William L. Alden
|William Livingston Alden|
October 9, 1837|
|Died||January 14, 1908(aged 70)|
William Livingston Alden (1837–1908) was a prominent American journalist, author, humorist, canoe enthusiast, and diplomat.
He graduated from Jefferson in 1858 and read law in New York City with William M. Evarts, joining the bar in 1860. He practiced law until 1866. He then became a journalist, writing for the Scribner’s Monthly, The Atlantic, New York World and Daily Graphic. He later worked on the editorial staff of the New York Times and produced a weekly column called ""Minor Topics." He also wrote humor pieces and juvenile fiction. While in New York City he became an early member of the Theosophical Society, an esoteric organisation founded by Helena Blavatsky in 1875.
He is also credited with bringing the sport of canoeing to the United States. He founded the New York Canoe Club in 1871, which was the first canoeing organization in America. He was a founding member of the American Canoe Association and served as the first Commodore.
He was appointed Consul General in Rome by President Grover Cleveland in 1885, a position he held until 1890. He then lived in Paris, writing for the New York Herald, and later living and writing in London. He died in 1908.
- Riley, Sam G. (1995). "Alden, William Livingston". Biographical dictionary of American newspaper columnists. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 6.
- "Jefferson College 1802-1865". U. Grant Miller Library Digital Archives. Washington & Jefferson College. Archived from the original on 2009-05-01.
- Jennings Coffin, Selden; William Baxter Owen. "William Livingston Alden, A.M.". Record of the men of Lafayette: Brief biographical sketches of the alumni of Lafayette College from its organization to the present time. Lafayette College. p. 210.
- Biographical and Historical Catalogue of Washington and Jefferson College. Elm Street Printing Company. 1889. p. 211.
- The column was later renamed Topics of the Times in 1896 with Frederick Craig Mortimer as the author until 1926, when it was taken over by Simeon Strunsky until 1946.
- "THE LIFEWORK OF WILLIAM L. ALDEN; Highly Esteemed Both Sides the Atlantic for His Clever Writings. FAMOUS AS A HUMORIST Consul General at Rome Under Cleveland -- First Commodore of American Canoe Association.". New York Times. 1908-01-16. Archived from the original on 1908-01-16.
- Gary Lachman (2012). Madame Blavatsky: The Mother of Modern Spirituality. New York: Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin. p. 136.
- "The Cruising Canoe and its Outfit". Harper's New Monthly Magazine. Harper & Brothers. August 1880.
- Hoffman, Ronald C. (June 1967). "The Formation and Growth of the American Canoe Association" (PDF). Ph.D. Dissertation. American Canoe Association.
- "Commodores / Presidents". American Canoe Association. 2008.
- Works by William L. Alden at Project Gutenberg
- Works by or about William L. Alden at Internet Archive
- Works by William L. Alden at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
- Many classic W. L. Alden short stories are read in Mister Ron's Basement Podcast, now indexed to make them easy to find