23 May, 2019

Walter Knight-Adkin


The Very Reverend Walter Kenrick Knight-Adkin was an eminent Anglican priest.

Born in Cheltenham, Knight-Adkin was educated at Cheltenham College and St Edmund Hall, Oxford. He did his pastoral training at Wells Theological College. Ordained in June 1908 at St Paul's Cathedral in London, he was a Curate at Kentish Town before commencing a long period of service as a Chaplain with the Royal Navy rising to become Chaplain of the Fleet from 1929 to 1933, after which he was Dean of Gibraltar. Evacuated to England in 1941 due to illness, he became civilian Vicar of Sparkwell then Chaplain to the Lord Mayor of Bristol at St Mark`s Church, College Green.

He was awarded the OBE in 1919 and appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath in 1932. On January 25, 1929 he was appointed as Honorary Chaplain to HM King George V. He was an Honorary Canon of Portsmouth Cathedral and was appointed Deputy Lieutenant of Gloucester and of Bristol on 3 June 1950.

Knight-Adkin was the second son of the Rev Harry Kenrick Knight-Adkin (1851–1928) and Georgina Elizabeth Knight (1849–1930). He was born in Cheltenham on August 17, 1880.

He married Elizabeth Cuff Napier (1891–1984) at St. Andrew's-by-the-Green, Glasgow on December  20, 1915. His bride was the daughter of Colonel Alexander Napier RAMC. They had one child, Peter Napier Knight-Adkin, who died at Portsmouth in 1918.

Walter died at his home on May 24, 1957.

10 May, 2019

Joachim Fuchsberger


Joachim "Blacky" Fuchsberger was a German actor and television host, best known to a wide German-speaking audience as one of the recurring actors in various Edgar Wallace movies. In the English-speaking world, he was sometimes credited as Akim Berg or Berger.

Fuchsberger was born in Zuffenhausen, today a district of Stuttgart, and was a member of the obligatory Hitler Youth. During World War II, at the age of 16, he was trained as a Fallschirmjäger, combat instructor and sent to the Eastern Front where he was wounded. He was captured in a hospital in Stralsund by the Red Army and came into Soviet captivity and later in American and British captivity. Because of this turbulent time of his youth on the Eastern front, he could never make a school diploma. In 1946, he worked as a coal miner for the British in Recklinghausen. His nickname Blacky hails from that time.

After his release, he worked as an engineer for typesetting and printing machines in the family business and later in a publishing house in Düsseldorf. In 1949, he was advertising manager of the German Building Exhibition in Nuremberg. From 1950 to 1952, he was spokesman at the radio station in Munich and newsreel spokesman. In 1951, he married the pop singer Gitta Lind, from whom he divorced after two years. In 1954 he married the radio technician and actress Gundula Korte (born 24 March 1930), with whom he has a son. In the same year he had his breakthrough playing "Gunner Asch" in the three-part war film 08/15 film series, based on the novel by Hans Hellmut Kirst.

After several war films, he starred in the 1959 film Der Frosch mit der Maske (The Frog with the Mask) playing amateur detective Richard Gordon. More than 3.2 million visitors saw the movie in the cinema. The surprising success laid the foundation for many other film adaptations of novels by Edgar Wallace.

After this success, he played the detective in another 12 Edgar Wallace films: 1960 – Chief Inspector Long in Die Bande des Schreckens (The Gang of Horror); 1961 – Inspector Larry Holt in The Dead Eyes of London; 1961 – Insurance Agent Jack Tarling in The Devil's Daffodil; 1961 – Inspector Mike Dorn in The Strange Countess; 1962 – Inspector Wade in The Inn on the River; 1963 – Clifford Lynne in Der Fluch der gelben Schlange [de] (The Curse of the Yellow Snake); 1963 – Estate manager Dick Alford in The Black Abbot; 1964 – Investigator Johnny Gray in Zimmer 13 [de] (Room 13); 1964 – Inspector Higgins in Der Hexer (The Warlock); 1967 – Inspector Higgins in Der Mönch mit der Peitsche [de] (The Monk with the Whip); 1968 – Inspector Higgins in Im Banne des Unheimlichen (Under the Spell of the Sinister); 1972 – Inspector Barth in What Have You Done to Solange?.

Fuchsberger was the stadium announcer for the opening and closing ceremonies of the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich. During the closing ceremony, it was suspected that a hijacked passenger aircraft was on its way to the stadium. Fuchsberger, fearing a panic, decided against evacuation. This decision was vindicated when the original suspicion turned out to have been false.

