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Asbury, Herbert (1891-1963), journalist and popular historian  

A. J. Kaul

Asbury, Herbert (01 September 1891–24 February 1963), journalist and popular historian, was born in Farmington, Missouri, the son of Samuel Lester Asbury, a surveyor and city clerk, and Ellen N. Prichard. His grandfather and great-grandfather were Methodist ministers. Asbury claimed that his great-great uncle was ...


Braden, Carl James (1914-1975), journalist and social justice activist  

Cynthia R. Poe

Braden, Carl James (1914–18 February 1975), journalist and social justice activist, was born in New Albany, Indiana, the son of James Braden, a railroadman and auto worker, and Elizabeth Braden. He attended Catholic schools in Louisville and was for two years a proseminary student at Mount Saint Francis College in Indiana. In 1930, at the age of sixteen, he left Mount Saint Francis for a job as a reporter for the ...


Bruce, John Edward (1856-1924), journalist and historian  

David A. Canton

Bruce, John Edward (22 February 1856–07 August 1924), journalist and historian, was born in Piscataway, Maryland, the son of Martha Allen Clark and Robert Bruce, who were both enslaved Africans. In 1859 Major Harvey Griffin, Robert Bruce’s slaveholder, sold him to a Georgia slaveholder. Raised by his mother, Bruce lived in Maryland until 1861 when Union troops marching through Maryland freed him and his mother, taking them to Washington, D.C., where Bruce lived until 1892. In 1865 Bruce’s mother worked as a domestic in Stratford, Connecticut, where Bruce received his early education in an integrated school. One year later they returned to Washington, where Bruce continued his education. Although he did not complete high school, he enrolled in a course at Howard University in 1872. Bruce married Lucy Pinkwood, an opera singer from Washington, D.C. They had no children. In 1895 Bruce married Florence Adelaide Bishop, with whom he had one child....


Burnham, Louis Everett (1915-1960), journalist, activist, and radical  

Erik S. McDuffie

Burnham, Louis Everett (29 September 1915–12 February 1960), journalist, activist, and radical, was born in Harlem, New York, the son of Charles Breechford Burnham, a building superintendent, and Louise St. Clair Williams Burnham, a hairdresser. His parents had emigrated from Barbados to the United States in search of a better livelihood, and they bought their own property in Harlem and began providing rooms for new Caribbean immigrants. Burnham attended New York City public schools and graduated from Townsend High School in 1932. In the fall of 1932 he enrolled in City College. He became actively involved in student political activities, serving as president of the Frederick Douglass Society and vice president of the student council. Affable, charismatic, and a powerful orator, he often spoke on campus about racial injustice, the threat of fascism to world peace, unemployment, and the plight of American youth. He graduated from City College in 1936....


DeVoto, Bernard Augustine (11 January 1897–13 November 1955), journalist and historian  

Mary Ellen Boyling

DeVoto, Bernard Augustine (11 January 1897–13 November 1955), journalist and historian, was born in Ogden, Utah, the son of Florian DeVoto, a teacher and freight agent, and Rhoda Dye. Educated well beyond the demands of the jobs he held, DeVoto’s father could provide only a meager income and a very modest home for his small family. As the offspring of religious dissenters (his father was a lapsed Roman Catholic; his mother, a nonpracticing Mormon), DeVoto blamed his family’s economic circumstances and religious nonconformity for alienating him from his birthplace. He grew up openly critical of the townspeoples’ provincial ways and censorious attitudes....


Durham, John Stephens (1861-1919), diplomat, lawyer, and journalist  

Thomas M. Leonard

Durham, John Stephens (18 July 1861–16 October 1919), diplomat, lawyer, and journalist, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Samuel Durham and Elizabeth Stephens. Two of his uncles, Clayton Durham and Jeremiah Durham, were noted clergymen who helped Bishop Richard Allen establish the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) church. A mulatto, Durham studied in the Philadelphia public schools, graduating from the Institute for Colored Youth in 1876....


Ford, Henry Jones (1851-1925), journalist and historian  

Michael T. Johnson

Ford, Henry Jones (25 August 1851–29 August 1925), journalist and historian, was born in Baltimore, Maryland, the son of Franklin Ford and Anne Elizabeth Jones. He graduated from Baltimore City College in 1868. Upon graduation he spent the next four years trying his hand at various trades, becoming in 1872 an editorial writer for the ...


Gunther, John (1901-1970), foreign correspondent and writer  

Morrell Heald

Gunther, John (30 August 1901–29 May 1970), foreign correspondent and writer, was born in Chicago, the son of Eugene M. Gunther, a salesman, and Lisette Shoeninger, a schoolteacher. His mother stimulated Gunther’s interest in literature and history; at eleven he already was compiling a personal encyclopedia of world affairs. The wide-ranging interests, energy, and enthusiasm displayed at this early age characterized his personal and professional life. At the University of Chicago, where he graduated in 1922, he became literary editor of the campus newspaper while building his personal library by reviewing books for other journals as well. Eager for a writer’s career, he headed for Europe to soak up continental culture without waiting to receive his bachelor’s degree....


