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Bolton, Henry Carrington (28 January 1843–19 November 1903), chemist and historian, was born in New York City, the only child of Jackson Bolton, a physician, and Anna Hinman North. Bolton graduated from Columbia College in 1862 after showing aptitude in mathematics and chemistry. Over the next four years he studied chemistry with some of the best minds in Europe: Jean-Baptiste-André Dumas at the Sorbonne and Charles-Adolphe Wurtz of the École de Médicine in Paris; Robert Wilhelm Bunsen, Hermann Franz Moritz Kopp, and Gustav Robert Kirchhoff at the University of Heidelberg; Friedrich Wöhler at Göttingen; and August Wilhelm von Hofmann of the University of Berlin. In 1866, the year his father died, he was awarded a Ph.D. at the University of Göttingen for his work “On the Fluorine Compounds of Uranium.” Throughout his stay in Europe, Bolton traveled the whole of the Continent, particularly in Switzerland, where he became an expert alpine climber....

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Cole, George Watson (06 September 1850–10 October 1939), librarian and bibliographer, was born in Warren, Litchfield County, Connecticut, the son of Munson Cole, a businessman and inventor, and Antoinette Fidelia Taylor. Cole studied at both Phillips and Exeter Academies and had some interest in literature. In 1865 his father died, and two years later his mother married Levi W. Thrall, a widower with nine children, of Guilford, Connecticut. In 1872 he married one of his stepsisters, Martha A. Thrall, and then taught at a small country school in Litchfield County. Within one year of his marriage, his wife died. While continuing to teach, he took up the study of law, and in 1876 he was admitted to the bar and practiced at Plymouth, Litchfield County. At this time he also mastered takigraphy, or shorthand, Lindsley’s System, which he would use for the rest of his life. In 1877 he married Louise E. Warner of New Haven, Connecticut; they had no children. He continued his private law practice in Plymouth, taking on the politically unpopular job of prosecuting liquor violations. In addition to his law duties, to supplement his income, he wrote articles for a small paper in a neighboring county. He noted later in his unpublished autobiography that these early endeavors were unfulfilling....

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Darton, Nelson Horatio (17 December 1865–28 February 1948), geological mapper, groundwater specialist, and bibliographer, was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of William Darton, Jr., a shipbuilder and civil engineer, and Caroline Matilda Thayer. Darton was a self-trained geologist who dropped out of public school before the age of thirteen to apprentice as a chemist in his uncle’s business. He became a member of the American Chemical Society at age sixteen and shortly thereafter started his own business, selling distilled water. As a practical chemist he became interested in minerals and collected in New Jersey. By age seventeen, Darton had spoken before the New York Academy of Sciences and published his first paper. The conclusion he derived from fieldwork was that some of the rock strata in eastern New Jersey were ancient lava flows, a new concept at that time, but one that was immediately accepted....

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Deinard, Ephraim (11 May 1846–24 June 1930), Hebrew author, bibliographer, and bookdealer, was born in Shossmaken, Courland, Russia, the son of Jekuthiel Gerson Deinard and Leah Cohen. In addition to attending traditional schools of Jewish learning, he also studied secular subjects with private tutors. By age eighteen he was contributing articles on current issues to the Hebrew weekly ...

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Eames, Wilberforce (12 October 1855–06 December 1937), bibliographer and librarian, was born in Newark, New Jersey, the son of Nelson Eames, a farmer and country schoolmaster, and Harriet Phoebe Crane. At the age of six Eames moved with his family to East New York, later a part of Brooklyn, where his father opened a stationery shop. He would reside in Brooklyn for the remainder of his life....

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Evans, Charles (13 November 1850–08 February 1935), librarian and bibliographer, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Charles Peter Evans, a mariner, and Mary Ewing. Both of his parents dying in his first nine years, Evans in 1859 was sent to the Boston Farm and Trades School. Later in life he spoke affectionately of his seven years there. At sixteen he was placed by Dr. ...