In the late 1960s, Fuchsberger co-founded a real estate company that went bankrupt in a short time. At 42, he had lost his entire fortune, had to sell his villa and sat on a mountain of debt. With the help of his wife, Gundula, good friends and tireless work, he managed to discharge the debt and to start a new existence.

In 1978, he was bitten by a chimpanzee during a TV show and fell seriously ill with hepatitis B. He spent 4 months at the quarantine station and suffered through a depression but recovered. He withdrew from film and television work in the late 1970s and concentrated on his stage career.

Fuchsberger lived in Grünwald near Munich and in Sandy Bay, Hobart, Tasmania. He held Australian citizenship together with his German one. He died of organ failure at his German home in Grünwald on 11 September 2014.

02 May, 2019

Edward Hulburt


Edward Olson Hulburt was an American geophysicist . He is considered the discoverer of the electrical properties of the ionosphere and the interaction between the sun and the earth's atmosphere. Besides, he was the first to realize that the blue color of the sky during the blue hour has a different cause than that during the day.

In 1931 he developed a study on the greenhouse effect in the Earth's atmosphere.

Felix Bloch



Felix Bloch was a Swiss-American physicist and Nobel physics laureate who worked mainly in the U.S. He and Edward Mills Purcell were awarded the 1952 Nobel Prize for Physics for "their development of new ways and methods for nuclear magnetic precision measurements." In 1954–1955, he served for one year as the first Director-General of CERN. Felix Bloch made fundamental theoretical contributions to the understanding of electron behavior in crystal lattices, ferromagnetism, and nuclear magnetic resonance.

Bloch was born in Zürich, Switzerland to Jewish parents Gustav and Agnes Bloch. He was educated at the Cantonal Gymnasium in Zürich and at the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETHZ), also in Zürich. Initially studying engineering he soon changed to physics. During this time he attended lectures and seminars given by Peter Debye and Hermann Weyl at ETH Zürich and Erwin Schrödinger at the neighboring University of Zürich. A fellow student in these seminars was John von Neumann. Bloch graduated in 1927, and was encouraged by Debye to go to Leipzig to study with Werner Heisenberg. Bloch became Heisenberg's first graduate student, and gained his doctorate in 1928. His doctoral thesis established the quantum theory of solids, using Bloch waves to describe electrons in periodic lattices.

He remained in European academia, working on superconductivity with Wolfgang Pauli in Zürich; with Hans Kramers and Adriaan Fokker in Holland; with Heisenberg on ferromagnetism, where he developed a description of boundaries between magnetic domains, now known as "Bloch walls"; with Niels Bohr in Copenhagen, where he worked on a theoretical description of the stopping of charged particles traveling through matter; and with Enrico Fermi in Rome. In 1932, Bloch returned to Leipzig to assume a position as "Privatdozent" (lecturer). In 1933, immediately after Hitler came to power, he left Germany because he was Jewish, returning to Zürich, before traveling to Paris to lecture at the Institut Henri Poincaré.

In 1934, the chairman of Stanford Physics invited Bloch to join the faculty. Bloch accepted the offer and emigrated to the United States. In the fall of 1938, Bloch began working with the 37 inch cyclotron at the University of California at Berkeley to determine the magnetic moment of the neutron. Bloch went on to become the first professor for theoretical physics at Stanford. In 1939, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States.

During WWII, Bloch briefly worked on the atomic bomb project at Los Alamos. Disliking the military atmosphere of the laboratory and uninterested in the theoretical work there, Bloch left to join the radar project at Harvard University.

After the war, he concentrated on investigations into nuclear induction and nuclear magnetic resonance, which are the underlying principles of MRI. In 1946 he proposed the Bloch equations which determine the time evolution of nuclear magnetization. Along with Edward Purcell, Bloch was awarded the 1952 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on nuclear magnetic induction.

When CERN was being set up in the early 1950s, its founders were searching for someone of the stature and international prestige to head the fledgling international laboratory, and in 1954 Professor Bloch became CERN's first Director-General, at the time when construction was getting under way on the present Meyrin site and plans for the first machines were being drawn up. After leaving CERN, he returned to Stanford University, where he in 1961 was made Max Stein Professor of Physics.

At Stanford, he was the advisor of Carson D. Jeffries, who became a professor of Physics at the University of California, Berkeley.

