Poet, Social Reformer, US Diplomat. Born into a wealthy Philadelphia, Pennsylvania family, he was raised in a life of leisure that allowed him to explore a love of poetry he developed at an early age. Sent to attend Princeton University as a young adult, he helped found the school's literary magazine "Nassau Monthly" before he graduated in 1842. Despite reading law after his graduation, he devoted much of his life to writing poetry and producing plays. He published the work "The Lessons of Life, and other Poems" in 1848, and produced a number of well received plays in the 1850 (the most famous of the times was 1853's "Francesca da Rimini"). When the Civil War began, he and other prominent Philadelphia leaders were greatly concerned about the element of seccessionism and Southern sympathy in their city. To combat that, they founded the Union League, with George Henry Boker as it's driving force. The organization devoted itself during war in the the promotion the cause of Union, patriotism, financial and material support for the United States Sanitation Commission, and the encouragement of men to enlist in the defense of the Union. Boker served as it's secretary from 1863 to 1871, and used his writing skills to further the Union cause during the war, publishing the work "Poems of the War" in 1864. Grateful for his efforts, President Ulysses S. Grant appointed him United States Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire in 1872. He served in that post until 1875, when he was named Ambassador to the Russian Empire, which he held that post until 1878. Returning to Philadelphia, he devoted the rest of his time to literary pursuits and to the improvement of his city. In 1994 the work the "Theatrical Life of George Henry Boker" was published by author Thomas M. Kitts.
Bio by: RPD2