Benjamin Franklin King

(17 March 1857 - 7 April 1894 / St. Joseph, Michigan)

Benjamin Franklin King
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King was born at St. Joseph, Michigan, March 17, 1857, and died while on a speaking tour at Bowling Green, Kentucky, April 7, 1894. He was married November 27, 1883 to Aseneth Belle Latham, of St. Joseph, Michigan, and the couple had two children, Bennett Latham King and Spencer P. King, aged nine and five, respectively, at the time of his death.

King billed himself as "Ben King, the Sweet Singer of St. Joe". He first came to prominence for a concert given during the World's Columbian Exposition. Introduced to the Press Club of Chicago, he was quickly picked up by Opie Read, who invited King to tour with him, reading his poetry with piano accompaniment.

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  • The great secret of succeeding in conversation is to admire little, to hear much; always to distrust our own reason, and sometimes that of our friends; never to pretend to wit, but to make that of oth...
    Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), U.S. statesman, writer. "Miscellaneous Observations," vol. 1, Complete Works (1728), ed. John Bigelow (1887-1888).
  • ''Here Skugg
    Lies snug
    As a bug
    In a rug''
    Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), U.S. statesman, writer. letter, Sept. 26, 1772. Papers of Benjamin Franklin, vol. 19, ed. W.B. Willcox (1975). On t...
  • ''At twenty years of age, the will reigns; at thirty, the wit; and at forty, the judgment.''
    Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), U.S. statesman, writer. Poor Richard's Almanac, June (1741).
  • ''Opportunity is the great bawd.''
    Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), U.S. statesman, writer. Poor Richard's Almanac, September (1735).
  • ''If you would not be forgotten,
    as soon as you are dead and rotten,
    either write things worth reading
    or do things worth the writing.''
    Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), U.S. statesman, writer. Poor Richard's Almanac, May (1738). This aphorism has also been credited to Pliny.
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