In 1964, he was elected a foreign member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Bloch died in Zürich in 1983.

Elmer Imes



Elmer Samuel Imes was the second African American to earn a Ph.D. in Physics and the first in the 20th century. He was among the first African-American scientists to make important contributions to modern physics. While working in industry, he gained four patents for instruments to be used for measuring magnetic and electric properties. As an academic, he chaired and developed the department of physics at Fisk University, serving from 1930 to 1941.


Elmer S. Imes was born in 1883 in Memphis, Tennessee to Elizabeth (Wallace) and Benjamin A. Imes, both of whom were college educated and had met at Oberlin College in Ohio. They married there in 1880. Benjamin earned a divinity degree at Oberlin Theological Seminary in 1880. His father was descended from free people of color who had been established in south-central Pennsylvania by the time of the Revolution. His mother was born into slavery; her family had moved to Oberlin after the American Civil War when she was a child. Imes had two younger brothers: Albert Lovejoy Imes and William Lloyd Imes. The latter became a minister and was later pastor of St. James Presbyterian Church in New York City; he held degrees from Fisk, Union Theological Seminary, and Columbia University.

Imes and his brothers attended grammar school in Oberlin, Ohio. Their parents became missionaries with the American Missionary Association and moved to the South to serve freedmen and their children. Imes completed his high school education at the Agricultural and Mechanical High School in Normal, Alabama. He graduated in 1903 from Fisk University, a historically black college, with a bachelor's degree in science.

Upon graduating from Fisk, Imes taught mathematics and physics at Georgia Normal and Agricultural Institute; now Albany State University, a historically black college in Albany, Georgia, and the Emerson Institute, which had been founded in Mobile, Alabama by the American Missionary Association. Imes returned to Fisk in 1913 as an instructor of science and mathematics. During his tenure there, Imes also earned a master's degree in science from Fisk University.

He went to the University of Michigan for additional study in physics, earning a Ph.D. in Physics in 1918. He studied under Harrison McAllister Randall. Imes became the second African American to receive a Ph.D. in physics since Edward Bouchet did so from Yale University in 1876; Imes was the first African American in the 20th century to gain this degree.

Around 1919, after moving to New York to work in industry, Imes married Nella Larsen, a nurse who became a writer. She is considered part of the Harlem Renaissance, having published short stories and two novels in the late 1920s. The couple had moved from Jersey City, New Jersey, to Harlem, where they became part of the professional and cultural society that included artists and intellectuals such as Langston Hughes and W.E.B. Du Bois, members of the black elite. Due to strains in their marriage, they divorced in 1933, after Imes had returned to Fisk University in 1929 for an academic career.

Imes’ research and doctoral thesis led to his publication of Measurements on the Near-Infrared Absorption of Some Diatomic Gases in November 1919 in the Astrophysical Journal.[4] This work was followed by a paper co-authored and presented in November 1919 jointly with Harrison M. Randall, "The Fine Structure of the Near Infra-Red Absorption Bands of HCI, HBr, and HF" at the American Physical Society; it was published in the Physical Review in February 1920. This work demonstrated for the first time that Quantum Theory could be applied to radiation in all regions of the electromagnetic spectrum, to the rotational energy states of molecules, as well as the vibration and electronic levels. Imes' work provided an early verification of Quantum Theory. It became known in Europe as well as in the United States.

Imes' work was one of the earliest applications of high resolution infrared spectroscopy and provided the first detailed spectra of molecules. This led to development of the field of study of molecular structure through infrared spectroscopy.

In the early 1920s, Imes found difficulty in securing employment in academia. Not many black colleges had physics programs and white colleges did not hire him. As a result, he became a physics consultant and researcher after completing his doctorate; he worked in physics at the Federal Engineers Development Corporation in 1918 and with the Burrows Magnetic Equipment Corporation in 1922. In 1927, Imes went to work as a research engineer at E.A. Everett Signal Supplies. During the decade that Imes worked in the scientific and materials industry, his research resulted in four patents for instruments that were used for measuring magnetic and electric properties.

In 1930, Imes returned to Fisk University, where he served as Chair of the Physics Department. Imes is credited with the academic development of the physics programs at Fisk. Many of his students went on to obtain doctoral degrees from highly ranked schools such as the University of Michigan. While at Fisk, Imes developed a course in Cultural Physics, to teach students about the history of science. In 1931, Imes was named one of the thirteen most gifted Black Americans.

