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Allen, Frederick Lewis (05 July 1890–13 February 1954), editor and social historian, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Frederick Baylies Allen, a clergyman, and Alberta Hildegarde Lewis. Allen was educated at Groton School and Harvard University, where he received his B.A. in English in 1912 and his M.A. in 1913 in modern languages. Allen edited the literary magazine at Harvard and subsequently taught composition there for two years; he became an assistant editor at the ...

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Arthur, Timothy Shay (06 June 1809–06 March 1885), editor, temperance crusader, and novelist, was born in Orange County, New York, the son of William Arthur and Anna Shay, occupations unknown. He was named for his maternal grandfather, Timothy Shay, an officer in the revolutionary war. By his mid-twenties, Arthur had yet to identify a profession or receive an education. In the 1830s, however, he began an intense program of self-education as well as a writing career as a journalist in Baltimore, where he quickly became a well-known and articulate champion of numerous social causes including temperance, Swedenborgianism, feminism, and socialism. In 1836 he married Eliza Alden; they had seven children....

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Barber, Jesse Max (05 July 1878–23 September 1949), African-American journalist, dentist, and civil rights activist, was born in Blackstock, South Carolina, the son of Jesse Max Barber and Susan Crawford, former slaves. Barber studied in public schools for African-American students and at Friendship Institute in Rock Hill, South Carolina, where he graduated as valedictorian. In 1901 he completed the normal school course for teachers at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina, and afterward entered Virginia Union University in Richmond. There Barber was president of the literary society and edited the ...

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Bloomer, Amelia Jenks (27 May 1818–30 December 1894), temperance and women's rights reformer and editor, temperance and women’s rights reformer and editor, was born in Homer, New York, the daughter of Ananias Jenks, a clothier, and Lucy Webb. She received a basic education in Homer’s district schools and by the age of seventeen was teaching in Clyde, New York. After a year of teaching, Bloomer became a governess and tutor for a Waterloo, New York, family....

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Edward W. Bok. In the background are, from left to right, Senators George H. Moses, James Reed, and T. H. Caraway. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-103937).

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Bok, Edward William (09 October 1863–09 January 1930), editor, philanthropist, and peace advocate, was born in den Helder, Holland, the son of William John Hidde Bok and Sieke Gertrude van Herwerden, who, having lost their inherited fortune through unwise investments, immigrated to the United States in 1870. They settled in Brooklyn, where Bok and his older brother learned English in public school. With his father at first unable to find steady employment, Bok delivered newspapers, worked in a bakery, and wrote up childrens’ parties for the ...

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Crothers, Thomas Davison (21 September 1842–12 January 1918), pioneer physician in the medical treatment of inebriety, temperance advocate, and editor, was born in West Charlton, New York, the son of Robert Crothers and Electra Smith. Members of Crothers’s family had taught surgery and medicine at Edinburgh University since the eighteenth century, and, with this influence, after attending the Fort Edward Seminary, he enrolled in Albany Medical College in 1862. With the outbreak of the Civil War Crothers signed on as a medical cadet at the Ira Harris Military College. Awarded his M.D. in 1865, Crothers continued his studies at Long Island College Hospital until he began his medical practice in West Galway, New York, in 1866. Four years later Crothers left West Galway for Albany, where, at his alma mater, he became assistant to the chair of the practice of medicine, lecturer on hygiene, and instructor in physical diagnosis. In 1875 he married Sarah Walton; the couple had no children. He also took a new position in Binghamton, New York, home of the nation’s first hospital for inebriates, the New York State Inebriate Asylum. There Crothers received his formal introduction to the medical treatment of inebriety. In 1878 he established his own private inebriate asylum in Hartford, Connecticut, the Walnut Hill Asylum (known after 1880 as the Walnut Lodge Hospital)....

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Max Eastman Photograph by Arnold Genthe, 1916. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-G432-1374).

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William L. O’Neill

Eastman, Max (04 January 1883–25 March 1969), writer, was born Max Forrester Eastman in Canandaigua, New York, the son of Samuel Elijah Eastman and Annis Bertha Ford, both ordained ministers of the Congregational church. From the age of eleven to eighteen he lived in Elmira, New York, where his mother was associate pastor of Park Church. He graduated from Williams College in 1905, and from 1907 to 1910 he studied philosophy under ...

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Everett, Robert (02 January 1791–25 February 1875), Congregational minister, publisher, and reformer, was born in Gronant, North Wales, the son of Lewis Everett and Jane Parry. The manager of a lead mine, Lewis Everett was also a Congregational lay preacher who raised his eleven children in a deeply religious atmosphere. Having decided at eighteen to enter the ministry, Robert studied theology at the Independent College at Wrexham and in 1815 was ordained pastor of the Swan Lane Welsh Congregational Church at Denbigh....

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Fixx, James Fuller (23 April 1932–20 July 1984), writer, was born in New York City, the son of Calvin Henry Fixx, a journalist, and Marlys Fuller. After completing his primary education, he attended the Garden Country Day School in Jackson Heights, New York, from 1947 to 1948, and he graduated from the Trinity School in New York City in 1951. Fixx attended Indiana University from 1951 to 1952 and then served as a clerk in the U.S. Army from 1952 to 1954 in Pusan, South Korea. In 1955 he entered Oberlin College and majored in English literature, with the goal of becoming either a journalist or a teacher. While studying at Oberlin, Fixx worked as a reporter and feature writer for the Oberlin ...

