Myth: Benjamin Franklin Invented Daylight Saving Time
The Real Story: Thanks to An Economical Project, a satirical essay Franklin wrote in 1784 urging Parisians to adopt an earlier sleeping schedule, the Founding Father is often credited with “inventing” daylight saving time. Actually, that honour belongs to William Willett, a British builder. While on an early morning horseback ride on the outskirts of London in 1905, Willett theorized that if the United Kingdom moved its clocks forward by 80 minutes between April and October, Britons would be able to enjoy more sunlight. Willett spent much of his own personal fortune trying to persuade British Parliament to embrace the idea, but he died in 1915 without seeing his dream come to fruition.
Here are the world’s most contagious myths and misconceptions—debunked!