Is it True That Electricity was Discovered by an Experiment Conducted by Benjamin Franklin Using a Kite and a Bolt of Lightning?
Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) was known for many things as an inventor. When we were children, we often heard the stories of great men Benjamin Franklin. One of those stories is that Benjamin Franklin discovered electricity when his kite was struck by lightning. Many scholars reject this story. They say the amount of electricity produced by a single bolt of lightning is enough to kill a man on his boots. Others say that Benjamin Franklin himself, never wrote of the experiment, and the only witness was Benjamin Franklin’s son. Further evidence used to debunk this myth is the fact that he had articles published in London by Peter Collinson, one year before the kite experiment. Although this might be a farfetched story, there was indeed a great many experiments to learn about electricity in London at the time. A lightning rod, not a kite, was used.
Among the many great accomplishments in Benjamin Franklin’s lifetime was the invention of bifocal glasses, mapping the Gulf Stream, and an advocate for anti-slavery coalitions. Arguably his most impressive contribution to humanity and science was his serving on a committee of five responsible for drafting the Declaration of Independence, and signing the United States Constitution.