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Ford, Worthington Chauncey (16 February 1858–07 March 1941), historical editor and bibliographer, was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Gordon Lester Ford, a businessman, civic and cultural leader, and bibliophile, and Emily Ellsworth Fowler, an author and a granddaughter of Noah Webster...

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Foster, Jeannette Howard (03 November 1895–26 July 1981), librarian and bibliographer, was born in Oak Park, Illinois, to Winslow Howard Foster, a civil engineer, and Anna Mabel Burr. Lacking a son, Winslow Foster had high expectations for his firstborn daughter. She grew up hearing stories about her courageous paternal ancestors who faced witchcraft allegations at Salem, Massachusetts, in 1692 and a cousin, ...

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Garrison, Fielding Hudson (05 November 1870–18 April 1935), medical librarian, bibliographer, and historian, was born in Washington, D.C., the son of John Rowzee Garrison II, a comptroller for the federal government, and Jennie Davis. Garrison graduated from Washington Central High School in 1886. After a year’s concentration at home on music and college preparation, he matriculated at Johns Hopkins University in 1887. There he focused on classical and modern languages, with some physics and mathematics, graduating in 1890. Garrison’s facility in languages and literature was apparent throughout his career and in his correspondence....

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Goff, Frederick Richmond (23 April 1916–26 September 1982), rare-book librarian, was born in Newport, Rhode Island, the son of Francis Shubael Goff, an insurance executive, and Amelia Seabury. Goff attended Brown University, where he received an A.B. in 1937 and an M.A. in 1939. While still an undergraduate at Brown, Goff began work as the assistant to Margaret B. Stillwell of the Annmary Brown Memorial Library and editor of the Second Census of ...

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Goldstein, Fanny (1888–26 December 1961), librarian and bibliographer, was born in Kamanetsk-Padolsk, Russia, the daughter of Philip Goldstein and Bella Spillberg. Soon after she was born, her family emigrated to the United States, settling in the North End in Boston, Massachusetts, by 1900. Because her father died at an early age, leaving her mother with five children, Goldstein’s education was limited. There are no records of her attendance at school after the ninth grade. Later, as a young librarian, she took a few courses as a special student at Simmons College, Boston College, and Harvard University, but she never completed a degree....

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Belle da Costa Greene. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-91222).

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Greene, Belle da Costa (26 November 1879–10 May 1950), library director, bibliographer, and art connoisseur, was born Belle Marion Greener, the daughter of Richard Greener, a lawyer and Republican party activist, and Genevieve Ida Fleet Greener. Her place of birth was probably Washington, D.C., where her father held a variety of jobs. But specifics concerning Greene's childhood and education are scarce because she preferred to keep them a mystery. Apparently, she attended Teachers College in New York City, where the family had relocated after Richard Greener was rewarded with a patronage job for his efforts on behalf of the Republican party. Around 1897, Belle Marion Greener's parents separated, the children staying with their mother, who within a few years changed the surname to Greene and some years thereafter altered her maiden name from Fleet to Van Vliet. During this time the Greenes fully “passed” in the white world, and Belle da Costa Greene (who claimed for herself nonexistent Portuguese forebears) never acknowledged her African lineage....

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Griffin, Appleton Prentiss Clark (24 July 1852–16 April 1926), librarian and bibliographer, was born in Wilton, New Hampshire, the son of Moses Porter Griffin, a machinist, and Charlotte Helen Clark. The family moved to Medford, Massachusetts, in 1854 and after some public schooling there Griffin went to work at the Boston Public Library as a runner in 1865. He continued his education with private tutors and, rising steadily, he succeeded to more responsible positions: assistant (1869), assistant custodian (1872), custodian in the shelf department (1875), custodian of the building (1889), and finally keeper of books (1890), with extended duties in the acquisition of material. On 23 October 1878 he married Emily Call Osgood, with whom he had four children....

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Griswold, William McCrillis (09 October 1853–03 August 1899), librarian, bibliographer, and indexer, was born in Bangor, Maine, the son of Rufus Wilmot Griswold, a minister, editor, and writer, and Harriet Stanley McCrillis. Griswold was raised in Bangor, graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy in 1871, and attended Harvard University from 1871 to 1875. After graduating from Harvard he traveled in Europe for several years. In 1882 he married Anne Deering Merrill, with whom he had four children....

