Even after retiring from politics altogether, Franklin stayed active. In 1789 and 1790 he petitioned the new federal government to abolish slavery and wrote a brilliant satire of pro-slavery arguments. He spent his last days fighting for abolition, the last and perhaps most passionate of his many causes, before failing ill with pleurisy. He died in his home on April 17, 1790, and was publicly mourned on both sides of the Atlantic as one of the greatest men of his era. Franklin's last years were a whirlwind of activity. He got busier and busier–negotiating with France, negotiating with Britain, helping to write the Constitution, running Pennsylvania, fighting against slavery. Through it all he kept up his essays, letters, experiments and observations. He was well into his seventies, then eighties, suffering from boils, gout, and bladder stones. Still, he kept working.
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