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#OnThisDay October 28: 1875: Marks the birth date of Gilbert H. Grosvenor, the editor credited with transforming ‘National Geographic Magazine’ from a small scholarly journal into a dynamic world-renowned monthly #AceHistoryDesk report

#AceHistoryReport – Nov.02: Born in Istanbul (Constantinople), Turkey, Grosvenor’s family immigrated to the United States when he was fifteen, where he became an honor student, eventually studying at Amherst College in Massachusetts. Grosvenor joined the magazine in 1899 as an assistant editor.

#AceHistoryDesk says #OTD National Geographic Society. Exterior of National Geographic Society.…….Gilbert Grosvenor was recommended for the position by a friend of his father’s, inventor Alexander Graham Bell, who was at the time, president of the National Geographic Society. Bell became his father-in-law shortly thereafter when, in 1900, Grosvenor wed Bell’s daughter, Elsie May.

National Geographic Society. Exterior of National Geographic Society. Theodor Horydczak, photographer; [Washington, D.C.], ca. 1920-1950. Horydczak Collection. Prints & Photographs Division

Four years after joining National Geographic, Grosvenor took over as editor-in-chief and in 1920, he was elected president of the the society. Grosvenor filled the dual roles of editor of the magazine and president of the society until 1954, when he resigned to become chairman of the board, a position he held until his death in 1966.[Gilbert Hovey Grosvenor, head of National Geographic Society,..photo. by Bain News Service, New York]. [1927]. Bain Collection. Prints & Photographs Division

Gilbert Hovey Grosvenor, head of National Geographic Society,..photo. by Bain News Service, New York]. [1927]. Bain Collection. Prints & Photographs Division

The National Geographic Society was founded in Washington, D.C., in 1888 to support “the increase and diffusion of geographic knowledge.” The society’s founders, an eclectic group of well-traveled men, considered a magazine one means of accomplishing this mission. They published the first National Geographic nine months after forming the organization. Detail of Family Tree of Gilbert Grosvenor and Elsie May Bell. Alexander Graham Bell Family Papers at the Library of Congress. Manuscript Division

Detail of Family Tree of Gilbert Grosvenor and Elsie May Bell. Alexander Graham Bell Family Papers at the Library of Congress. Manuscript Division

In its early years, National Geographic was a journal with a plain cover and a circulation of less than one thousand. Under Grosvenor’s leadership, the magazine developed its extraordinary photographic service and map department, ultimately boosting membership from 900 in 1899 to more than 2 million at the time of his retirement in 1955. 

During Grosvenor’s tenure, using revenues from the magazine, the society sponsored many notable expeditions and research projects including Admiral Robert Peary‘s 1909 expedition to the North Pole; Hiram Bingham’s 1911 discovery of Machu Picchu, and William Beebe’srecord-setting undersea descent in 1934. The National Geographic Society continues this tradition, and has sponsored more than 8,000 research projects and more than 500 expeditions around the globe. Richly illustrated within the magazine, these explorations of land, air, and sea have introduced millions of people to amazing new worlds. 

Today, the National Geographic Society is the largest nonprofit scientific and educational organization of its kind. In addition to publishing its flagship magazine, the society produces a wide array of educational materials and programs. The subject of many of these is the conservation and protection of wildlife, causes long championed by Gilbert H. Grosvenor. Books. Bound Volume 54 of National Geographic Magazine. Theodor Horydczak, photographer; ca. 1920-1950. Horydczak Collection. Prints & Photographs Division

Books. Bound Volume 54 of National Geographic Magazine. Theodor Horydczak, photographer; ca. 1920-1950. Horydczak Collection. Prints & Photographs Division

On October 28, 1919, Congress passed the Volstead Act providing for enforcement of the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which was ratified nine months earlier. Known as the Prohibition Amendment, it prohibited the “manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors” in the United States.

#AceNewsDesk report ………….Published: Nov.02: 2021:

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