Harper's weekly - monthly - magazine

DEFINITION

Published from 1857 to 1916, it carried illustrations of many of the most famous American artists of that period, which, in turn, had major influence on the American public???s perceptions of public figures and events. "Harper???s Weekly" is named for brothers who together established a New York printing firm, Harper & Brothers: They were James, John, Joseph and Fletcher, and they became the largest book publisher in the country. Fletcher Harper, aware of the popularity of the ???London Illustrated News???, began ???Harper???s Monthly??? in 1850, and initially the focus was on publishing writings by established English authors such as Charles Dickens and William Thackeray. With the first press run of 7,500 copies selling out immediately, the publication became so successful that in 1857, ???Harper???s Weekly??? was launched. Three years later, the circulation reached 200,000 copies. ???Harper???s??? association with illustration began with the hiring of Thomas Nast, who did caricatures of political figures that played a major role in people???s perceptions of politicians. Other illustrators who worked for the magazine were Winslow Homer, Charles Dana Gibson, Howard Pyle, James Flagg, Maxfield Parrish and Frederic Remington. Edwin Austin Abbey worked for them for years, having risen through the ranks and then being sent by Harper's to England to research settings for a novel. He lived there the remainder of his life and for many years, continued to send illustrations. The descendant of ???Harper???s Weekly??? is ???Harper???s Magazine???, which is published into the 21st Century. Sources: http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAharpers.htm; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harper's_Magazine; Walter Reed, "The Illustrator in America, 1860-2000".(LPD)

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