Benjamin Franklin

In Search of a Better World

Edited by Page Talbott; Introduction by Walter Isaacson; Afterword by Edmund S. Morgan

View Inside Format: Cloth
Price: $45.00
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The first extensively illustrated book documenting Franklin’s life and work—a must-have for any Franklin enthusiast.

Benjamin Franklin: In Search of a Better World examines the many facets of America’s most extraordinary founding father. Politician, diplomat, scientist, printer, and civic improver, Franklin influenced every aspect of American life, from his own time to the present. This book, designed to accompany the traveling Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary exhibition celebrating Franklin’s 300th birthday, includes essays by ten prominent scholars that offer an overview of Franklin’s life and  cover the full range of his interests and achievements, illustrated by more than 265 color images—portraits, manuscripts, drawings, maps, paintings, engravings, and a plethora of Franklin's possessions, from teacups to printing equipment. This comprehensive guide, combining new scholarship with unique images—many of which have never been exhibited before—will be a must-have for anyone interested in Franklin.

Page Talbott is associate director of the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary and chief curator of the exhibition Benjamin Franklin: In Search of a Better World, which will travel throughout the United States and to France from 2005 to 2008. Contributors: Ellen R. Cohn, James N.Green, Walter Isaacson, E. Philip Krider, Emma J. Lapsansky-Werner, J. A. Leo Lemay, Robert Middlekauff, Edmund S. Morgan, Billy G. Smith, Page Talbott


Atlanta History Center, Atlanta (July 4 - October 14, 2007)

Denver Museum of Nature and Science, Denver (March 2 - May 28, 2007)

Missouri Historical Society, St. Louis (June 8 - September 4, 2006)

Musee de Arts et Metiers and Musee Carnavalet, Paris, France (Dec. 4, 2007 - March 30, 2008)

National Constitution Center, Philadelphia (December 15, 2005 - April 30, 2006)

The Houston Museum of Natural Science, Houston (Oct. 11, 2006 - Jan. 21, 2007)

“A grand volume, a glorious tribute to a man to whom America owes much. Talbott . . . has compiled a wonderful collection of informative essays and fascinating images, a worthy literary companion to the exhibit in her charge. Every aspect of Benjamin Franklin’s extraordinary life is explored in 10 probing and beautiful essays, rich with their contributors’ fine historical and social perspective. The text is enhanced with nearly 300 photos and reproductions of artifacts and art.”—Alison Hood, Book Page

"This is the companion book to the exhibition of the same name, and if you can't get to the show or just want a single book about Franklin, get this one. . . . One of the many delights of this publishing effort is the way words and pictures work together. . . . This is also a handsomely designed and printed book, and the $40 price is a bargain."—Simon Barker-Benfeld, Florida Times-Union


"Copiously illustrated. . . . Although a companion volume [to the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary exhibition], this book stands on its own."—Library Journal

Selected for Association of American University Presses (AAUP) Books for Public and Secondary School Libraries, 2006
ISBN: 9780300107999
Publication Date: November 11, 2005
396 pages, 8 1/2 x 11
10 b/w + 268 color illus.