The original collection of books for the Franklin Public Library in Franklin, MA came as a gift from the famous US statesman, scientist and patriot Benjamin Franklin in 1778.
The original Franklin Collection still exists and is prominently in an antique wooden book case in the Library.
Franklin made the gift to the town in appreciation of the town naming itself after him. Asserting that “sense” was preferable to “sound”, Franklin gave books instead of money for a church bell the town fathers were seeking.
Just think of the enduring benefits that Ben Franklin’s far-seeing donation of books (in lieu of money for that church bell) gave to generations of town residents. I have read that Horace Mann, famous educator who was born in Franklin, MA in 1796, furthered his own education as a boy with the Franklin Collection of books. Sense certainly can be better than sound!
Click here to learn more about the Franklin Public Library in Franklin, Mass.
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