In 1939, Imes returned to New York, where he conducted research as a scholar in magnetic materials at the Physics Department at New York University. He died in 1941.

Pyotr Kapitsa



Pyotr Kapitsa was a leading Soviet physicist and Nobel laureate, best known for his work in low-temperature physics.


13 December, 2018

Bengt Berg



Bengt Magnus Kristoffer Berg was a Swedish ornithologist, zoologist, wildlife photographer, and writer.

Bengt Berg was one of the world’s first nature filmographers. He was one of the very first nature photographers and filmographers and one of the very top in the world of his time. He started photographing at around 1910. At the Victoria theatre in Berlin, the biggest "cinematograph theatre" at the time, he would explain to the audience from a speaker’s chair during his soundless films. During one consecutive period of four months there was full house (2600 people each show) twice a day every day. He was also the author of almost 30 books translated into 16 languages. His books were full of wildlife photographs and questioning, humorous stories from Sweden, Africa, India, Bhutan and the Himalayas. He was a vivid debater of various subjects to do with birds, flora, fauna in general. More than often his booming voice or pen would declare that man was taking far too greedy or indeed urban view and place in nature. Bengt Berg was many things beside a photographer and a writer. He was also a hunter and a believer in a natural life as a being amongst other animals. But first and foremost, his love was birds and in his writing, he was never far from words declaring his passion for the winged creatures surrounding us all: Thanks to him the sea eagle, the graylag goose, the golden eagle and the mute swan of Sweden were saved. He was the first to film the shoebill stork in South Sudan (early 1920s) Also in the 20s he followed the common cranes from Europe to find out the southernmost point they went to in Africa. 1930 He photographed the bearded vulture in the Himalayas, from a balloon basket fastened to a very long rope. Here he (and sometimes his wife) hung precariously and at great heights to get clear pictures of the birds, inside their caves on the cliff walls. But it was not only birds: At home in Sweden he was deeply involved in fencing private land to protect and understand more about the red deer, and his travels across the globe also turned him towards filming, photographing and writing of mammals like the elephants of Africa, the tigers and rhinoceros of India. When he came home from his filming of the shoebill stork in South Sudan he also had in his trunks the longest piece of film so far taken of the African elephant, and through his book of the Indian rhino in 1932 he brought the world to attention that the Chinese were killing them off at great speed in their demand for rhino horn. Dr. Bengt Berg looked with a very sober, albeit furious, gaze at man’s one moment thoughtlessness in nature and next moment unrealistic approach to be a human animal amongst other animals. Some thought him too loudly critical of man and claimed that he loved other kinds more than his own. "Do not judge me on my person but on the work, I have done here" were words he wrote not long before he died. 31 July 1967, 82 years old, he died from a stroke while swimming in the archipelago at his estate at Rosberg, Blekinge, Sweden.

He is best remembered for his many travel books, his naturalist photographs and movies, taken on several expeditions around the world, including Europe, Africa and Asia.

11 December, 2018

Michael Ende


Michael Andreas Helmuth Ende was a German writer of fantasy and children's fiction. He is best known for his epic fantasy The Neverending Story; other famous works include Momo and Jim Button and Luke the Engine Driver. His works have been translated into more than 40 languages, sold more than 35 million copies, and adapted as motion pictures, stage plays, operas and audio books. Ende is one of the most popular and famous German authors of the 20th century, mostly due to the enormous success of his children's fiction.

10 December, 2018

Sydney Chaplin



Sydney John Chaplin was an English actor. He was the elder half-brother of Sir Charlie Chaplin and served as his business manager.


Chaplin was born to 19-year-old Hannah Hill in London. Hannah claimed Sydney's father was a man named Sydney Hawkes, but his father's identity was never verified. The Chaplin surname was adopted following his mother's marriage to Charles Chaplin, Sr., a year after his birth.

While Syd and brother Charlie were in the Cuckoo Schools in Hanwell following his mother's mental collapse, Syd was placed in the program designed to train young boys to become seamen, on the Exmouth training ship docked at Grays, Essex. He followed this training period with several years working on ships, receiving high marks from all of his employers. But his ambition was to get into the entertainment business and he left his final voyage with that in mind.

In 1905 Charlie and Sydney worked briefly together in one of their first stage appearances, Sherlock Holmes. Syd was briefly cast as a villain in that play. In 1906 however, he landed a contract with Fred Karno, of Karno's London Comedians and was to fight hard to bring Charlie into the company two years later. Charlie never achieved the sort of fame Syd did as a principal comedian for that company, but that was to be the only time that Syd was able to outdo his brother—at least in front of an audience.

