn all about Franklin’s Key and Kite.

The Young Scientists will create sparks with our Wimshurst Machine, see their hair stand on end with our Van Der Graff Generator and watch 250,000 volts of electricity strike our miniature key and kite with out Tesla Coil!

This is a FREE after-school workshop most suitable for Year 6-9 pupils and anyone else with a keen interest in Science and History! These workshops will run monthly with the next session occurring on 16th February.

Please note: Parents are welcome to attend, however there is a cap of one adult per child during busier sessions.

BOOK NOW

Ben’s Birthday and the House’s Anniversary Bash!

You’d have the Custom broke, you say,
That marks with festive Mirth your natal Day;
“Because as one grows old,
One cares not to be told,
How many of one’s Years have pass’d away.”  – 1767

Celebrate Ben’s 317th birthday and the House’s 17th anniversary of being open to the public:

  • An after-hours tour of the Home Benjamin Franklin knew and loved
  • Hear fun facts about 18th century birthday celebrations
  • Learn how to play Happy Birthday on his Glass Armorica
  • A slice (or two) of birthday cake in his parlour

Party hats strongly encouraged!

Tour starts at 5pm. Limited capacity with timed entry. A toast to the man will follow the tour!

Tuesday 17 January.
Tour at 5pm. A toast to the man will follow! Limited capacity with timed entry. Book now to secure the date and tour time of your choice.

£15 per person (plus booking fee), refreshments included.

Family Event: Christmas!

Join us on Monday 19th December at 11am as we celebrate Christmas at Benjamin Franklin’s wonderful Grade I-Listed Georgian town house in the heart of London. You and your family will learn all about the rich history of Christmas in the 18th century and discover which Georgian traditions have survived to this day!

Learn about the history of Christmas in London, from the 18th century to the present day.

Discover the Georgian traditions that Benjamin Franklin experienced over 250 years ago!

Create your very own Christmas decorations to take home. From a toilet roll Santa to top your tree to sparkly icicles to hang from your mantlepiece!

Make a special Christmas card for a loved one using one of our Georgian or Victorian designs and write your message using one of our quill pens!

This event is designed primarily for families with children aged 4-10. However, all are welcome to take part in the festivities! To cover the cost of materials, there is a small, non-refundable fee of £2.50 per ticket for this event.

BOOK TICKETS

If you have any queries regarding the event, please do not hesitate to contact our Education Manager via email; education@benjaminfranklinhouse.com

Being Human Festival 2022

Did you know that this year marks the 250th anniversary of Benjamin Franklin’s visit to the Lake District in 1772?

Benjamin Franklin House will be teaming up with Keswick Museum, Lancaster University, the Royal Society and The Beacon Museum to commemorate the occasion as part of this year’s Being Human Festival. The event, Benjamin Franklin’s Scientific Adventures in the English Lakes will be taking place in Keswick Museum on Saturday 19th November 2022 between 11am and 3pm.

Interested in the history of science? Fancy learning about influential experiments conducted in the English Lake District hundreds of years ago? Come along for a hands-on exploration of this extraordinary chapter in scientific history. This activity marks the 250th anniversary of the American scientist, printer and statesman Benjamin Franklin’s visit to the Lakes in 1772.  Learn about some of the breakthrough experiments Franklin and his friends were conducting two and a half centuries ago. Explore why oil and water interact in the way that they do, and discover how to grow salt crystals.

Bookable sessions will run hourly. Drop-ins on the day are welcome, but the space for each session is limited. Please reserve places in advance. This activity is suited to family audiences of all ages.

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Oil on Water: Benjamin Franklin in the English Lakes from Henry Iddon on Vimeo.

After Dark: Christmas at Craven Street

Glistening by candlelight, our 18th century Georgian Home is the perfect setting for a cosy and historical Christmas. Our guided evening tours will take you on a magical journey through our extraordinary history.

  • A rare opportunity to see our home after-dark
  • Step back in time, walk through the rooms Ben knew and loved, and learn of Georgian Christmas traditions and celebrations
  • Snap photos of the House dressed with authentic 18th century decorations
  • Enjoy mince pies and the warming English yuletide drink, Wassail, in the Parlour of Benjamin Franklin

Thursday 8 and 22 December.
Tours will run at 5pm and 6pm. Limited capacity with timed entry. Book now to secure the date and tour time of your choice.

£15 per person (plus booking fee), refreshments included.