Ben Franklin’s Macaroni Art

A picture of a boat with a man in a tri-corn hat made of pasta glued with candle wax
Ben Franklin was taken by the sea and by boats at a young age and envisioned a life on the sea. In anticipation of this, he became a deft swimmer and thought about boats.

This love of aquatics is seen in this curious exhibit, a strange collage of pasta shaped into a simple sailing vessel on the sea. The pasta is affixed to the craft paper with melted candles and it is this that earns familial ire, and is noted in an admonitory report from his public grammar school teacher.

While the report has long ago been lost, a description of its content was found in the journal of Ben’s father, Josiah, who was a tallow chandler. According to this source, the note chastised the lad for his use of the expensive candles to adhere the material. His teacher was certain that the use of the more expensive items was a sign that young Benjamin lacked appropriate judgement and was given to frivolous waste of expensive materials. She suspected that the materials were taken without permission, and indicated the lad was destined for a life of sloth and criminal behavior.

There are some who note that the feather in the tri-corn hat is also made of macaroni.