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[p. 43] died February 4, 1738, on his thirty-eighth birthday, leaving widow, a son, James, and at least three daughters. Ann Franklin, during her widowhood of twenty-nine years, conducted the official printing of Rhode Island, established the Newport Mercury, out-lived all her children, and died April 19, 1763. While James Franklin was in Boston, 1722, he established a library of nigh one hundred volumes, which people were free to visit and read. The library contained a set of ‘The Spectator,’ by Addison, recently published, eminent histories, learned works of recent scholarship, and a copy of Shakespeare's works, said to be the first known copy in New England. This library was not a public or circulating library, was free to any one who desired to come to the print shop to read. This print shop became a gathering place for the literates of Boston of two hundred years ago, and was of the type presented by our publishers of today, who afford a quiet corner where readers can come and browse among their newest publications. The spiritual heir of James Franklin was Samuel Hall, who, Isaiah Thomas says, married a daughter of the Franklin home. Samuel Hall entered at once upon the affairs of the printshop in Newport, and his obituary of Ann Franklin would show her to be among the queens of American womanhood. Samuel Hall afterwards established the Essex Gazette, Salem, and at the outbreak of the Revolutionary War printed newspapers and official proclamations for the army and the province. He established a bookstore, printshop and book bindery in Boston. He became the printer of the Massachusetts Historical Society, and was regarded as one of the most correct compositors and proof-readers in Boston. He died in 1807, leaving a second wife, and ‘next of kin,’ Elizabeth, wife of William Barnes of Brookfield, who was without doubt the granddaughter of James and Ann Franklin. Samuel Hall was born in Medford, 1740; he and a brother, Jonathan, were, early in childhood,
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