Hale, Edward Everett (1822-1909), author, reformer, and Unitarian minister  

Francis J. Bosha

Hale, Edward Everett (03 April 1822–10 June 1909), author, reformer, and Unitarian minister, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Nathan Hale, a journalist, and Sarah Preston Everett. His father was a nephew of revolutionary war hero Captain Nathan Hale, and his maternal uncle and namesake was the orator and statesman ...


Cover Hale, Edward Everett (1822-1909)
Edward Everett Hale Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-99518).


Hamilton, Thomas (1823-1865), journalist and antislavery activist  

Roy E. Finkenbine

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 ...


Harman, Moses (1830-1910), free-thought and free-love journalist  

Louis J. Kern

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....


Hildreth, Richard (1807-1865), journalist, antislavery activist, philosopher, and historian  

Lynn Gordon Hughes

Hildreth, Richard (28 June 1807–11 July 1865), journalist, antislavery activist, philosopher, and historian, was born in Deerfield, Massachusetts, the son of Hosea Hildreth, a Congregational (later Unitarian) minister and educator, and Sarah McLeod Hildreth. He attended Phillips Exeter Academy, where his father was professor of mathematics and natural philosophy. After graduating from Harvard in 1826, he spent a year teaching school in Concord, Massachusetts. This experience inspired his earliest historical writing, ...


Holbrook, Stewart Hall (1893-1964), journalist and historian  

Todd Forsyth Carney

Holbrook, Stewart Hall (22 August 1893–03 September 1964), journalist and historian, was born in Newport, Vermont, the son of Jessie Holbrook, an itinerant businessman, and Kate Stewart. As a result of his father’s frequent relocations, Stewart’s childhood education was incomplete. He attended Colebrook Academy in New Hampshire but left without graduating when his family moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba, in 1911. Shortly thereafter, his father died, leaving Holbrook to find his own means of support. Pursuing latent interests in writing, he worked as a reporter for the Winnipeg ...


Johnson, Oliver (1809-1889), reformer and journalist  

John R. McKivigan

Johnson, Oliver (27 December 1809–10 December 1889), reformer and journalist, was born in Peacham, Vermont, the son of Ziba Johnson and Sally Lincoln, farmers. After an elementary school education, Johnson apprenticed as a printer in the office of the Montpelier Vermont Watchman, edited by Ezekiel P. Walton....


LaFarge, John (1880-1963), clergyman, journalist, and civil rights advocate  

David W. Southern

LaFarge, John (13 February 1880–24 November 1963), clergyman, journalist, and civil rights advocate, was born in Newport, Rhode Island, the youngest child of John La Farge, a painter and art critic, and Margaret Mason Perry, a granddaughter of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry. Growing up in this distinguished Catholic family, LaFarge was exposed to such famous people as ...


Lerner, Max (1902-1992), scholar, teacher, and newspaper columnist  

George W. Bain

Lerner, Max (20 December 1902–05 June 1992), scholar, teacher, and newspaper columnist, was born Maxwell Alan Lerner near Minsk, Russia, the son of Benjamin Lerner, an itinerant scholar, and Bessie Podel. His father emigrated to the United States the next year, and Max followed with his mother and siblings in 1907. After brief jobs in New York and New Jersey, his father moved to New Haven, Connecticut, in 1913 and entered the dairying business....


Levin, Louis Hiram (1866-1923), social worker and journalist  

Vincenza Scarpaci

Levin, Louis Hiram (13 January 1866–21 April 1923), social worker and journalist, was born in Charleston, South Carolina, the son of Harris Levin, a merchant, and Dora Levine, daughter of a rabbi. The Levin family moved to Maryland in 1871 and settled in Baltimore by 1876. Levin graduated in 1881 from Bryant and Stratton College. He later attended Baltimore University School of Law and graduated in 1896....


Lloyd, Henry Demarest (1847-1903), journalist and social reformer  

E. Jay Jernigan

Lloyd, Henry Demarest (01 May 1847–28 September 1903), journalist and social reformer, was born in New York City, the son of Aaron Lloyd, a pastor of the Dutch Reformed church, and Marie Christie Demarest. Lloyd grew up in impoverished rural parishes in New York, New Jersey, and Illinois. But in 1860 his father gave up the ministry and returned to New York City to move in with his father-in-law, a customs house official, and run a small book shop. A scholarship student at Columbia College, Lloyd graduated with a B.A. in 1867 and entered Columbia Law School. In 1869, after passing the New York bar exam, he became assistant secretary to the New York-based American Free-Trade League and for three years served as its public relations agent....


Cover Lloyd, Henry Demarest (1847-1903)

Lloyd, Henry Demarest (1847-1903)  


Henry Demarest Lloyd. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-103845).