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Bowker, R. R. (04 September 1848–12 November 1933), editor, publisher, and reformer, was born Richard Rogers Bowker in Salem, Massachusetts, the son of Daniel Rogers Bowker, a manufacturer of barrel machinery, and Theresa Maria Savory. Although Bowker’s education began in Salem, the majority of it took place in New York City, where his parents moved in 1857 after the failure of a family business. He attended the College of the City of New York, becoming the editor of ...

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Jewett, John Punchard (16 August 1814–14 May 1884), publisher and antislavery activist, was born in Lebanon, Maine, the son of the Reverend Paul Jewett and Eleanor Masury Punchard. Jewett joined the American Anti-Slavery Society in 1835 during a period of volatile and often violent protest. He was an outspoken contributor to antislavery newspapers and counted among his friends antislavery luminaries such as ...

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Kaufmann, Peter (03 October 1800–27 July 1869), publisher and social reformer, was born in Münstermaifeld near Koblenz, Germany, the illegitimate son of Johann Kaufmann, a cavalry officer and civil official, and Hulda (last name unknown). After graduation from the Gymnasium and two years at the University of Berlin attending Hegel’s lectures, Kaufmann emigrated to the United States around 1820. In spite of financial difficulties with his trade as tobacconist in Philadelphia, he married Catherine Wiltz in 1822 and fathered seven surviving children. He studied for the ministry part time but was never ordained. In that study he was particularly impressed by the ideas of Johannes Tauler, who emphasized the unity of man and God through love and Jesus’s sharing of poverty with the simple folk of his time. Kaufmann met ...

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Wallace, DeWitt (12 November 1889–30 March 1981), editor and publisher, was born William Roy (or Roy William) DeWitt Wallace in St. Paul, Minnesota, the son of James T. Wallace, an educator, and Janet Davis. DeWitt’s high marks enabled him to skip two grades in elementary school, but his academic achievements after that were spotty. In high school, he was better known for pranks and athletic skills. Wallace enrolled at Macalester College, a Presbyterian institution where his father was president. After his sophomore year he took a job at a bank in Colorado. In his spare time, he read widely in current publications and formed a habit of making notes on articles he found most appealing and on his own ideas. He then returned to school at the University of California, Berkeley. During a visit to Tacoma, Washington, a friend introduced him to Canadian-born Lila Bell Acheson, who later became his wife and business partner....

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Ward, Maisie (04 January 1889–28 January 1975), Catholic writer, publisher, and social activist, was born in Shanklin, Isle of Wight, England, the daughter of Wilfrid Ward, the editor of the Dublin Review, and Josephine Mary Hope, a novelist. Baptized Mary Josephine, but always known as Maisie, she was a child of Victorian gentry that had Oxford Movement converts on both sides of the family. She grew up in an atmosphere where religion was pervasive; according to her son, Wilfrid Sheed, an essential key to understanding his mother was that her family lived and breathed in a Catholic culture in which being an “ardent, devout Catholic” was “taken for granted.”...