Social Change: Thomas Nast, Illustrator

Illustrator Thomas Nast first made his name documenting the Civil War in all its gruesome reality, but he is best known for developing the political cartoon form and our modern depictions of Santa Claus. More

Incidents of Travel in Yucatán

In 1839, American diplomat John Lloyd Stephens and British artist Frederick Catherwood—both already celebrated for their adventures in Egypt, the Holy Land, Greece, and Rome—sailed together out of New York harbor on an expedition into the forbidding rain forests of present-day Honduras, Guatemala, and Mexico. More

A Christmas Carol

Dickens’s beloved classic of the meaning of Christmas that has inspired countless adaptations. More

The Steam-Powered Press

For years, the Harper brothers relied on a white draft horse named Dobbin, who plodded a circular path in the basement of their offices, turning a wooden shaft that powered the Treadwell hand press two floors above, until new technology sent him out to pasture. More

Herman Melville and Moby-Dick

Harper & Brothers turned down Herman Melville’s first book, Typee: A Peep at Polynesian Life, and it was released to strong sales by another publisher. More

The Harper Fire of 1853

The Harper offices in New York City were claimed by fire in 1853, when a plumber lit a lamp with a roll of paper and then attempted to extinguish the burning roll in a tub of water. More

James Harper, Mayor Of New York City

With corruption rampant in New York City politics, the newly formed American Republican Party convinced James Harper, one of the brothers who had founded J. & J. Harper in 1817, to run for mayor. More

Middlemarch

Ranked number one in a 2015 BBC poll of the 100 greatest British novels. More

George Eliot

Mary Anne Evans, born in 1819, led a turbulent life that often broke with Victorian social norms. More

The Pre-Packaged Library

The Harper brothers created collections of titles that allowed readers to amass an entire library instead of buying just a single book. More

From Printers to Publishers

James and John Harper began their business in 1817 primarily as printers, although they soon began to publish and sell original works. More

Education and Publishing

Beginning in 1830, the Harper brothers believed that the increasingly literate populace might clamor for turnkey collections. More

Mark Twain

In 1866, with mostly newspaper articles and other short works to his name, Mark Twain accepted an assignment from the Sacramento Union to produce a weekly column from Hawaii. More

Founded on Religion

Though a shared love of the written word inspired those who laid the foundation of HarperCollins, spreading Christian principles was a calling for them. More

Publishing Firsts: Stereotyping

The Harper brothers first began publishing in the early 1800s, when emerging technologies were fundamentally changing the process of printing–replacing the painstaking compositing, inking, and pulling processes needed for each page. More

Moby-Dick

Often called the greatest American novel of all time. More

The HarperCollins Logo

The HarperCollins logo represents the 1990 consolidation of Harper & Row, based in New York, and Collins Publishers, based in London and Glasgow. More