Bibliography in progress:

Primary Sources

Benjamin Franklin's extant papers and letters are available via Yale.

The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society are online here.

Ørsted, Hans Christian. Selected Scientific Works of. Translated and edited by Karen Jelved, Andrew D. Jackson, and Ole Knudsen. Princeton University Press: 1998.


Secondary Sources

Aitken, Hugh. Syntony & Sparks. University of Princeton Press: 2014.

Assis, Andre Koch Torres and J. P. M. C. Chaib. Ampère's Electrodynamics: Analysis of the Meaning and Evolution of Ampère’s Force between Current Elements, together with a Complete Translation of ... Phenomena, Uniquely Deduced from Experience. Montreal: 2015.

Bertucci, Paola. “Sparks in the dark: the attraction of electricity in the eighteenth century,”  Endeavour Volume 31, Issue 3, Pages 88-93

Brands, H. W. The First American:The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin, Anchor Books: 2002.

Buchwald, Jed Z. The creation of scientific effects : Heinrich Hertz and electric waves

Cantor, Geoffrey, David Gooding, & Frank A.J.L. James. Michael Faraday. Humanities Press, NJ: 1997.

Christensen, Dan Charly. Hans Christian Ørsted : reading nature's mind. Oxford University Press, Oxford: 2013.

Cohen, I. Bernard, “Benjamin Franklin: An Experimental Newtonian Scientist,” Bulletin of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Vol. 5, No. 4 (Jan., 1952), pp. 2-6

Cohen, I. Bernard, “The Two Hundredth Anniversary of Benjamin Franklin's Two Lightning Experiments and the Introduction of the Lightning Rod,” Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, Vol. 96, No. 3 (Jun. 20, 1952), pp. 331-366.

Cohen, I. Bernard, “Franklin’s Scientist Enemies: Real Or Imagined.” in Pennsylvania History. Jan 1998, Vol. 65 Issue 1, p7-20.

Darrigol, Olivier. Electrodynamics from Ampère to Einstein. Oxford University Press: 2000.

Delbourgo, James. A Most Amazing Scene of Wonders: Electricity And Enlightenment in Early America. Harvard University Press: 2006.

Dray, Philip. Stealing God’s Thunder: Benjamin Franklin’s Lightning Rod and the Invention of America, Penguin Random House: 2005.

Fahnestock, Jeannie. Rhetoric in Science

Finn, Bernard S. “An Appraisal Of The Origins Of Franklin’s Electrical Theory,” ISIS: Journal of the History of Science in Society. Sep 1969, Vol. 60 Issue 3, p362-369

Forbes, Nancy & Basil Mahon’s Faraday, Maxwell, and the Electromagnetic Field: How Two Men Revolutionized Physics, Penguin Random House: 2014.

Goldt, Verena. Zentralbegriffe der Elektrizitätsforscher im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert. Peter Lang, Berlin: 1999.

Gooding, David & Frank A.J.L. James (eds) Faraday Rediscovered: Essays on the Life and Work of Michael Faraday, 1791-1867. Stockton Press, NY: 1985.

Gooding, David. “‘Magnetic Curves’ and the Magnetic Field: Experimentation and Representation in the history of a theory,” in The Uses of experiment : studies in the natural sciences, David, Trevor Pinch, and Simon Schaffer (eds). Cambridge University Press, Cambridge: 1989, pp. 183-223.

Hackmann, W. D. Electricity from Glass: The history of the frictional electrical machine, 1600-1850. Alphen aan den Rijn : Sijthoff & Noordhoff, 1978.

Hamilton, James. A Life of Discovery: Michael Faraday, Giant of the Scientific Revolution. Random House, NY: 2002.

Heilbron. J.L.  Electricity in the 17th and 18th Centuries: A Study of Early Modern Physics. University of California Press: 1979.

Several articles by Heilbron

Hirshfeld, Alan. The Electrical Life of Michael Faraday.

Holland, Jocelyn.  German romanticism and science : the procreative poetics of Goethe, Novalis, and Ritter

Kraus, Joe. “Private Libraries in Colonial America,” The Journal of Library History (1974-1987), Vol. 9, No. 1 (Jan., 1974), pp. 31-53

Kuhn, Thomas. 

Lemay, Leo

Mahon, Basil. Oliver Heaviside: Maverick Mastermind of Electricity. The Institution of Engineering and Technology, London: 2009.

Mottelay, Paul Fleury. Bibliographical history of electricity & magnetism, chronologically arranged. C. Griffin & Co. London: 1922. Reprint: M. Martino, New York: 1993.

Neressian, Nancy. Creating scientific concepts

Pangle, The Political Philosophy of Benjamin Franklin

Pera,  Marcello. The Ambiguous Frog: The Galvani-Volta Controversy on Animal Electricity Book. Princeton University Press: 1992.

Riskin, Jessica. “Poor Richard’s Leyden Jar: Electricity and Economy in Franklinist France,” Historical Studies in the Physical and Biological Sciences, 1/1/1998, Vol. 28, Issue 2, p. 301-336

Riskin, Jessica. “Concerning Buffon’s role in the translation of Franklin’s letters into French,” in Buffon un philosophe au Jardin du Roi, ed. Jacques Roger, 1989. pp 281-282

Schechner, Sara J.  “The Art Of Making Leyden Jars And Batteries According To Benjamin Franklin”

Schechner, Sara J. “Benjamin Franklin and a Tale of Two Electrical Machines”

Schiff, Stacy. A Great Improvisation

Schiffer, Michael Brian. Draw the Lightning Down: Benjamin Franklin and Electrical Technology in the Age of Enlightenment, University of Chicago Press: 2006.

Schiffer, Michael Brian

Specht, Benjamin. Physik als Kunst : Die Poetisierung der Elektrizität um 1800, De Gruyter: 2010.

Sobel, Michael J. Light. Chicago:

Steigerwald, Joan. “Figuring Nature: Ritter's Galvanic Inscriptions.” European Romantic Review. 18. 2007. Pp 255-263.

Steigerwald, Joan “The Subject as Instrument: Galvanic Experiments, Organic Apparatus and Problems of Calibration,” in The Uses of Humans in Experiment: Perspectives from the 17th to the 20th Century, eds Erika Dyck and Larry Stewart. Brill: 2016.

Steinle, Friedrich. Exploratory Experiments: Ampère, Faraday, and the Origins of Electrodynamics, University of Pittsburgh Press: 2016. 

Stauffer, Robert C. “Speculation and Experiment in the Background of Oersted's Discovery of  Electromagnetism,” Isis, Vol. 48, No. 1 (Mar., 1957), pp. 33-50

Tatar, Maria M.  “Salvation by Electricity: Science, Poetry, and Naturphilosophie,” in Spellbound: Studies on Mesmerism and Literature. Princeton University Press. (1978)

Tucker, Tom. Bolt Of Fate: Benjamin Franklin And His Fabulous Kite. 2009.

Wallace, Doris B & Howard E. Grub.  Creative people at work : twelve cognitive case studies 

Wood, Gordon. The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin. Penguin Press: 2004.

Wrightson, Nick . ‘‘’[Those with] Great Abilities Have Not Always the Best Information’: How Franklin’s Transatlantic Book-Trade and Scientific Networks Interacted, ca. 1730–1757”