When the state Supreme Court Declared the case invalid in 1835, many of the congregation's graves were moved, but some remain to this day, covered over by the lawns and bushes. In recent years a memorial plaque has been placed near the central pool. During the Revolution the square also held a powder house, and in the War of 1812 it served as a drilling ground for troops. In 1825, then years after the city began to level and plant the ground, the square assumed its current name in honor of Benjamin Franklin.
As the nearby residential developments of the 19th century gave way to 20th century warehouses, industry and other commercial operations, the square became less popular as a place for walking and recreation. With the building of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge and the Vine Street Expressway, it has become increasingly isolated, despite its proximity to Independence Mall. Although it currently has playground equipment, a small baseball diamond, a fenced central pool, colonial-style lamps, and a large collection of benches among the trees, Franklin Square goes relatively unnoticed by passersby. Near the southeast corner is a memorial to the Philadelphia police and firefighters who died in the line of duty, with honor rolls listing the names of the fallen.
The square's eastern border also offers a close-up view of Bolt of Lightning - a memorial to Benjamin Franklin, which stands across 6th Street in Monument Plaza. A gleaming, 101-foot sculpture by international renowned artist Ismau Noguchi, the Bolt is an angular, stylized rendering of Franklin's legendary electrical lightning experiment involving a kite, a key, and a now-famous thunderstorm.