Sketch of Stephen Bonsal 1898
March 29, 1865|
Baltimore, Maryland, United States
|Died||June 8, 1951(aged 86)|
|Occupation||journalist, war correspondent, diplomat, translator|
Bonsal was born in Baltimore, Maryland. He was educated at St. Paul's School in Concord, New Hampshire. He continued his studies in Germany at Heidelberg, Bonn and Vienna. Bonsal traveled extensively. He claimed that he had visited all the countries of Europe, Asia (with the exception of Persia), and South America.
Bonsal was later a special correspondent of the New York Herald (1885–1907), reporting the development of military conflicts including
- Serbo-Bulgarian War, 1885
- Macedonian uprising, 1890
- First Sino-Japanese War, 1895
- Cuban insurrection, 1897
- Spanish–American War, 1898
- Chinese relief expedition, 1900
- Samar, Batangas, Mindinao, 1901
- Venezuela, Matas rebellion, blockage, 1903
- Russo-Japanese War, 1904–1905.
He was a foreign correspondent for the New York Times in 1910–1911.
In 1891-1896, Bonsal served as secretary and chargé-d'affaire of the US diplomatic missions in Beijing, Seoul and Tokyo. He also served for at short time at the US embassy in Madrid.
World War I
During World War I Bonsal served in the American Expeditionary Forces with the rank of lieutenant colonel. Afterwards he was President Woodrow Wilson's private translator during the 1919 Peace Conference in Paris.
Unfinished Business (1944), a diary describing his experiences during the Paris Peace Treaty negotiations, describing all the Allied infighting and waxing lyrical about the plight of the wounded veterans and their families won him the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for History.
"No one else has presented the plight of the plain people of Europe, in relation to the strained secrecy of the Conference, and few have written of their agony as does Colonel Bonsal in terms so hardheaded and so poignant." (Time Magazine)
- Morocco as It Is (1894, W. H. Allen, London)
- The Real Condition of Cuba Today (1897, Harper, New York, NY)
- The Fight for Santiago (1899, Doubleday & McClure, New York, NY)
- The Golden Horseshoe (1906, Macmillan, New York, NY)
- The American Mediterranean (1912, Moffat and Yard, New York, NY)
- Edward Fitzgerald Beale (1912, Putnam, New York, NY)
- Heyday in a Vanished World (1937, Norton, New York, NY) (autobiography)
- Unfinished Business (1944, Doubleday, New York, NY) (1945 Pulitzer Prize for History)
- When the French Were Here (1945, Doubleday, New York, NY)
- Suitors and Supplicants (1946, Prentice-Hall, New York, NY)
- The Cause of Liberty (1947, M. Joseph, London)
- Leonard, John William et al. (1906). "Bonsal, Stephen" in Who's who in America, Vol. 4, p. 177., p. 177, at Google Books
- "Books: Lost Time," Time (US). February 28, 1944; retrieved 2011-05-12
- Brennan, Elizabeth. (1999). Who's who of Pulitzer Prize winners, p. 293., p. 293, at Google Books
- WorldCat Identities: Bonsal, Stephen 1865-1951
- Leonard, John William and Albert Nelson Marquis. (1906). Who's who in America. Vol. 4. Chicago: A.N. Marquis. OCLC 1141571