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Engel, Carl (21 July 1883–06 May 1944), composer, editor, and librarian, was born in Paris, France, the son of German parents Joseph C. Engel and Gertrude Seeger. Engel studied music, philosophy, and psychology at the Universities of Strasbourg and Munich. His musical training included individual instruction on the violin and piano and composition with Ludwig Thuille. The Engel family immigrated to the United States in 1905, settling in New York City. Engel quickly affiliated with the city’s young composers and musicians interested in new music and, later, their New Music Society of America, a group dedicated to the performance of American works....

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Gleason, Ralph Joseph (01 March 1917–03 June 1975), journalist and music critic, was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Ralph A. Gleason and Mary Quinlisk. Gleason traced his devotion to jazz music to a day when, suffering from a case of the measles that kept him home from high school in Chappaqua, New York, he heard the music of ...

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Horst, Louis (12 January 1884–23 January 1964), composer, arranger, dance critic and pedagogue, and publisher, was born in Kansas City, Missouri, the son of German immigrants Conrad Horst, a cornet player, and Corline “Lena” Nickell. Horst’s family traveled to San Francisco, California, in 1893, where Louis studied violin and piano. From about 1900 to 1914 he worked as a pianist in pit orchestras and for silent films. While working at a summer resort he met and subsequently married in 1910 eighteen-year-old Bessie (called Betty) Cunningham. They had no children. In 1911 they went to New York City, where he continued to work as a part-time musician and studied composition and piano, but they returned to San Francisco by 1914....

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Peck, George Washington (04 December 1817–06 June 1859), author, editor, and music critic, was born in Rehoboth, Massachusetts, the son of George Washington Peck and Hannah Bliss Carpenter, farmers. Peck entered Brown University in 1833 and, after graduating in 1837, briefly taught school in Kentucky, Indiana, and Ohio. In late 1837 he settled in Cincinnati, where he started the ...

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Root, Frederick Woodman (13 June 1846–08 November 1916), music teacher, author, and editor, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of George Frederick Root, a Civil War songwriter and teacher, and Mary Olive Woodman, a gifted singer. Frederick grew up in musical surroundings and became absorbed in his father’s educational and business pursuits. He studied piano with ...

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Smith, Samuel Francis (21 October 1808–16 November 1895), editor, Baptist clergyman, and author, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Samuel Smith and Sarah Bryant. Young Smith was educated at both the Eliot School and the Boston Latin School, where he received the distinguished Franklin medal in 1825. At Harvard College, Smith became part of the famous class of 1829, which also included ...