Benjamin Franklin: the Classic American

Essay by kshue2007High School, 11th gradeA+, April 2006

download word file, 2 pages 5.0

"What then is the American?" Jean de Crévecoeur stated in his story Letters from an American Farmer. His description of an American is a blessed man that should be idealized by Europeans, because in America you can marry whomever you fall in love with, and you can go from dirt poor to one of the wealthiest men in less than a lifetime. His ideas of an American describe many people but one man that should stand out in all minds would be Benjamin Franklin. Benjamin Franklin left eighty-four years worth of brilliant footprints on this country that few since have been able to come within a short distance of following.

Benjamin Franklin was everything that Crévecoeur described in his depiction of an American. Benjamin Franklin is the ideal image of the hard working American. Crévecoeur states, "Here the rewards of his industry follow with equal steps the progress of his labor...."

Benjamin Franklin left his home in Philadelphia early in his teenage years, eventually taking root in New York City with a mere twenty- five cents in his pocket. Through hard work and perseverance he quickly became one of the most prominent and wealthiest Americans of his era. He was known to be among the most patriotic of men also. He stands alone as the only man in history to sign all four documents that helped to create the United States, which include the Declaration of Independence, the Treaty of Alliance, Amity and Commerce with France, the Treaty of Paris between England, France and the United States, and finally the Constitution. Crévecoeur states that Americans love this country and Benjamin Franklin truly did. When we needed our first Ally to aid us in our quest for freedom, it was Benjamin Franklin that traveled across the ocean to persuade France...