The Most Amazing American Founder: Benjamin Franklin

The Most Amazing American Founder: Benjamin Franklin

October 27, 2011


Character Actor John Hamant portrayed Benjamin Franklin at age 82, fielding question from the audience.

A native of Baltimore, Maryland, John holds a B.F.A. in Theatrical Production and an M.A. in Acting and Directing from the University of Arizona in Tucson. A life-long interest in history prompted him to turn from a full-time acting career to the educational efforts of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

In his thirty three years with Colonial Williamsburg, John held the positions of Senior Archaeologist, Character Interpreter, Manager (and later Director) of Evening and Special Programs, and Director of Special Events and Protocol. As a Character Interpreter he developed the personages of Lord Botetourt, Peyton Randolph, John Greenhow, Lewis Burwell, and several others.

Beginning in 1993, John developed a portrayal of Franklin Delano Roosevelt for a special Colonial Williamsburg program. He continued to perform as the 32nd president over the next nine years for Colonial Williamsburg programming, and now has the honor of bringing FDR to life for more diverse and distant audiences. Though now semi-retired, John works as a writer, consultant, interpreter of persons of the past, and continues to perform in many of the Colonial Williamsburg evening programs.

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