Macmillan Inc.

From Justapedia, unleashing the power of collective wisdom
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Macmillan Publishers
FounderGeorge Edward Brett
SuccessorSimon & Schuster; Gale; McGraw Hill
Country of originUnited States
Headquarters locationNew York City, New York

Macmillan Inc. is a defunct American book publishing company. Originally established as the American division of the British Macmillan Publishers, the two were later separated and acquired by other companies, with the remnants of the original American division of Macmillan present in McGraw-Hill Education's Macmillan/McGraw-Hill textbooks, Gale's Macmillan Reference USA division, and some trade imprints of Simon & Schuster that were transferred when both companies were owned by Paramount Communications. The German publisher Holtzbrinck, which bought the British Macmillan in 1999, purchased US rights to the Macmillan name in 2001 and rebranded its American division with it in 2007.[1]


Brett family

George Edward Brett opened the first Macmillan office in the United States in 1869 and Macmillan sold its U.S. operations to the Brett family, George Platt Brett Sr. and George Platt Brett Jr. in 1896, resulting in the creation of an American company, Macmillan Publishing.[2] Even with the split of the American company from its parent company in Britain, George Brett Jr. and Harold Macmillan remained close personal friends.[3]

George P. Brett Jr. made the following comments in a letter dated 23 January 1947 to Daniel Macmillan about his family's devotion to the American publishing industry:

For the record my grandfather was employed by Macmillan's of England as a salesman. He came to the United States with his family in the service of Macmillan's of England and built up a business of approximately $50,000 before he died. He was succeeded . . . by my father, who eventually incorporated The Macmillan Company of New York and built up business of about $9,000,000. I succeeded my father, and we currently doing a business of approximately $12,000,000. So then, the name of Brett and the name of Macmillan have been and are synonymous in the United States.

Under the leadership of the Brett family, MacMillan served as the publisher of American authors, Winston Churchill,[4] Margaret Mitchell, who wrote Gone with the Wind,[5] and Jack London,[6] author of White Fang and Call of the Wild.

The Bretts remained in control of the American offices of Macmillan from its creation in 1869 to the early 1960s, "a span matched by few other families in the history of United States business."[3]

Velikovsky's Worlds in Collision

In spite of strong protest of leading astronomers of the time, MacMillan published in 1950 Imanuel Velikovsky's Worlds in Collision. When MacMillan was threatened by a boycott it transferred the book to Doubleday[7]

Mergers and end

Macmillan merged with Crowell Collier Publishing Company in 1961. The US publisher became a media giant in its own right and renamed itself Macmillan, Inc. in 1973.

In 1979, Thomas Mellon Evans bought a large stake in Macmillan. Macmillan then was bid on by Mattel and ABC, only for an acquisition by ABC to break down.[8] Macmillan then sold several non-publishing divisions. In 1980, Macmillan sold musical instrument maker C.G. Conn.[9] In 1981, Macmillan sold Hagstrom Map, the bookstore Brentano's and the printer Alco‐Gravure.[10][11][12]

In 1981, Macmillan acquired the children's publisher Bradbury Press.[13] In 1982, Macmillan sold its British division, Cassell, to CBS.[14] In 1984, Macmillan acquired the Scribner Book Companies and the textbook publishers Sieber & McIntyre, Dellen Publishing, and Pennwell Books.[15] The following year, Macmillan acquired the publishing operations of ITT (Sams, Bobbs-Merrill, legal publisher Michie Co., trade magazine company Intertec, Marquis Who's Who, and G. K. Hall & Co.).[16] Bobbs-Merrill was subsequently closed, with its remaining books moved to Macmillan.[17] In 1986, Macmillan sold the music publisher G. Schirmer, Inc. to Music Sales Group.[18] In 1987, Macmillan acquired the educational publisher Laidlaw from Doubleday.[19] In 1988, Macmillan acquired the educational publisher Jossey-Bass.[20]

The company was acquired by the controversial British tycoon Robert Maxwell's Maxwell Communication Corporation in 1989. Later in 1989, Macmillan acquired Prentice Hall Information from Simon & Schuster and sold Intertec, Macmillan Book Clubs, and Gryphon Editions to K-III Communications.[21][22] Maxwell Macmillan Professional and Business Reference Publishing (the former Prentice Hall division) was sold to Thomson Professional Publishing.[23] Macmillan's directories (led by Marquis Who's Who and National Register Publishing) were sold to Reed Publishing.[24] Michie was sold to Mead.[25] Macmillan also sold the department store Gump's, the trade school Katharine Gibbs, and part of its stake in language school Berlitz.[26]

Maxwell died in 1991, and Macmillan began selling properties and eventually filed for bankruptcy. Paramount acquired Macmillan Computer Publishing (Sams).[27] Standard Rate & Data Service was sold to OAG, a sister Maxwell company.[28] Collier's Encyclopedia was sold to Planeta and DeAgostini.[29] Macmillan Inc. was eventually sold to Simon & Schuster/Paramount Communications for $552.8 million and finalized in February 1994.[30][31][32] (At the time, Viacom had just purchased S&S via the acquisition of its former parent company Paramount Communications; it is now owned by CBS Corporation.) The Macmillan and Atheneum adult trade publications were merged into Scribner.[33] Macmillan Publishing USA became the name of Simon & Schuster's reference division. Pearson acquired the Macmillan name in America in 1998 (and merged Macmillan Computer Publishing with Addison Wesley Longman to form Pearson Tech Group division of Pearson Education), following its purchase of the Simon & Schuster educational and professional group (which included various Macmillan properties).[1] Pearson sold the children's reference imprints of Macmillan Library Reference in preparation for a sale.[34] Pearson sold the Macmillan Reference USA division (which included Scribner Reference and G. K. Hall) to Thomson Gale in 1999.