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Howe, James Lewis (04 August 1859–20 December 1955), chemist and bibliographer of the platinum metals, was born in Newburyport, Massachusetts, the son of Francis Augustine Howe, a physician, and Mary Frances Lewis. The Howe family was noted for its progressive and liberal outlook. Howe originally intended to become a physician like his father, but during high school in Newburyport he became interested in chemistry. He received his B.A. degree in 1880 from Amherst College, his father’s alma mater....

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Jackson, William Alexander (25 July 1905–18 October 1964), librarian and bibliographer, was born in Bellows Falls, Vermont, the son of Charles Wilfred Jackson, a Baptist clergyman, and Alice Mary Fleming. The family moved to Canada and then to South Pasadena, California, where Jackson had his schooling, graduating from the local high school in 1922. At an early age, inspired by writings of the bibliophile A. Edward Newton, and stimulated by proximity to the newly founded (1919) Huntington Library (its first librarian, ...

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Jewett, Charles Coffin (12 August 1816–09 January 1868), librarian and bibliographer, was born in Lebanon, Maine, the son of Paul Jewett, a congregational minister, and Eleanor Masury Punchard. He grew up in Salem, Massachusetts, and graduated from the Latin School in 1831. He matriculated at Dartmouth College, but within a year he transferred to Brown University, from which he received a B.A. as the youngest member of his class. After two years of teaching at the Uxbridge (Mass.) Academy, feeling himself drawn to missionary work, he entered Andover Theological Seminary. His love of books attracted the attention of the librarian Oliver A. Taylor, who invited him to help prepare a catalog of the entire library. Already at Brown, Jewett and a fellow student had arranged and cataloged the more than 1,000 books of the Philermenian Society, the oldest and largest of the student libraries. Assisting Taylor on the alphabetical catalog introduced Jewett to library work, and after its publication in 1838 he was appointed acting librarian of the seminary. With his 1840 M.A. in hand, he booked passage on a ship for Palestine and Asia, in part for missionary purposes. Confirmation of its sailing reached him too late, having been incorrectly addressed. He resigned himself to this fateful turn of events and took the office of principal of Day’s Academy in Wrentham, Massachusetts. In the fall of 1841 he joyfully accepted an offer to become the first full-time librarian of Brown University. A month after taking up his duties, he wrote on 12 November to his friend David Greene Haskins, “I’m a real bibliomaniac & am always happy in a Library.” In less than two years, busy every day of the week except Sunday, he produced a stout alphabetical and subject catalog of the library of Brown University, modeled on Taylor’s 1838 volume that pointed the way to the modern dictionary catalog: author, title, and subject entries in alphabetical order. Simultaneously Jewett was named professor of modern languages and literature, a newly established department of the university. His standing with the administration, including President ...

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Morgan, Dale Lowell (18 December 1914–30 March 1971), historian, editor, and bibliographer, was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, the son of James Lowell Morgan, an office machine salesman, and Emily May Holmes, a schoolteacher. Morgan’s father died when he was six years old, and the burden of caring for the family of four children fell on his mother, who taught in the Salt Lake City public schools. Morgan was a gifted student, but his contracting spinal meningitis at age fourteen seriously changed his life; he was left totally deaf....

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Oko, Adolph S. (05 January 1883–03 October 1944), librarian, Spinozist, and Judaica bibliographer, was born in Rudkov, Russia, to Tebel Oko, a cattle and grain merchant, and Deborah (maiden name unknown). Young Oko was educated in Germany before immigrating to the United States at the age of nineteen. He soon found work at the Astor Library (part of New York Public Library’s Research Collection) working with Abraham Freidus and other American library leaders. It was at the Astor Library that Oko mastered the skills of librarianship. Four years later he was recruited to become the assistant librarian at Cincinnati’s Hebrew Union College. The library had been founded along with the school in 1875 under Rabbi ...