After Charlie achieved worldwide fame in the 1910s, the brothers discovered they had another half-brother through their mother, Wheeler Dryden, who had been removed from his mother's care as an infant and brought up abroad by his father. Wheeler was also an actor, and the brothers reunited in Hollywood in 1918, occasionally working together at Chaplin's studio through to the 1950s.


As Charlie was negotiating his Keystone contract, he suggested Sydney be asked to join the company, and Syd and his wife Minnie Chaplin arrived in California in October 1914. Syd made a few comedies there, including the "Gussle" comedies, and the comedy short A Submarine Pirate in 1915, which, second to Tillie's Punctured Romance, was the most financially successful comedy Keystone ever made.

Following this success, Sydney decided to leave the screen to negotiate Charlie a better contract. After getting him a $500,000 contract with Mutual on 27 February 1916, he got him his first million dollar ($1.25 million) contract on 17 June 1917 with First National. Soon he was handling the majority of Charlie's business affairs, including a failed sheet music business and a successful merchandising one, in addition to further contract negotiation. He also appeared in a few films during the First National era, such as Pay Day and The Pilgrim. Sydney achieved his own million-dollar contract from Famous Players-Lasky in 1919, but a series of problems resulted in only one failed film, King, Queen, Joker (1921), disappearing from the screen once again.

Later films include The Perfect Flapper (1924) with Colleen Moore, A Christie Comedy, Charley's Aunt (1925) and five features for Warner Bros. Pictures, including The Man on the Box (1925), Oh, What a Nurse! (1926), The Missing Link (1927), The Fortune Hunter (1927), and The Better 'Ole (1926). The last is perhaps his best-known film today because of his characterization of cartoonist Bruce Bairnsfather's famous World War I character, Old Bill, and the fact that it was the second Warner Bros. film to have a Vitaphone soundtrack. It is also believed by many to have the first spoken word of dialogue, "coffee", although there are those who disagree.

Sydney's first film for British International Pictures (BIP), A Little Bit of Fluff (1928), proved to be his final film. In 1929, just as he was to begin work on a second film for the studio, Mumming Birds, he was accused of biting off the nipple of actress Molly Wright in a sexual assault. BIP settled out of court, conceding the truth of Wright's claims. Following the scandal, he left England, leaving a string of unpaid tax demands and by 1930 he was declared bankrupt.

In addition to his importance in launching and promoting brother Charlie's career over the years, perhaps Chaplin's most important contribution to history is in the field of aviation. In May 1919, he, along with pilot Emery Rogers, formulated the first privately owned domestic American airline, the Syd Chaplin Airline Company, based in Santa Monica, California. Even though the corporation lasted only a year, in that time it accumulated many "firsts." Syd and partners had the first ever aeroplane showroom for their Curtiss aeroplanes. Emery Rogers conducted the first roundtrip Los Angeles to San Francisco flight in one 24-hour period. Charlie Chaplin took his first-ever aeroplane flight in one of Syd's planes, as did many other notable personages of the period. Chaplin got out of the aviation business right after legislation began to pass regarding pilot licensing and the taxation of planes and flights.

Chaplin married twice and had no children. His first wife, Minnie, died in France in September 1936 following surgery for breast cancer. After World War II, Sydney lived most of his final years in Europe. His second wife, Henriette (called Gypsy) survived him. After a long illness, he died one month after his 80th birthday, on 16 April 1965, in Nice, France. Chaplin is buried beside his wife Gypsy in Clarens-Montreux Cemetery, near Vevey.

Bill Bowes



William Eric Bowes was an English professional cricketer active from 1929 to 1947 who played in 372 first-class matches as a right arm fast bowler and a right-handed tail end batsman. He took 1,639 wickets with a best performance of nine for 121 and completed ten wickets in a match 27 times. He scored 1,531 runs with a highest score of 43* and is one of very few major players whose career total of wickets taken exceeded his career total of runs scored. He did not rate himself as a fielder but he nevertheless held 138 catches.

Bowes played for Yorkshire and Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC). He was a member of the ground staff at MCC for ten seasons and they had priority of selection, which meant he played against Yorkshire for them and he did not play against MCC until 1938. He made fifteen appearances for England in Test cricket and took part in the 1932–33 Bodyline series. He took 68 Test wickets at the creditable average of 22.33 with a best performance of six for 33. Bowes represented Yorkshire in thirteen County Championship seasons, his career being interrupted by the Second World War, and the team won the championship eight times in that period, largely due to their strong attack which was led by Hedley Verity and himself.

