Documentary Filmmakers Celebrate Ben Franklin's Birthday in New Haven

The producers of a television documentary on Benjamin Franklin, whose papers are housed at Yale University, will present a preview of their series on January 19.

The Franklin project, which is being produced by Twin Cities Public Television and Middlemarch Films, will be aired nationally on PBS.

At an event sponsored by the Friends of the Franklin Papers, to take place at noon on Saturday, January 19 – Franklin’s 296th birthday – at the New Haven Lawn Club, 193 Whitney Avenue, members of the production team will show clips from the film and answer questions about the process of making it. Several editors who are currently working on the Franklin Papers will appear in the film providing scholarly commentary.

Publication of the Benjamin Franklin Papers is a joint project of Yale University and the American Philosophical Society, which was founded by Franklin in 1743. Housed in Yale’s Sterling Memorial Library, the original body of raw material consisted of 29,000 manuscript letters and documents and 2,200 published letters. Every year an average of 100 documents-from archives, libraries and private collections in many countries-is added to the collection.

The first volume of the papers, covering the period January 6, 1706 - December 31, 1734, was published by Yale University Press in 1959. The 36th of what will eventually be 46 volumes, was published in 2001, and includes documents from November 1, 1781 - March 15, 1782.

For more information and to purchase tickets to the event, contact the editorial offices of the Papers of Benjamin Franklin, 203-432-1814.

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Media Contact

Dorie Baker: dorie.baker@yale.edu, 203-432-1345