Benjamin Franklin Signed Receipt for "Pennsylvania Gazette," Important & Beautifully Displayed!

A fully handwritten receipt for Franklin's "Pennsylvania Gazette", Written by and signed "Franklin" at the conclusion. N.p. [Philadelphia], dated April 21, 1756. Measuring 6.75" x 2" (sight). The receipt has been matted and framed along with a portrait of Franklin and a small plaque to the overall size of 23" x 16.5". Framed so that both sides of the receipt are visible - on verso are additional receipts for rent and other charges for James Johnston and Wishart & Edwards. The paper is lightly and unevenly toned throughout, with some areas of foxing at the corners and edges. A small area of chipping at the right edge does not affect any text. Large and bold signature by Franklin.

In full: "Received April 21, 1756 of Mr. John Pascall of Darby Twenty Seven shillings and Six pence in full for the Gazette to the Fifth of February last by Franklin and Hall. £1.7.6."

Founding Father Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) became a successful newspaper editor and printer in Philadelphia prior to his involvement in the revolutionary cause. He began publishing the "Pennsylvania Gazette" at the age of 23, and the paper grew into one of the most prominent newspapers in the colonies up until 1800. In the lead-up to the American Revolution, the paper was used to voice colonial dissent against British rule, particularly calling out the injustice of the Stamp Act and the Townshend Acts. Franklin also published several of his own pieces in the paper under aliases, including " Poor Richard's Almanac." The paper also published the country's first political cartoon, known as "Join, or Die", which Franklin authored himself in 1754.

David Hall (1714-1772) was a Scottish printer who immigrated to America and opened his own printing business in Philadelphia. Franklin was introduced to Hall by his brother-in-law, James Read, after expressing a desperate need for an experienced printer to run the "Pennsylvania Gazette". The then 30-year-old Hall accepted Franklin's job offer and set sail from Scotland, arriving in Philadelphia on June 19, 1744 to be employed as a journeyman. Through his partnership with Franklin, Hall became a professional in the eighteenth-century printing business which Franklin developed throughout Colonial America, and soon became the foreman of Franklin's shop in 1746, tasked with editing and publishing the Gazette. The two men successfully worked in tandem for eighteen years until Franklin completed his sale of the part of the business in 1766, and Hall partnered with William Sellers. The new firm of Hall and Sellers would go on to print all of the Continental paper money issued by Congress during the Revolutionary War.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.


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August 17, 2022 10:30 AM EDT
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