Macmillan's school publishing operations were merged into a joint operation with McGraw-Hill in 1989. McGraw-Hill acquired full ownership of Macmillan/McGraw-Hill in 1993 after Maxwell's death.[35]


Holtzbrinck purchased most of the rights to the Macmillan name from Pearson in 2001,[36] but not any of the businesses then associated with it. Holtzbrinck rebranded its US division with the name in 2007.[1]

The online user-maintained database Jacketflap reports these constituent American publishers of Holtzbrinck's Macmillan division (August 2010):[37]

Farrar Straus and Giroux, Henry Holt & Company, W.H. Freeman and Worth Publishers, Palgrave Macmillan, Bedford/St. Martin's, Picador, Roaring Brook Press, St. Martin’s Press, Tor Books, and Bedford Freeman & Worth Publishing Group.



See also


  1. ^ a b c Milliot, Jim (October 9, 2007). "Holtzbrinck's U.S. Arm Now Macmillan". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved October 17, 2018.
  2. ^ "PUBLISHING: Crofter's Crop" Time January 22, 1951.
  3. ^ a b Macmillan from
  4. ^ Kershaw, Alex (1999). Jack London: A Life. St. Martin's Griffin. p. 110. ISBN 0-312-19904-X.
  5. ^ Saxon, Wolfgang (February 15, 1984). "George P. Brett is dead at 91; Headed Macmillan Company". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-04-19.
  6. ^ Jack London (1943) – Full cast and crew
  7. ^ Michael D. Gordin, How Lysenkoism became Pseudoscience, Journal of the History of Biology (2012) 45:443-468
  8. ^ "Business People". The New York Times. 1979-12-04. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  9. ^ "Tribute: Daniel Henkin". Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  10. ^ Pace, Eric (July 25, 1981). "Officers May Buy Brentano's". The New York Times.
  11. ^ "Macmillan Completes Sale Of Brentano's Bookstore Unit". The Wall Street Journal. August 4, 1981. p. 39. Alternate Link via ProQuest.
  12. ^ "Briefs". The New York Times. 1981-05-22. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  13. ^ "Briefs". The New York Times. 1982-12-07. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  14. ^ "Macmillan Unit Acquired by CBS". The New York Times. 1982-05-18. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  15. ^ Wiggins, Philip H. (1984-11-07). "Market Place; Textbook Stock Outlook (Published 1984)". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-11-21.
  16. ^ "Macmillan Agrees To Purchase ITT's Publishing Business". Wall Street Journal, Eastern edition. New York. 1985-03-06. p. 1. ISSN 0099-9660. ProQuest 397927462.
  17. ^ McDowell, Edwin (1985-04-24). "Two Publishers, Bobbs-Merrill and Dial, Being Dissolved". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-10-21.
  18. ^ "G. Schirmer Is Sold". The New York Times. 1986-05-16. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  19. ^ Storch, Charles. "47% OF STAFF AT LAIDLAW GET THE AX". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  20. ^ "Two Publishers Illustrate Why Ownership Matters". Fifty by Fifty. 2019-06-26. Retrieved 2021-03-13.
  21. ^ "P. M. Briefing 2 Simon & Schuster Units Sold: [P.M. Final Edition]". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles, Calif. 1989-10-31. p. 3. ISSN 0458-3035. ProQuest 280803448.
  22. ^ "The Media Business; Macmillan and Maxwell Sell Four Units to Kohlberg". The New York Times. 1988-12-02. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2014-08-23.
  23. ^ "Maxwell's Auction Fails For a 2d Time". The New York Times. 1991-09-21. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-10-21.
  24. ^ "Macmillan directories go to Reed for $146 million". Publishers Weekly. 1991-10-18. Retrieved 2019-12-22.
  25. ^ "Macmillan Agrees to Sell Michie to Mead". Associated Press. Retrieved 2014-08-23.
  26. ^ McDowell, Edwin (1990-05-28). "The Media Business; a Leaner Macmillan Profits in Best Sellers". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  27. ^ "The Media Business; Macmillan Computer". The New York Times. 1991-11-14. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-10-21.
  28. ^ "STRIPPED-DOWN SRDS FOCUSES ON CORE AD BIZ". Crain's Chicago Business. 1995-12-09. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  29. ^ "European publishers agree jointly to buy Maxwell's P. F. Collier". Wall Street Journal, Eastern edition; New York, N.Y. New York. 1993-09-08. p. 6. ISSN 0099-9660. ProQuest 398360936.
  30. ^ Lyall, Sarah (1994-01-24). "THE MEDIA BUSINESS; Paramount Publishing to Cut Jobs and Books". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-10-01.
  31. ^ "Paramount completes acquisition of Macmillan". United Press International. February 28, 1994. Retrieved 2020-10-01.
  32. ^ "Corporate History". News and Corporate Information about Simon & Schuster, Inc. Retrieved 2020-10-01.
  33. ^ "Paramount putting its stamp on Macmillan". Publishers Weekly. 1994-01-31. Retrieved 2019-10-15.
  34. ^ "Six Macmillan Library Kids Imprints Closed". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved 2019-10-15.
  35. ^ Bloomberg News (27 August 1993). "Company News; Mcgraw-Hill to Buy Stake in Schoolbook Publisher". The New York Times. p. 3. Retrieved 24 March 2018.
  36. ^ "Holtzbrinck shows Macmillan sales rise". The Bookseller. February 23, 2001. Archived from the original on April 1, 2009. Retrieved September 30, 2016.
  37. ^ "Publisher information: MacMillan". JacketFlap. August 15, 2010. Retrieved 2012-08-30.

Further reading

  • James, Elizabeth (2002) Macmillan: a Publishing Tradition. Basingstoke: Palgrave ISBN 0-333-73517-X