Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 1 of 2] With His Most Interesting Essays, Letters, and Miscellaneous Writings; Familiar, Moral, Political, Economical, and Philosophical, Selected with Care from All His Published Productions, and Comprising Whatever Is Most Entertaining and Valuable to the General Reader

By Benjamin Franklin

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common council, and soon after alderman; and the citizens at large
elected me a burgess to represent them in Assembly; this latter station
was the more agreeable to me, as I grew at length tired with sitting
there to hear the debates, in which, as clerk, I could take no part, and
which were often so uninteresting that I was induced to amuse myself
with making magic squares or circles, or anything to avoid weariness;
and I conceived my becoming a member would enlarge my power of doing
good. I would not, however, insinuate that my ambition was not flattered
by all these promotions: it certainly was; for, considering my low
beginning, they were great things to me: and they were still more
pleasing, as being so many spontaneous testimonies of the public good
opinion, and by me entirely unsolicited.

The office of justice of the peace I tried a little, by attending a few
courts and sitting on the bench to hear causes; but finding that more
knowledge of the common law than I possessed was necessary to act in
that station with credit, I gradually withdrew from it, excusing myself
by my being obliged to attend the higher duties of a legislator in the
Assembly. My election to this trust was repeated every year for ten
years, without my ever asking any elector for his vote, or signifying
either directly or indirectly any desire of being chosen. On taking my
seat in the house, my son was appointed their clerk.

The year following, a treaty being to be held with the Indians at
Carlisle, the governor sent a message to the house, proposing that they
should nominate some of their members, to be joined with some members of
council, as commissioners for that purpose. The house named the speaker
(Mr. Norris) and myself; and, being commissioned, we went to Carlisle
and met the Indians accordingly. As those people are extremely apt to
get drunk, and, when so, are very quarrelsome and disorderly, we
strictly forbade the selling any liquor to them; and when they
complained of this restriction, we told them that, if they would
continue sober during the treaty, we would give them plenty of rum when
the business was over. They promised this, and they kept their promise,
because they could get no rum; and the treaty was conducted very
orderly, and concluded to mutual satisfaction. They then claimed and
received the rum; this was in the afternoon; they were near one hundred
men, women, and children, and were lodged in temporary cabins, built in
the form of a square, just without

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Text Comparison with Experiments and Observations on Electricity Made at Philadelphia in America

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(_Price 2s.
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Again, when the bottle is electrised, but little of the electrical fire can be _drawn out_ from the top, by touching the wire, unless an equal quantity can at the same time _get in_ at the bottom.
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Place an electrised phial on wax; a small cork-ball suspended by a dry silk-thread held in your hand, and brought near to the wire, will first be attracted, and then repelled: when in this state of repellency, sink your hand, that the ball may be brought towards the bottom of the bottle; it will there be instantly and strongly attracted, 'till it has parted with its fire.
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To take the charg'd phial safely by the hook, and not at the same time diminish its force, it must first be set down on an electric _per se_.
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We judged then, that it must either be lost in decanting, or.
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a quire of paper is thought good armour against the push of a sword or even against a pistol bullet) and the crack is exceeding loud.
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it, did not seem in the least to retard its motion.
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And we know that common matter has not.
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Let it be charged, and then present the point at the same distance, and it will suddenly be discharged.
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Now if the fire of electricity and that of lightening be the same, as I have endeavour'd to show at large in a former paper, this pasteboard tube and these scales may represent electrified clouds.
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It is this: place the bottle on a glass stand, under the prime conductor; suspend a bullet by a chain from the prime conductor, till it comes within a quarter of an inch right over the wire of the bottle; place your knuckle on the glass stand, at just the same distance from the coating of the bottle, as the bullet is from its wire.
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Its pores are filled with it as full as the mutual repellency of the particles will admit; and what is already in, refuses, or strongly repels, any additional quantity.
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--And thus the experiment of the feather inclosed in a glass vessel hermetically sealed, but moving on the approach of the rubbed tube, is explained: When an additional quantity of the electrical fluid is applied to the side of the vessel by the atmosphere of the tube, a quantity is repelled and driven out of the inner surface of that side into the vessel, and there affects the feather, returning again into its pores, when the tube with its atmosphere is withdrawn; not that the particles of that atmosphere did themselves pass through the glass to the feather.
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Hang a phial then on the prime conductor, and it will not charge, tho' you hold it by the coating.
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_Outside_: add, such moisture continuing up to the cork or wire.
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