Benjamin Franklin Peale was an employee and officer of the Philadelphia Mint from 1833 to 1854. He introduced many innovations to the Mint of the United States. He was eventually dismissed amid allegations he had used his position for personal gain. In retirement, Peale continued his involvement in and leadership of many civic organizations.
About Franklin Peale in brief
Benjamin Franklin Peale was an employee and officer of the Philadelphia Mint from 1833 to 1854. He introduced many innovations to the Mint of the United States. He was eventually dismissed amid allegations he had used his position for personal gain. Peale’s education was informal, though he took some classes at the University of Pennsylvania. In retirement, Peale continued his involvement in and leadership of many civic organizations. He died in 1870 and is buried in Philadelphia’s Mount Auburn Cemetery. He is the father of painter Charles Willson Peale and his second wife, the former Elizabeth de Peyster. He also had a son, Eliza, who was born in 1815 and had mental problems. He married Eliza Greatrake at age 24, but she died of a heart attack within a year of their marriage. He went on to have two more children, one of whom died at the age of 25. He later became a well-known inventor and inventor of the first steam-powered coinage press in the U.S., installed in 1836. He had a daughter, Elizabeth, who died in 1838. He then had a second son, Benjamin, who lived until his death in 1854, at age 75. His last child, Benjamin Peale, was born on October 15, 1855. He lived in Philadelphia and died in Philadelphia in 1869, at the same age as his brother Titian, who had died in a car accident in 1856. His son was buried in Mount Auburn, near Philadelphia, where he lived with his wife Eliza and their three children.
He never had any children of his own, but had several step-daughters and two step-granddaughters. In 1833, he was hired by the Mint, and was sent for two years to Europe to study and report back on coining techniques. He returned with plans for improvement, and designed the first Steam-powered Coinage Press in the US. He continued to work for the Mint until 1854 when he was accused of misconduct and dismissed by President Franklin Pierce. He left the Mint that year, and went to live in New York City with his family. He wrote a book about his time at the Mint about the history of the mint, and later wrote a biography of the president of the American Philosophical Society, which had donated a copy of the Society’s first president, Benjamin Franklin, to be published in 1852. He became an expert in machine making, becoming adept as a turner, founder, and draftsman. He made toys as a boy, and surveyed his father’s farm near Germantown. At age 17, he began to work at the Delaware cotton factory of William Young, on the Brandywine River, learning the making of machines. At 19, he became in charge of the factory, and then moved to nearby Philadelphia, which made machinery for card sticking for card making. At 24, he had a child, a girl called Eliza.