Morris Fuller Benton designed Franklin Gothic for the American Type Founders Company in 1903-1912.Just as early types without serifs were known by the misnomer "grotesque" in Britain, and "grotesk" in Germany, they came to be described as "gothic" in America. There were already many "gothic" typefaces in North America by the early 1900s, but Benton's design was probably influenced by popular "grotesks" from Germany, like Basic Commercial, or D. Stempel AG's Reform. Franklin Gothic may have been named for Benjamin Franklin; however, the design has no historical relationship to that famous early American printer and statesman. Benton was a prolific designer, and he designed several other sans serif fonts, including Alternate Gothic, Lightline Gothic and News Gothic. In fact, News Gothic and Lightline Gothic could be seen as lighter "versions" of Franklin Gothic, and may be used together in the right design.Recognizable aspects of Franklin Gothic include the two-story "a" and "g," subtle stroke contrast, and the thinning of round strokes as they merge into stems. The type appears dark and monotone overall, giving it a robustly modern look. Franklin Gothic is still one of the most widely used sans serifs; it's a suitable choice for newspapers, advertising and posters.Another family with a similarly useful design is Trade Gothic.
Franklin Gothic supports 71 different languages such as Spanish, English, Portuguese, German and French in Latin scripts. (Please note that not all languages are available for all formats.)