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Fenollosa, Ernest Francisco (18 February 1853–21 September 1908), educator, poet, and Orientalist, was born in Salem, Massachusetts, the son of Manuel Francisco Ciriaco Fenollosa, a Spanish musician who had come to the United States in 1838, and Mary Silsbee, who died when Ernest was eleven. After attending Salem High School, the sensitive and reserved young man entered Harvard College, where he studied with ...

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Holt, Claire (23 August 1901–29 May 1970), Indonesian specialist and journalist, was born Claire Bagg in Riga, Latvia, the daughter of Boris Bagg, a successful leather dealer and manufacturer, and Cecile Hodes. In 1914 the family moved to Moscow, where Claire attended Gymnasiums from 1914 to 1918. In 1920 she married Bernard Hopfenberg, and in 1921 the couple emigrated to the United States. They settled in New York, and Claire gave birth to a son in 1927. Her husband died in 1928....

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Jones, George Heber (14 August 1867–11 May 1919), Methodist missionary and student of Korean culture, was born in Mohawk, New York, the son of Charles Edward Jones and Susan Cosser. Educated in the public schools of Utica, New York, he left for the Korean mission field at the age of twenty in 1887, less than three years after the Methodist church had begun its work there. American Methodists William B. Scranton and Henry Gerhardt Appenzeller had reached Seoul, Korea, early in 1885 and realized the daunting obstacles they faced, principally profound cultural differences and local suspicions. But they persevered and in 1886 called for two new men to augment their work. In 1887 Jones accompanied Franklin Ollinger, a veteran missionary, to Seoul. Two years later other Methodist missionaries arrived, notably women. This small staff endured continual hardships, including disease and political turmoil, in establishing an enduring Methodist presence in Korea....

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Owen J. Lattimore Owen J. Lattimore, testifying before a Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee, with his attorney, Abe Fortas [left], 1950. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-104489).

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Lattimore, Owen (29 July 1900–31 May 1989), columnist and Asia expert, was born in Washington, D.C., the son of David Lattimore, a professor of modern languages, and Margaret Barnes. In 1901 the family moved to Shanghai, where Lattimore’s father taught in Chinese government schools. In 1912 Lattimore’s mother took the children to study in Switzerland. When World War I broke out, Lattimore went to school in England for five years but failed to win a scholarship to Oxford....

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McCawley, James D. (30 March 1938–10 April 1999), linguist and East Asian specialist, was born in Glasgow, Scotland, the son of James Q. McCawley, a journalist, and Monica Maud Bateman McCawley, a physician. His full name originally was James Latrobe Quillan McCawley ( ...

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Morse, Edward Sylvester (18 June 1838–20 December 1925), biologist and expert on Japanese culture, was born in Portland, Maine, the son of Jonathan Kimball Morse and Jane Seymour Beckett. His father was a partner in a firm that dealt in beaver furs and buffalo robes, and his mother was said to be “interested in all branches of science.” As a boy Morse collected shells, and at the age of seventeen he joined the Portland Society of Natural History. At the encouragement of other naturalists in the society, Morse began to study the land snails of his state and to correspond with leading American conchologists. After attending preparatory schools he worked as a draftsman in the locomotive shops of the Maine Central Railroad, presumably to save for college. There he demonstrated a fine ability in sketching and creating line drawings, which he used to advantage in his later publications....

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Reischauer, Edwin Oldfather (15 October 1910–01 September 1990), educator and diplomat, was born in Tokyo, Japan, the son of August Karl Reischauer, a missionary of long residence in Japan, and Helen Sidwell. He lived in Japan until his graduation from the American School in Tokyo in 1927. That year, Reischauer entered Oberlin College, where he earned an A.B. degree, and from there went to Harvard University for graduate study. By the time he entered Harvard, in 1931, he knew that he wanted to become an expert in East Asian studies; in order to receive further specialized training, which was not then available in the United States, he went in 1933 to the University of Paris, where he continued his study of Japanese and Chinese. Two years later he returned to Japan to conduct research for his dissertation. The contrast between the more open, cosmopolitan Japan he remembered from the 1920s and the militaristic and chauvinistic Japan he experienced in the 1930s made a deep impression on Reischauer and provided the point of departure for his thinking about modern Japanese history. For the time being, however, he concentrated on his studies, working on a translation of the diary of Ennin, a ninth-century Buddhist monk who traveled and studied in China. While in Japan, Reischauer married Adrienne Danton, an alumna of Oberlin, in 1935. They were to have three children....

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William W. Rockhill. Photograph by Frances Benjamin Johnston, late nineteenth or early twentieth century. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-96755).

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Rockhill, William Woodville (01 April 1854–08 December 1914), Orientalist and diplomat, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Thomas Cadwallader Rockhill, a lawyer, and Dorothy Anna Woodville. The death of his father when William was ten months old, the consequent decision of his energetic mother to move to France, and the near poverty in which he and his brother were raised shaped Rockhill’s childhood, remarkable education, cosmopolitan outlook, and personality. While a cadet at the rigorous École Spéciale Militaire de St. Cyr, Rockhill began his lifetime fascination with the Orient and his serious study of its civilizations and languages, especially Chinese, Sanskrit, and Tibetan. After Rockhill graduated with honors from St. Cyr in 1873, this self-driven, stoical perfectionist served three years as sublieutenant in the French Foreign Legion in Algeria. In 1876 he resigned his commission, returned as a virtual stranger to the United States, and married Caroline Adams Tyson, with whom he had two children....