Other public matters in which the busy printer was engaged were the paving and cleaning of the streets, better street lighting, the organization of a police force and of a fire company.
A pamphlet which Benjamin Franklin published, "Plain Truth", showing the helplessness of the colony against the French and Indians, led to the organization of a volunteer militia, and funds were raised for arms by a lottery. Benjamin Franklin himself was elected colonel of the Philadelphia regiment. In spite of his militarism, Benjamin Franklin retained the position which he held as Clerk of the Assembly, though the majority of the members were Quakers opposed to war on principle.
American Philosophical SocietyThe American Philosophical Society owes its origin to Benjamin Franklin. It was formally organized on his motion in 1743, but the society has accepted the organization of the Junto in 1727 as the actual date of its birth. From the beginning the society has had among its members many leading men of scientific attainments or tastes, not only of Philadelphia, but of the world. In 1769 the original society was consolidated with another of similar aims, and Benjamin Franklin, who was the first secretary of the society, was elected president and served until his death. The first important undertaking was the successful observation of the transit of Venus in 1769, and many important scientific discoveries have since been made by its members and first given to the world at its meetings.