William  Franklin

William Franklin (1731 - 1813)

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William Franklin
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvaniamap
Ancestors ancestors
Son of and [mother unknown]
Brother of [half] and [half]
Husband of — married in St George's Hanover Square, Middlesex, Englandmap
Husband of — married [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in London, Englandmap
Franklin-7 created 3 Jul 2008 | Last modified
This page has been accessed 7,194 times.

Categories: Franklin Name Study.


William Franklin (1731 - 1813) The illegitimate son of Benjamin Franklin. His mother's name was never revealed. Some suggested that Deborah may have been his mother but that Ben took all the blame to protect her honor because they were not yet married.

Young William traveled with his father, attending school in England. On September 4, 1762, William married Elizabeth Downes. They had one son, William Temple Franklin. Upon returning to America, William became Royal Governor of New Jersey. When the Revolution began, William remained loyal to England.

With Ben in America and William in England, father and son found themselves on opposite sides of battle during the American Revolution. This forever strained their relationship. Ben's Last Will and Testament left nearly none of his wealth to William, claiming that if William's England had won the war, Ben would have never had any wealth to leave.

1776 New Jersey militia, acting on resolution of Congress, deprives William Franklin of official functions as royal governor of New Jersey in January; confined to his home in Perth Amboy, he is arrested in June and sent under guard to Connecticut to be imprisoned. Franklin, in Congress, declines to intercede for his son.

William FRANKLIN stayed in London, ENGLAND and supported the war on the side of ENGLAND. He had married an English wife and remained in ENGLAND with her.


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No known carriers of William's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests.

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William Franklin
William Franklin

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On 8 Jan 2016 at 12:03 GMT Lisa Franklin RN, BSN wrote:

Franklin-7 and Franklin-6825 appear to represent the same person because: Same person, please merge. Thank you.

On 27 Dec 2013 at 20:09 GMT Jeanne (Lunn) Aloia wrote:

Please consider the proposed merges on the lower left of this page. If they are duplicates, please approve the merges.

Thanks! Jeanne Lunn Aloia

William is 17 degrees from Abby Glann, 17 degrees from AJ Jacobs, 21 degrees from Martin Luther King and 17 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II Windsor on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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