Joseph Priestley was a friend of Benjamin Franklin, who like Franklin was experimenting with electricity before turning his full attention to chemistry in the 1770s.
Joseph Priestley - Co-Discovery of OxygenPriestley was the first chemist to prove that oxygen was essential to combustion and along with Swede Carl Scheele is credited with the discovery of oxygen by isolating oxygen in its gaseous state. Priestley named the gas "dephlogisticated air", later renamed oxygen by Antoine Lavoisier. Joseph Priestley also discovered hydrochloric acid, nitrous oxide (laughing gas), carbon monoxide, and sulfur dioxide.
Soda WaterIn 1767, the first drinkable manmade glass of carbonated water (soda water) was invented by Joseph Priestley.
Joseph Priestley published a paper called Directions for Impregnating Water with Fixed Air (1772), which explained how to make soda water. However, Priestley did not exploit the business potential of any soda water products.