This is the second in our series of articles about the Presidential series of 1938, which is popularly called the “Prexies” by many stamp collectors. Since the series is being presented in order starting with the lowest value and continuing through the highest value, this article will discuss the value honoring Benjamin Franklin. Figure 1, below, shows an enlarged picture of the Presidential series value depicting Franklin.

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Figure 1.  Benjamin Franklin



Franklin was certainly one of the most accomplished and prominent figures of 18th century America making significant contributions in many areas including science, politics, foreign affairs, literature, publishing, and postal communications. Franklin, who was the 15th child and youngest son in a family of 17 children, was born in Boston in 1706. Franklin's many accomplishments were achieved despite having only 2 years of formal education as a child. He started his printing and publishing career, at the age of 12, as an apprentice in an older brother's print shop. At the age of 17, Franklin ran away to Philadelphia where he worked in a number of print shops and, later, as an assistant in the shop of a merchant, Thomas Denham. During this period, Franklin also spent time in London, England working as a typesetter in a print shop. In 1730, after the death of Thomas Denham, he resumed his printing career opening his own printing business in Philadelphia. and became publisher of the newspaper the Pennsylvania Gazette.

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