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Noah Brooks


Centurion, 1880–1903

Born 25 October 1830 in Castine, Maine

Died 16 August 1903 in Pasadena, California

Buried Castine Cemetery, Castine, Maine

Proposed by Eastman Johnson and Alfred Wilkinson

Elected 4 April 1880 at age forty-nine

Century Memorial

Noah Brooks was an example of a peculiarly American and interesting type of the man of letters, mingling with the journalism which was his chief occupation, the writing of fiction, narratives of travel and observation, personal sketches in the nature of mémoires pour server and serious biography and history. Descended from pure New England stock, connected with the Maine “aristocracy of the sea,” he began his career as a reporter in Boston, joined the pioneer migration to California, where he “ran” the Marysville Appeal, Yuba County, and at the opening of Lincoln’s administration returned East as correspondent at Washington of the California press. There he became the friend and, on some very interesting occasions, the confidential agent of Mr. Lincoln, and formed close acquaintance with many of the leaders, civil and military, of that exciting period. After the war and a brief tenure of the Naval Office at the Port of San Francisco, he was for a time the Managing Editor of The Alta California, also contributing to The Overland Monthly under Bret Harte, and to the Eastern magazines, and writing his charming series of books for youth, of which The Boy Emigrants was the first. In 1871 he again returned to the East and was for the next score or more of years an editorial writer for The Tribune and The Times and Editor of The Newark Advertiser. He was a valuable newspaper man, widely informed, facile, often brilliant, with a trustworthy flair for that which interests the public, genial humor and independent, individual judgment of men and their motives. Socially he was most happily equipped: in friendship he was fastidious, sincere, devoted. His generosity to the young was boundless, though modest, and was as helpful in wise affection as in material aid.

Edward Cary
1904 Century Association Yearbook