During the war, Bowes was commissioned in the British Army as a gunnery officer and served in North Africa until he was captured, along with over 30,000 other Allied troops, after the fall of Tobruk in June 1942. He spent three years in Italian and German prisoner-of-war camps and lost over four stone in weight. He continued playing for two seasons after the war but, weakened by his experiences, could only bowl at medium pace. After he retired from playing, he became a coach with Yorkshire and worked for The Yorkshire Post as a cricket writer. He was born in Elland, West Yorkshire, and died in Otley, West Yorkshire, aged 79.

07 December, 2018

Charles C. Ritz


Charles C. Ritz was a French hotelier and fly-fishing specialist.

Charles Ritz was born on August 1, 1891 and was the first of two sons born to Swiss hotelier César Ritz and Marie-Louise Beck, whose family also owned and ran a hotel in Menton. He did not know his itinerant father well, and César died when Charles was 27 years old.

Charles Ritz emigrated to the United States in 1916 where he became a soldier in the US Army. When World War I ended, Ritz returned to the US, and soon spent considerable time mastering the art of fly-fishing in the American West. He married Elisabeth Pierce.

Ritz returned to France in the 1930s. His experience with fly fishing made him one of the foremost specialists on the subject. Ernest Hemingway called him, "One of the finest fly fisherman I know." Ritz wrote a book, A Fly Fisher's Life, which has been read by anglers around the world. It has been regarded as one of the landmarks of fly fishing literature. He invented the parabolic fly-rod, a term coined by Everett Garrison, a famous bamboo fly rod maker. Fly rods of this type were commercially produced by Paul H. Young, Abu Garcia, Pezon et Michel, Jim Payne and Paul H. Young among others. He was a publicist for the High speed - high line style of fly casting (HSHL). He founded the "Fario Club,” which was the most select fishing club in the world during the latter part of the
twentieth century.

Charles Ritz spent several years assisting his mother to manage the Ritz Hotel, assumed presidency of the empire in 1953, when his mother Marie-Louise retires. Marie-Louise returns to her husband's village (Niederwald) during the summer's and sets up The Ritz Foundation specifically for Niederwald's youth. The Foundation pays for scholarships and apprenticeship programs, Marie-Louis later passes away in 1961. He attempted to introduce his progressive ideas when he opened le bar Vendôme and the l'Espadon restaurant but found himself hampered by the board of directors. His father died in 1918.

Ritz remarried in 1971 and retired from the hotel presidency in 1976, three months before his death.
He is buried in Père Lachaise Cemetery alongside his first wife.

Arnold Gingrich


Arnold W. Gingrich, co-founder, editor and publisher of Esquire Magazine.

Gingrich created Esquire in 1933 and remained its editor until 1945. He returned as publisher in 1952, serving in this role until his death in 1976. For several years he left the post of editor vacant while several young editors competed for it. The two most serious contenders were Harold Hayes and Clay Felker. Hayes won, and Felker went on to found New York magazine. During the Hayes-Gingrich era, Esquire played a leading role in launching the New Journalism, publishing writers like Tom Wolfe and fellow fraternity brother, Gay Talese.

Gingrich was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, of Mennonite parents in 1903. He attended the University of Michigan where he was a member of Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity, and was noted as a member of the class of 1925. Gingrich brought numerous skills and interests to bear in the formation of Esquire magazine, notably his skill in editing, identification of talent and in publishing. His partner, David Smart led the business side of the magazine with Henry Jackson responsible for the fashion section, making up a more substantial portion of the magazine in its first fifteen years. Over his four-decade career, Gingrich published such authors as Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, John Steinbeck, John Dos Passes, Garry Wills, Truman Capote, and Norman Mailer. He was also one of the few magazine editors to publish F. Scott Fitzgerald regularly in the late 1930s, including Fitzgerald's The Pat Hobby Stories. Gingrich also published stories by Jack Woodford, whom he befriended when they worked together at an advertising agency in the late 1920s. He wrote the introduction to Woodford's famous book on writing and publishing, Trial and Error.

