Mesmer and Mesmerism

Mesmer and Mesmerism Franz Anton Mesmer (May 23, 1734 – March 5, 1815) trained as a physician in Vienna. He was strongly influenced by the experiments of Maximillian Hell (the astronomer and Jesuit priest) on the effects of magnets on the human body.  Mesmer theorized that there exists a force (or fluid – as it…

How old was Ben?

Ben was born on January 17th, 1706 – or was he? According to most history books, Benjamin Franklin was born on January 17th, 1706 in Boston. However, you will sometimes see this birthdate with the addendum of N.S. or New Style. What does that mean?  Well, there was a change from the (old) Julian calendar…

Stereotypes of Ben

It’s natural to think of “olden times” as being less colorful and alive than our current age. When we think of people from the 1700’s (or any prior era for that matter), they seem to us to live in monotone black and white, without the complexity or vibrancy of present day figures. Compounding that bias…