Lead: In the early days of the Revolution, the U.S. Congress sent Benjamin Franklin to Paris to convince the French that an American victory was in France’s best interests. Slowly, methodically, Franklin brought them around.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: When in 1785 Thomas Jefferson arrived in Paris to assume the position of American Minister to France, Foreign Minister Charles Gravier, Comte de Vergennes greeted him, “You replace Dr. Franklin, then.” Jefferson said, “I succeed; no one can replace him.” The world-wide fame of Ben Franklin was well-established long before he accepted Congress’ commission to bring the French into an alliance with the U.S.