Massachusetts Historical Society


Benjamin Franklin’s Last Bet: The Favorite Founder’s Divisive Death, Enduring Afterlife, and Blueprint for American Prosperity


Michael Meyer

This event will now be held virtually from 6:00-7:00. Register to attend below.

Virtual, $5 fee.

Register to attend online

Benjamin Franklin was not a gambling man, however, at the end of his life he allowed himself a wager on the survival of the United States: a gift of two thousand pounds to Boston and Philadelphia, to be lent out to tradesmen over the next two centuries to jump‑start their careers. Benjamin Franklin’s Last Bet traces the evolution of these twin funds as they age alongside America itself, bankrolling woodworkers to space races. Franklin’s stake in the “leather-apron” class remains in play to this day and offers an inspiring blueprint for our modern era.

Online Event

This event will now be held virtually from 6:00-7:00. Contact if you have any questions. Registrants will receive a confirmation message with attendance information.

Upcoming Events

The Latest