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William Lenhart McPherson
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Birth: May 23, 1865
Adams County
Pennsylvania, USA
Death: Nov. 8, 1930
New York
New York County (Manhattan)
New York, USA


Followed Noted Father, Edward McPherson, into newspaper Work and Won Note as Editorial Writer for New York Herald-Tribune: Published World War Books.


William Lenhart McPherson, author and journalist, son of the late Congressman, Edward McPherson, representative from Adams county, and a brother of Judge Donald P. McPherson, died Saturday at 12:30 o'clock at his home at 310 West Ninety-fifth street, New York city.

He had left the editorial rooms of the New York Herald-Tribune where he was editorial write, the previous day, apparently in the best of health. During the night he was stricken with Ptomaine poisoning which resulted fatally.

He was born in Gettysburg, May 23, 1865. Less than two years before his father, then serving his second term in the house of representatives, accompanied President Lincoln to the battlefield, near the McPherson home, where Lincoln, on November 19, 1863, delivered his immortal address.

Representative McPherson was one of the few members of the official party who was at Lincoln's side when the Gettysburg address was being rounded out en route to the national capital.

Comparatively little heed was paid to Lincoln's brief address at the time, for it was "buried" in newspapers dispatches following the lengthy oration of Edward Everett, who had fame as an orator.

After attending the local schools, Mr McPherson went to Pennsylvania college, now Gettysburg college. He received his bachelor of arts degree in 1883.


When the summer vacation was over, he matriculated at Harvard University, receiving a second bachelor's degree in 1884. He worked the following year for: an M.A. degree. Part of his postgraduate course was passed in German universities, and in 1885, at the age of twenty, Harvard awarded him his Master's degree.

After a brief visit to his home, here, he joined the New York Tribune as a reporter. For two years he worked with distinction on the city staff.


Here his work won immediate recognition. He displayed a back-ground of politics and astonished those who did not know that this smiling, blue-eyed youth of twenty-four had grown up in its atmosphere, for his father, Edward McPherson, who was also a graduate of old Pennsylvania college-he also earned his bachelor's degree at the age of eighteeen-had won his reputation as a journalist and pamphleteer at the age of twenty-one.

The elder McPherson also attained distinction as an author and, in 1877-the year he joined the New York Tribune staff-Princeton honored him with the degree of Master of Arts. Two volumes of history bore his name when Princeton conferred this honor. In the preceding year he had served as permanent chairman of the Republican National convention.


In 1899, William L. McPherson was temporarily detached from the Washington Bureau to visit Cuba and write conditions in the new republic. After his letters had appeared in the New York Tribune for the better part of a year, he returned to Washington.


During all his years in the Washington Bureau he contributed constantly to the editorial page, telegraphing his editorials from the national capital. In 1902 he resigned from the bureau and went to work on "The Washington Times" as an editorial writer. But he was back on the Tribune before the second year of absence had ended.


In 1903 he began work as an editorial writer on the Tribune. This same year he also took over the active editorship of the Tribune Almanac as his father, then in his seventy-third year, returned to Gettysburg to pass his remaining years amid the scenes of his youth.

At the time the father surrendered the editorship of the Tribune Almanac to the son, it was recognized as the best compendium of political statistics in the country. but it was not long before it was enlarged and improved.

On June 5, 1909, Mr. McPherson married Mrs. Jesse Cuthbert McDonald, of Washington. Two daughters were born to them. Janet Cuthbert and Jessie Middleton. They attended St. Agnes Chapel school-one of the Trinity Parrish schools-and prepared for college at St. Agatha's. They are now studying at Barnard college.


During the last year of the World War, his critical analysis of the movements of the warring forces, and his editorials on other war-time problems evoked widespread interest.

He also translated short stories from the French and German. These made their appearance weekly in the Tribune and other newspapers throughout the country.

In 1918 he published his first book, "Tales of Wartime France." The same year his translation of Dr. Wilheim Muhlon's Diary appeared under the title of "The Vandal of Europe." In 1919 another book from his pen, "The Strategy of the Great War" was published. "A Short History of the Great War," made its appearance in 1920.

This was followed, within a few months by a translation of Maurice Berger's "Germany After the Armistice," He wrote in 1922 and appendix covering the World War and the treaties for the sixth edition of J. Holland Rose's "The Development of the European Nations."


Mr. McPherson found relaxation in sports, especially baseball and football. But football was his favorite and during the season, it was a rare Saturday afternoon that did not see him attending a contest between rival college events.

A Saturday afternoon that kept him in his New York office saw him dividing his time between his desk and the Herald Tribune city room, where the office boys crowd round the tickers watching the reports of the games on the tape.

The boys invariably noted the place n the tape where Mr. McPherson had left off, because when he returned he would always ask them to tell him of the important plays he had missed.

Like his father, he was honored by by his alma mater with a degree. This was in 1923, when Gettysburg college made him a Doctor of Letters.

His clubs were the Harvard, of New York; Chevy Chase of Washington, and the Authors of London.

Besides Mrs. McPherson and their daughters, a sister and three brothers survive. They are Mrs. David Dale, of Bellefonte; Judge Donald P. McPherson of Gettysburg; Norman C. McPherson, of Short Hills, New Jersey; and John B. McPherson, of Brookline, Massachusetts, a trustee of Gettysburg college.

Funeral services were held today at 3 o'clock in Campbell's funeral church, Broadway and Sixty-sixth street, New York.

The honorary pallbearers include his brothers and the following; Ogden Reid, editor of the Herald Tribune, Arthur S. Draper, Geoffrey Parsons, H.F. Dana and James J. Montague.

The Gettysburg Times
{Gettysburg, Pennsylvania}
November 10 1930 
Family links: 
  Edward McPherson (1830 - 1895)
  Annie Dods Crawford McPherson (1834 - 1906)
  Jessie Cuthbert McPherson (1872 - 1947)
  Jessie McPherson Orgain (1912 - 1980)*
  John Bruce McPherson (1863 - 1934)*
  William Lenhart McPherson (1865 - 1930)
  Norman C. McPherson (1869 - 1939)*
  Donald Paxton McPherson (1870 - 1937)*
  Anna Dunlop McPherson Dale (1874 - 1958)*
*Calculated relationship
Evergreen Cemetery
Adams County
Pennsylvania, USA
Maintained by: angel searcher
Originally Created by: pat callahan
Record added: Jul 05, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 14827739
William Lenhart McPherson
Added by: Jack Stevens
William Lenhart McPherson
Added by: pat callahan
William Lenhart McPherson
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- angel searcher
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- angel searcher
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