Ann Smith Franklin

Ann Smith Franklin

America's First Woman Newspaper Editor + First Woman To Write An Almanac + the First Woman Inducted Into the University of Rhode Island's Journalism Hall of Fame
Born Oct 2, 1696

Ann Smith Franklin was an American colonial newspaper printer and publisher. She inherited the business from her husband, James Franklin, brother of Benjamin Franklin. She published the Newport, Rhode Island Mercury, printed an almanac series, and printed Rhode Island paper currency. Ann was the country’s first woman newspaper editor, first woman to write an almanac, and the first woman inducted into the University of Rhode Island's Journalism Hall of Fame.… Read More

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1696 Birth Born on October 2, 1696.


1723 26 Years Old Ann was born in Boston to Samuel and Anna Smith. She married James Franklin in Boston on February 4, 1723. … Read More


1735 38 Years Old After a long illness, James died in Newport in 1735, leaving Ann a widow, aged 39, with three young children to support, one child having preceded him in death.
1736 39 Years Old In 1736, Ann petitioned the General Assembly of Rhode Island, seeking printing work in order to support her family. … Read More


1741 44 Years Old In 1741, she began selling her brother-in-law Benjamin's alamanac, Poor Richard's Alamanac, and in 1745, she printed 500 copies of the Acts and Laws of Rhode Island as a folio edition, her largest commission. … Read More


1761 64 Years Old She took on the printer Samuel Hall, who had been her son-in-law, as her business partner in 1761, forming "Franklin & Hall". Under this imprint, they printed a folio of Rhode Island schedules. Ann Smith Franklin died in Newport in 1763. … Read More
1763 67 Years Old Died on April 16, 1763.
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