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Flower, Benjamin Orange (19 October 1858–24 December 1918), editor and social reformer, was born near Albion, Illinois, the son of Alfred Flower and Elizabeth Orange. Albion was founded in 1818 by Alfred Flower’s father, George Flower, an immigrant from England. Benjamin Orange Flower studied at a private school near Albion on the farm of his father, a Disciples of Christ minister. At eleven he had already compiled a self-illustrated primary schoolbook and a long moral novel. Later, young Flower moved with his family to Evansville, Indiana, where he attended high school. Intending to become a minister like his father and an older brother, George Edward Flower, Benjamin Orange Flower attended the Disciples of Christ’s School of the Bible at Kentucky University in Lexington. Changing theological perspectives, which ultimately led him to Unitarianism, sent Flower back to Albion, Illinois. There he won control of a local four-page newsletter, the ...

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Fuller, Margaret (23 May 1810–19 July 1850), author and feminist, was born Sarah Margaret Fuller in Cambridgeport, Massachusetts, the daughter of Timothy Fuller, a lawyer, and Margaret Crane. Her father taught his oldest child reading at age three and Latin at age six, but Fuller’s education grew eclectic in later childhood when she was left largely to her own resources. “To excel in all things should be your constant aim; mediocrity is obscurity,” her father wrote to Margaret when she was ten. Under such pressures, Fuller suffered periodically throughout her life from depression and headaches. Timothy Fuller was often away, serving four terms in Congress (1817–1825). Margaret’s mother, a devout Unitarian, was subdued by sickly health. In Fuller’s fictional ...

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Funk, Isaac Kauffman (10 September 1839–04 April 1912), publisher and reformer, was born near Clifton, Ohio, the son of John Funk and Martha Kauffman, farmers. Funk graduated from Wittenberg College in 1860 and from its theological seminary the following year. He subsequently held pastorates at Lutheran churches near Moreshill, Indiana, and in Carey, Ohio, before moving to St. Matthews’ English Lutheran Church in Brooklyn, New York, where he remained the longest. In 1863 he married Eliza Thompson; they had two children. The year after his wife’s death in 1868 he married her sister, Helen G. Thompson. The couple had one son....

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Hamilton, Thomas (26 April 1823–29 May 1865), journalist and antislavery activist, was born in New York City, the son of William Hamilton, a carpenter and community leader who participated in the rising abolitionist and black convention movements of the early 1830s. His mother’s name and occupation are not known. Although young Thomas gained a rudimentary education in the city’s African Free Schools and African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, the primary influence on his career choice seems to have been growing up in the Hamilton household, where he was introduced to abolitionism and the reform press at an early age. A few months after his father’s death in 1836, he went to work as a carrier for the ...

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Harman, Moses (12 October 1830–30 January 1910), free-thought and free-love journalist, was born in Pendleton County, Virginia (now West Va.), the son of Job Harman, a hardscrabble farmer and marginal land speculator, and Nancy (maiden name unknown). In pursuit of the main chance, the family relocated four times during Harman’s first ten years, and consequently his formal schooling was limited to a scant few months. Through sheer perseverance, he taught himself to read and by his sixteenth year had so mastered the rudiments that he was able to hire himself out as a teacher. At age eighteen, with the assistance of his family, and with money earned by tutoring his classmates, he entered Arcadia College in Iron County, Missouri, graduating in 1851. Just before the Civil War, he spent one semester of study at the St. Louis Normal School....

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Hasbrouck, Lydia Sayer (20 December 1827–24 August 1910), dress reformer and editor, was born in Warwick, New York, the daughter of Benjamin Sayer, a farmer and distiller, and Rebecca Forshee, a farmer. Lydia grew up in comfortable surroundings as the farm prospered and the family grew in social prominence. The spirited and daring Lydia developed into a skilled horsewoman who had a penchant for reading. Her desire for a superior education led her to leave the Warwick district school and enter Miss Galatian’s Select School. She then attended high school and Central College in Elmira, New York....

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Hecht, George Joseph (01 November 1895–23 April 1980), publisher and philanthropist, was born in New York City, the son of Meyer Hecht and Gella Stern. He attended the Ethical Culture School from 1902 until he graduated in 1913, when he entered Cornell University. Hecht’s early schooling along with his parents’ interest in social welfare helped him develop his lifelong interest in helping others. It was at Cornell that he discovered his talent for publishing. He helped change the ...

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Kellogg, Paul Underwood (30 September 1879–01 November 1958), editor and reformer, was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan, the son of Frank Israel Kellogg, a businessman, and Mary Foster Underwood. After graduating from high school in 1897, Kellogg worked for the Kalamazoo Daily Telegraph, where he acquired a taste for reporting and learned diverse journalistic skills. In 1901 he entered Columbia University. The following year, while attending the Summer School of Philanthropy, sponsored by the New York Charity Organization Society (COS), his talents were spotted by ...

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La Follette, Suzanne (1893–23 April 1983), feminist, writer, and editor, was born Clara La Follette on her family’s 1,000-acre ranch near Pullman, Washington, the daughter of William LeRoy La Follette, a rancher, and Mary Tabor. La Follette “grew up on horseback,” roaming the unfenced ranges of the Snake River Canyon, an unspoiled area where Jeffersonian lifestyles and values still held sway. A product of this environment, from an early age she placed great value on individual liberty and feared the intrusive power of the state....