Norman Hapgood

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Norman Hapgood
Photo of Norman Hapgood.jpg
United States Minister to Denmark
In office
June 17, 1919 – December 9, 1919
PresidentWoodrow Wilson
Preceded byMaurice Francis Egan
Succeeded byJoseph Grew
Personal details
Born(1868-03-28)March 28, 1868
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
DiedApril 29, 1937(1937-04-29) (aged 69)
New York City
Resting placeGreen-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
Spouse(s)Emilie Bigelow Hapgood
Elizabeth Kempley Reynolds
Alma materHarvard University
OccupationDiplomat, editor, writer, journalist
Writing career
Notable worksThe Inside Story of Henry Ford's Jew-Mania

Norman Hapgood (March 28, 1868 – April 29, 1937) was an American writer, journalist, editor, and critic, and an American Minister to Denmark.[1]


Norman Hapgood was born March 28, 1868 in Chicago, Illinois to Charles Hutchins Hapgood (1836–1917) and Fanny Louise (Powers) Hapgood (1846–1922). He is the older brother of the journalist and author Hutchins Hapgood. He graduated from Harvard University in 1890 and from the law school there in 1893, then chose to become a writer. Hapgood worked as the drama critic of the New York City Commercial Advertiser and of the Bookman in 1897–1902. He was named the editor of Collier's Weekly in 1903 and remained at that post for about a decade, before leaving to become editor of Harper's Weekly in June 1913. His editorial style attracted much attention for its vigor and range.[citation needed]

Hapgood at Harvard (1895)

During the latter part of World War I and into the early post-war period Hapgood served as president of the League of Free Nations Association, which advocated in favor of a League of Nations to adjudicate international disputes.[2] In this capacity Hapgood helped advance the agenda of President Woodrow Wilson, who sought the establishment of such a body at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919.

In 1919 President Wilson appointed Hapgood Minister to Denmark, in which post he served for about six months. He helped expose Henry Ford's antisemitism in his article, "The Inside Story of Henry Ford's Jew-Mania", Part 4, Hearst's International (September 1922).[citation needed]

Hapgood was married twice. His first wife, Emilie Bigelow Hapgood, whom he married in 1896, went on to become famous in her own right as a theatrical producer in New York. They were divorced in 1915. Two years later, he married his second wife, Elizabeth Kempley Reynolds (1894–1974).[3] Elizabeth Hapgood, who spoke fluent Russian, was the first English-language translator of writings about acting by Konstantin Stanislavsky[4] (it was Norman Hapgood who had first suggested, in 1914, that the Moscow Art Theatre be invited to America[5]).

Norman Hapgood died on April 29, 1937 following prostate surgery at NewYork–Presbyterian Hospital.[1] He was buried in Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York.


Norman Hapgood. Bain News Service (date unknown).
  • (1897). Literary Statesmen and Others Essays on Men Seen from a Distance [reissued by Books for Libraries Press, 1972] ISBN 0-8369-2593-9
  • (1899). Abraham Lincoln: The Man of the People.
  • (1899). Daniel Webster.
  • (1901). George Washington.
  • (1901). The Stage in America, 1897–1900.
  • (1911). Industry and Progress.
  • (1919). The Jewish Commonwealth.
  • (1920). The Advancing Hour.
  • (1927). Professional Patriots (with Sidney Howard, and John Hearley).
  • (1927). Up From the City Streets: A Biographical Study of Alfred E. Smith (with Henry Moskowitz).
  • (1929). Why Janet Should Read Shakspere (sic).
  • (1930). The Changing Years.


  1. ^ a b Associated Press (April 30, 1937). "Norman Hapgood Dies". Montreal Gazette. Retrieved November 23, 2012. Norman Hapgood, 69 ... prominent author and editor and political associate of Alfred Smith in his terms as Governor of New York State, died today following an operation.
  2. ^ "Hapgood Backs Nations League As Peace Prop," New York Call, vol. 12, no. 32 (February 1, 1919), pg. 4.
  3. ^ Schenectady Gazette, "Mrs. Emilie Bigelow Hapgood Dies in Rome" (obituary); accessed April 25, 2015.
  4. ^ Stanislavski, Konstantin (2008). Benedetti, Jean (ed.). An Actor's Work: A Student's Diary. Taylor & Francis. p. xvi. ISBN 978-1-134-10146-7.
  5. ^ Benedetti, Jean (1990). Stanislavski: A Biography. Methuen Drama. p. 279. ISBN 978-0-413-52520-8.

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Peter Fenelon Collier
Editor of Collier's Weekly
Succeeded by
Robert J. Collier
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Maurice Francis Egan
U.S. Minister to Denmark
Succeeded by
Joseph C. Grew