Children of Famous Parents: American Statesmen Benjamin Franklin
About the children of famous American statesman Benjamin Franklin, biography of the kids.
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S CHILDREN
Benjamin Franklin had 2 legitimate sons by his wife Deborah. One died at the age of 4. The other son, William (1731-1813), was with Franklin in 1752 when he flew the famous kite. William was the last royal governor of New Jersey before the Revolution; when the war broke out, he sided with the British. He was tried as a traitor and imprisoned until 1782, when he was deported to England, where he remained for the rest of his life. But in 1784, after receiving overtures toward reconciliation from his Tory son, Franklin wrote to him. "Nothing has ever hurt me so much," he confessed, "as to find myself deserted in my old age by my only son; and not only deserted, but to find him taking up arms against me in a cause wherein my good fame, fortune, and life were all at stake ... we will endeavor, as you propose, mutually to forget what has happened." A 3rd son, acknowledged although illegitimate, was raised by Deborah Franklin.
Franklin's only daughter, Sarah (1744-?) was well known for her efforts on behalf of the rebel soldiers during the War. She married a merchant, Richard Bache, her father's successor as postmaster general, and gave Franklin 7 grandchildren, and nursed her father in his old age. His favorite grandson, Benjamin Franklin Bache, nicknamed "Lightning Rod, Jr.," was a prominent political journalist. Many of Franklin's grandsons and great-grandsons had distinguished careers.
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