Benjamin Franklin (January 17, 1706 – April 17, 1790) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. This great man, who was born to a soap and candle-maker, owned a printing empire, was an accomplished author, politician, postmaster, scientist, musician, inventor, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat. He became wealthy publishing Poor Richard's Almanack and The Pennsylvania Gazette. As a scientist, he was best known for his advancements in physics and for his discoveries and theories in electricity. The lightning rod was once the symbol of science's triumph, and a reminder of the terrifying power of the forces of nature. Today, lightning rod protect millions of buildings. And it was invented by Sir Benjamin Franklin. He invented many other electrical devices, such as bifocals, the Franklin stove, a carriage odometer, and the glass 'armonica'. He played a very big role in setting up the University of Pennsylvania and was elected the first president of the American Philosophical Society. Franklin became a national hero in America when he led the effort to have the unpopular Stamp Act repealed by Parliament.