The magazine’s name Esquire was inspired by a letter from Gingrich's friend Robert Klark Graham, facetiously addressing him as "Arnold Gingrich, Esquire." The magazine he created set the template for future men's magazines of the mid-century period; for example, Playboy, a variation, essentially Esquire with nude photographs (Esquire had famously published a series of "Varga Girl" paintings and other "cheesecake" imagery since its founding). Similar periodicals include GQ (originally Gentlemen's Quarterly), Field & Stream, Popular Mechanics and Popular Science. Further afield, even The Atlantic and other regional and national publications exhibit styling and content first evidenced in the pages of Esquire. Indeed, Esquire was one of the forerunners of this genre, blending aspects of traditional, if upper-crust masculine pastimes such as armchair discussions of Ivy League pedigree, East Coast fraternalism, and literary interest with "the sporting life," such as horses and angling, fashion, love of tobacco and whiskey, and admiration for the feminine. More recently Maxim has continued this tradition with a more edgy appeal to Gen-Xers and millennials.

His autobiography, Toys of A Lifetime, with illustrations by Leslie Saalburg, was published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1966. It has long been out of print. In it, Gingrich recounts his experience with cars (he owned several notable Bentleys), including a classic R-series and S-series "Countryman" (obtained through the late J.S. Inskip in Manhattan), as well as an early Volkswagen. Other interests include transatlantic liners (notably the Normandie), French hotels, Dunhill pipes and Balkan Sobranie tobacco, clothes and all manner of other possessions and accommodations.

Gingrich was an accomplished fly fisherman, writing several books on the subject and lifestyle of the gentleman angler.

Gingrich was also an accomplished violinist. He would arrive at his office hours early to practice before the staff arrived, participated in amateur chamber music ensembles, and owned several highly prized instruments. He published a musical memoir titled "A Thousand Mornings of Music: The Journal of an Obsession with the Violin."

He died in 1976 at his home in Ridgewood, New Jersey.

Frank Woolner


Frank Woolner was a well-known authority on fishing, hunting, natural history and conservation.

Born in Worcester, Massachusetts, Frank left high school in his junior year, worked as a cook and automobile spray painter, and was New England amateur bicycle racing champion (#13) for four years, retiring undefeated to join the World War II effort. From 1942 to 1944 Woolner was chief writer for the 3rd Armored “Spearhead” Division. He also was a tank commander on the front lines and a veteran of the Normandy Invasion on June 6, 1944. After the war Sgt. Woolner remained in Germany to co-write (with Major Murray H. Fowler) the Division’s narrative history, the military classic Spearhead in the West.

Frank hadn’t done any surf fishing prior to 1942, but while overseas he received letters describing the budding activity on Cape Cod beaches. When he had his chance in 1946, both the sport and the tackle were still in their early stages of development: rods were blank Calcutta sticks with wound-on guides which didn’t work for long, and the Cuttyhunk linen line soaked up water and showered anglers with every cast. But there were beach buggies, and Frank was immediately recognizable in his first of many Model A Fords, purchased for $25 and painted dazzle (grey, green, yellow, and purple) camouflage.

When Frank became the Worcester Telegram & Gazette’s Rod and Gun Editor, he used his daily column to introduce his home town to the sport – and to the striped bass. His readers became striper-savvy and striper-obsessed in a big way, driving their 40-mph buggies 80 miles to the Cape Cod Canal, then another 60 to Provincetown, where they navigated the beaches from midnight to dawn and tide to tide. By the 1950s the sport was booming. The Worcester Striper Club was formed, and Frank helped organize the Massachusetts Beach Buggy Association in 1949. Their code of ethics covered everything from keeping beaches clean to maintaining good relations with town authorities, and in their numbered buggies (Frank in his lucky #13), members had almost unlimited beach access until the mid-1960s.

In 1950 Hal Lyman, owner and publisher of Salt Water Sportsman, was called back into the Navy, and Frank took over the magazine’s reins. Under his tutelage, what had begun in 1939 as the four-page weekly “Voice of the Coastal Sport Fisherman” became the instrument that defined marine angling and marine conservation, as Frank explored new frontiers and kept ahead of the rapidly evolving world of techniques, tackle, conservation and management. By the late 1960s the magazine’s editorials and slogans (“Limit your catch, don’t catch your limit”) began to reflect the thinking of the day, and fewer photos of excessive catches were featured. Frank, who had appeared in similar shots years before, now had a favorite phrase to describe them: “Dead fish, dumb fisherman.”

As one of the biggest names in saltwater angling, Woolner’s influence not only shaped Salt Water Sportsman but also fostered the careers of the sport’s most promising writers. He held others to the same high standard to which he held himself, and went out of his way to reassure those in whom he saw potential, often sending a letter of encouragement instead of a stark rejection slip.

