Benjamin Franklin

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Negative #7874.25
New York African Free School Collection


circa 1828


James McCune Smith


The New-York Historical Society
James McCune Smith did this drawing of Benjamin Franklin while attending the Mulberry Street School. Smith was a top student and his intellectual brillance was recognized by teachers, students, and school trustees alike. Maybe Smith harbored the secret ambition that he would one day become the African American Benjamin Franklin.


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James McCune Smith, “Benjamin Franklin,” Black Gotham Archive, accessed July 10, 2018,