Plans for Celebrating
the Benjamin Franklin
Physicists will scarcely get a chance to recover from the World Year of Physics 2005, celebrating the centenary of Einstein's "miracle year," when they will be asked to remind students and the public about America's first great physicist. An Act of Congress in 2002 created a Federal Commission to recommend government programs to commemorate the 300th anniversary of Benjamin Franklin's birth in 2006. Dr. Rosalind Remer serves as Executive Director of the Federal Commission which operates, with the assistance of the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary, a consortium created in 2000 by the American Philosophical Society, The Franklin Institute, the Library Company of Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the University of Pennsylvania. The office of the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary is the official government point of contact and coordinator for state, local, international, and private sector initiatives organized around the 300th anniversary.
The celebrations organized under the Tercentenary's leadership will aim to educate the general public about Franklin's enduring legacy and to inspire renewed appreciation of the values he embodied. Among other events, an international traveling loan exhibition, Benjamin Franklin: In Search of a Better World, will premiere in Philadelphia before touring five major cities between December 2005 and February 2008, and will continue to exist into the future as a virtual exhibition on the Internet. It will feature the largest collection of Franklin materials original works of art, documents, and artifacts ever assembled, as well as interactive, multi-media installations, in order to demonstrate and explore Franklin's life, character, and achievements. A website, www.benfranklin300.org, is being developed to make publicly available a wealth of information about Tercentenary-related events, new publications on Franklin, new school curriculums for youth, an image bank, time lines, bibliographies, fact sheets, and links to other useful Franklin-related pages on the Internet. For more information contact Nicola Twilley, Director of Public Programming, Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary, 135 S. 18th Street, Suite 702, Philadelphia, PA 19103; phone: (215) 557-0733, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org