Hubert Howe Bancroft - Encyclopedia


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HUBERT HOWE BANCROFT (1832-), American historical writer, was born at Granville, Ohio, on the 5th of May 1832. From 1852 to 1868 he was a bookseller in San Francisco. During this period he accumulated a great library of historical material, and at last gave up business in order to devote himself to the publication of his Native Races of the Pacific States (5 vols. 1874-1876), History of the Pacific States of North America (21 vols. 1882-1890), and other works. For the collection of data he necessarily relied upon the labours of a corps of assistants, and the publications named represent, properly speaking, an encyclopaedia rather than a unified history; but as a storehouse of material their value is great and is likely to be enduring. In 1905 Bancroft's vast collection was acquired by the university of California. An account of his methods of work is given in his Literary Industries (1890).

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