You will sometimes read that DST was originally Ben Franklin’s idea. Franklin did publish an anonymous pamphlet, in 1784, suggesting that Parisians could cut the cost of lighting homes at night by getting up earlier as the days lengthen in spring (the pamphlet was a bit of a satire; he also suggested a tax on curtains, and firing cannons at dawn). This isn’t strictly speaking a DST proposal, as you can’t really have Daylight Saving Time system as we understand it, without a system of time zones. However, in 1895, a postal clerk and amateur entomologist named George Hudson, whose job gave him time after work to collect insects, suggested to the Wellington Philosophical Society that clocks be set ahead in the Spring in order to allow more usable hours of daylight… More at Hodinkee.
Incredibly influential. The jury is still out, however, on if it is a good thing or not.