Benjamin Franklin 2002 | TV Show Watchlist

Benjamin Franklin

Cast & Crew  |  Episode Guide

The life and achievements of America's revolutionary genius are chronciled in his own words (plus those of a parade of historians). Produced by the production team responsible for the 1997 PBS series `Liberty! The American Revolution.'

Premiered: November 19, 2002

Rating: TV-G

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Season 1, Episode 3 The Chess Master

First Aired: November 20, 2002

Conclusion: “The Chess Master” follows “America's native genius,” as historian Keith Arbour calls Franklin, through the final 14 years of his life, nine of which were spent in Paris as the rebellious colonies' ambassador to France. Franklin's first goal (aside from creating the U.S. foreign service on the fly) was to secure financial and military aid. He went about doing it in the same manner as he played chess. “There are always 16 or 32 moves to think of in advance,” says Arbour. And, adds historian H.W. Brands: “He wasn't above moving the pieces.” Richard Easton plays Franklin; Colm Feore narrates.

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The Making of a Revolutionary

Season 1, Episode 2

November 19, 2002

Guest Cast