Edward William Bok > The Americanization of Edward Bok > Page 66



Edward William Bok (1863–1930). The Americanization of Edward Bok. 1921.

Page 66

religious, he determined that its literary contents should be of a high order and equal in interest to the sermons. But this called for additional capital, and the capital furnished was not for that purpose.

It is here that Edward’s autographic acquaintances stood him in good stead. He went in turn to each noted person he had met, explained his plight and stated his ambitions, with the result that very soon the magazine and the public were surprised at the distinction of the contributors to The Brooklyn Magazine. Each number contained a noteworthy list of them, and when an article by the President of the United States, then Rutherford B. Hayes, opened one of the numbers, the public was astonished, since up to that time the unwritten rule that a President’s writings were confined to official pronouncements had scarcely been broken. William Dean Howells, General Grant, General Sherman, Phillips Brooks, General Sheridan, Canon Farrar, Cardinal Gibbons, Marion Harland, Margaret Sangster—the most prominent men and women of the day, some of whom had never written for magazines—began to appear in the young editor’s contents. Editors wondered how the publishers could afford it, whereas, in fact, not a single name represented an honorarium. Each contributor had come gratuitously to the aid of the editor.

At first, the circulation of the magazine permitted the boys to wrap the copies themselves; and then they, with two other boys, would carry as huge bundles as they could lift, put them late at night on the front platform of the street-cars, and take them to the postoffice. Thus the boys absolutely knew the growth of


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