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Macmillan Publishers (United States)

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Macmillan Publishers (United States)

Macmillan Publishers (United States)
Status Defunct
Founded 1869
Founder George Edward Brett
Successor Simon & Schuster
Country of origin United States
Headquarters location New York City

Macmillan Publishers USA was the former name of a now mostly defunct Holtzbrinck, which bought Macmillan UK in 1999, purchased most US rights to the name in 2001 and rebranded its American division with it in 2007.[1]


Brett family


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]

Mergers and end

Through its merger with Crowell Collier in 1961 and other acquisitions (notably The Scribner Book Companies in 1984), the U.S. publisher became a media giant in its own right, as Macmillan, Inc. It was acquired by the controversial British tycoon Robert Maxwell in 1989 and eventually sold to Simon & Schuster in 1994 (at the time, Viacom had just purchased S&S, it is now owned by CBS Corporation) in the wake of Maxwell's death (1991) and the subsequent bankruptcy proceedings. Macmillan Publishing USA became the name of Simon & Schuster's reference division. Pearson acquired the Macmillan name in America since 1998, following its purchase of the Simon & Schuster educational and professional group (which included various Macmillan properties).[1] Pearson sold the Macmillan Reference USA division (which included Scribner Reference) to Thomson Gale in 1999.


Holtzbrinck purchased most of the rights to the Macmillan name from Pearson in 2001,[7] but not any of the businesses then associated with it. Holtzbrinck rebranded its US division with the name in 2007.[1] However, McGraw-Hill Education continues to market its pre-kindergarten through elementary school titles under its Macmillan/McGraw-Hill brand.

The online user-maintained database Jacketflap reports these constituent American publishers (August 2010):[8]

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 "Holtzbrinck's U.S. Arm Now Macmillan" Jim Milliot. Publishers Weekly. October 9, 2007.
  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.  
  5. ^ Saxon, Wolfgang (February 15, 1984). "George P. Brett is dead at 91; Headed Macmillan Company".  
  6. ^ Jack London (1943) - Full cast and crew
  7. ^ "Holtzbrinck shows Macmillan sales rise" Bookseller. February 23, 2001.
  8. ^ "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
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