The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Read by Gary Gilberd

(4.3 stars; 1032 reviews)

Franklin wrote his autobiography in the form of an extended letter to his son. While recording the events of his life, he adds instructions for good living which makes this work America’s first “How to Succeed” book. Edited by Frank Woodworth Pine (1869-1919). (Summary by Gary) (7 hr 30 min)


Introduction 19:16 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 1 Ancestry and Early Youth in Boston 25:49 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 2 Beginning Life as a Printer 24:04 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 3 Arrival in Philadelphia 16:47 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 4 First Visit to Boston 18:00 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 5 Early Friends in Philadelphia 10:07 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 6 First Visit to London 29:46 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 7 Beginning Business in Philadelphia 34:20 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 8 Business Success and First Public Service 27:50 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 9 Plan for Attaining Moral Perfection 31:41 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 10 Poor Richard's Almanac and Other Activities 21:33 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 11 Interest in Public Affairs 17:27 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 12 Defense of the Province 21:28 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 13 Public Services and Duties 32:29 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 14 Albany Plan of Union 5:23 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 15 Quarrels with the Proprietary Governors 7:53 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 16 Braddock's Expedition 26:41 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 17 Franklin's Defense of the Frontier 19:05 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 18 Scientific Experiments 9:26 Read by Gary Gilberd
Chapter 19 Agent of Pennsylvania in London 35:20 Read by Gary Gilberd
Appendix 16:14 Read by Gary Gilberd


(5 stars)

This is one of the great classics of American history, but it's almost ruined by the reader. He sounds like a 3rd grader reading aloud to the class for the first time, halting between words and pausing in the wrong places. He mispronounces words frequently, even 3 on 1 page. I know LibriVox depends on volunteers, but there should be some minimal standards.

unfortunately could not finish

(2 stars)

i am sure this is a fascinating book, but the reader is so choppy in his words & use of punction. there is no fluidity to it, so iy makes it very hard to listen to. i have tried twice & never got to the end of chapter one. i will just have to read this one myself the old fashioned way.

Can't stand this recording

(1 stars)

It's so interesting listening to this recording! The reader is speaking the text, but when I listen it sounds like a different language to me. The reader is attempting to sound stoic, and giving no importance to the meaning of the words he is reading. it ends up sounding like an alien language to me and I had to give up after 10 minutes of being entirely confused

The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

(5 stars)

I had wanted to learn of the contents of this book for many years. Little did I know. How much wisdom and council to improve my daily life; would be revealed. Much thanks to librovox and the volunteers who make listening possible.

The book is a must read, the reader does not convey this.

(1.5 stars)

The book lost the flow of Franklin’s writing. I think that the reader is trying his best and I have it a college try of listening. His reading adds punctuation in speaking. Read as, “Of. Which. The, following.” This flow sliced the writing, “...of which the following.” When speaking polysyllabic words, “conventicles,” does not need to be punched out when read.

wise counsel for anyone seeking improvement

(5 stars)

Excellent advice for living, and much wisdom imparted by a man of diligent and frugal accomplishment. The reader annunciates clearly but his pace stumbles frequently causing the listener to needs give extra attention to what is being said in order to understand some parts. The value of Franklin's insights far out weighs any shortcomings in the reading.


(0.5 stars)

Very sorry, but it is so choppy, stilted,and broken that it is too much mental work to reassemble the words and simultaneously appreciate the great man's meaning. There must be many people who could read ahead and produce a fluid version worthy of the 18th century prose.

horrible audiobook

(0.5 stars)

It might be a good read but the audio is terrible I couldn’t make it past the first chapter. Sorry but reading audiobooks is not your calling in life, someone else has to re-record this.