The New International Encyclopædia/Johnson, Rossiter

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JOHNSON, Rossiter (1840—). An American editor and author, born at Rochester, N. Y. He graduated at the University of Rochester in 1863, from 1864 to 1869 was assistant editor of the Rochester Democrat, a Republican journal, and in 1869-72 edited the Concord (N. H.) Statesman. In 1873-77 he was an associate editor in the revision of the American Cyclopædia, in 1878 edited the authorized Life of Farragut, and in 1879-80 aided S. H. Gay in the preparation of the final two volumes of the latter's History of the United States (4 vols., 1876-80). He also became editor of the Annual Cyclopædia in 1883, and from 1886 to 1888 was managing editor of the Cyclopædia of American Biography. In 1891-94 he was on the editorial staff of the Standard Dictionary. Among other compilations edited by him are The British Poets (3 vols., 1876); Famous Single and Fugitive Poems (1877; revised and enlarged ed. 1891); Play-day Poems (1878), an anthology of humorous verse in English; with C. A. Dana, Fifty Perfect Poems (1882); the well-known Little Classics series of prose selections (16 vols., 1874-75: two additional vols., 1880; 30th ed. 1892); and The World's Great Books (1898-1901). His original publications include in fiction, Phaeton Rogers (1881); in verse, Idler and Poet (1883), containing “O for a lodge in a garden of cucumbers;” and in history, A History of the French War (1882); A History of the War Between the United States and Great Britain (1882); and A History of the War of Secession (1888). He also contributed “The Whispering Gallery” department to the Overland Monthly, and edited “The Literary Querist” of the Lamp (formerly the Book-Buyer). For six years he was secretary of the New York Authors Club, whose sumptuous and unique Liber Scriptorum (1893) he prepared with J. D. Champlin and G. C. Eggleston. He received the degrees of Ph.D. and LL.D. from the University of Rochester.