Woolner was a masterful writer. He co-authored books on striped bass, weakfish, bottom fishing, saltwater tackle and techniques; authored six other titles; received numerous awards for excellence in craft; and remained on the Salt Water Sportsman masthead until his death in 1994. 

Roderick Haig-Brown


Roderick Langmere Haig-Brown was a Canadian writer and conservationist.

Haig-Brown was born in Lancing, Sussex, England. His father, Alan Haig-Brown, was a teacher and a prolific writer, the author of hundreds of articles and poems on sports, the military, and educational issues in various periodicals. Alan was also an officer in the British Army during World War I. In 1918 he was killed in action in France.

Roderick's mother, Violet Mary Pope, was one of fifteen children of Alfred Pope, a wealthy Dorset brewer. After the war ended Roderick, his mother and his two sisters went to live with her family. His grandfather Pope was an industrious man with very strong Victorian values of “service, fair play, decency and acceptance of the obligations that follow with the privilege of class and education.”

His grandfather was a friend of Thomas Hardy and took young Roderick to tea there on at least one occasion. Roderick later noted in his essay “Hardy’s Dorset” that he regretted not having elicited more information from Hardy about being a writer, but he was sixteen then and was passionate about fishing and shooting. Life on his grandfather's country estate on the Frome River was fascinating to him. His many uncles loved sport and taught him to fish and shoot, but it was a family friend, Major Greenhill, who served as Roderick’s sporting mentor and taught him both the skills and the ethics of sportsmanship. The estate's gamekeepers introduced him to the importance of conservation and the complexity of the environment. In 1921 Roderick entered Charterhouse where his grandfather Haig-Brown had been headmaster.

His physical and social childhood environment contributed, according to biographer Anthony Robertson, to Roderick’s code of conduct. Throughout his life he adhered to an ideal balanced between reason and passion, an ideal infused with knowledge and tempered by responsibility, decency and fair play. This code “invoked a mental and physical discipline that went beyond making a successful catch or kill; its central virtue was knowledge, intimate and thorough, transcending pursuit.”

Haig-Brown found his way to British Columbia, Canada through a series of unexpected events. After he was expelled from Charterhouse School, he joined his father’s regiment for a short while, but found that army life was too restrictive. The family decided that the British Colonial Civil Service might be a more agreeable alternative, but he was too young to write the exams. He went, in the meantime to Seattle, Washington at the invitation of an uncle who had married a Seattle woman, promising his mother he would come back when he was eligible for the civil service. He worked at a logging camp in Washington, then crossed the border to Canada because his U.S. visa had expired. He remained in British Columbia for three years to work at Nimpkish Lake on Vancouver Island as a logger, a commercial fisherman and an occasional guide to visiting anglers. He returned to England in 1931 and enjoyed the fast-paced life of London. But images of British Columbia haunted him while he wrote his first book, Silver: The Life of an Atlantic Salmon (1931) as well as part of Pool and Rapid (1932). He returned to BC at the end of the year and planned his third book, Panther (1934).

He married Ann Elmore of Seattle after publishing Panther, and the couple settled on the banks of the Campbell River where they lived for the rest of their lives, raising three daughters and a son.

From the year of his return to British Columbia to 1976, the year of his death, Roderick Haig-Brown published twenty-three books (five more were published posthumously), wrote numerous articles and essays, and created several series of talks and historical dramas for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. He is most famous internationally for his writing on fly fishing and the natural world.

He joined the Canadian Army as a personnel officer in 1943 and was later seconded for several months to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police which allowed him to travel across Canada and to the Arctic. He was magistrate for the town of Campbell River from 1941 until 1974. He became a trustee of the Nature Conservancy of Canada, an advisor to the BC Wildlife Federation, a senior advisor to Trout Unlimited and the Federation of Flyfishers, and a member of the Federal Fisheries Development Council and the International Pacific Salmon Fisheries Commission. He was also Chancellor of University of Victoria from 1970 to 1973. He served three times on the Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission for British Columbia. These many responsibilities prevented him from devoting much time to writing. He retired from the bench a year before his death and was planning to get back to writing as the pressure of his other commitments gradually eased off. His life in his mature years were featured in many of his books, especially "A River Never Sleeps" and "Measure of the Year."

R.L. Haig-Brown died on October 9, 1976 at the age of 68.