Publisher for the Masses, Emanuel Haldeman-Julius
His admirers called him the Barnum of Books and the Voltaire of Kansas because of his ability to bring culture and education to the people. R. Alton Lee brings to life Emanuel Haldeman-Julius (1889-1951), a writer-publisher-entrepreneur who was one of America's most significant publishers and editorialists of the twentieth century, if not all time. His company published a record 500,000,000 copies of 2,580 titles and was second only to the U.S. Government Printing Office in the quantity of publications it produced. Lee details Haldeman-Julius's family origins in Russia and his formative years in Philadelphia, where he learned the book trade. As a writer and editor for the Social Democrat, Sunday Call, and Western Comrade, Haldeman-Julius was already well known by the time he launched his own publishing company. Haldeman-Julius knew, was nurtured by, and published writers such as Jack London, Upton Sinclair, Jane Addams, Emma Goldman, H. L. Mencken, Carl Sandburg, Eugene V. Debs, Clarence Darrow, Job Harriman, Will Durant, and Bertrand Russell, among others. Based in Girard, Kansas, his company, Haldeman-Julius Publications, covered socialist politics, the philosophy of free thought, and both new and classic books marketed to ordinary Americans, including the Little Blue Book series of classics in Western thought and literature. This biography of the enigmatic and energetic Haldeman-Julius opens a window into the fascinating world of early twentieth-century radical politics and publishing.