Albert Nelson Marquis’ death on December 21, 1943, made front-page news across America. Numerous editorials praised him for his decades as a chronicler of American achievement. The New York World Telegram summed up his contributions as follows: “It was never our privilege to meet Albert Nelson Marquis, but to us and countless other newspaper workers his death at the age of 88 means the loss of a good and helpful friend.”
Albert Nelson Marquis created Who’s Who in America and was its editor-in-chief for 41 years. A seeker of essential facts concerning the careers of notable Americans, from Olaf Syerre Aamodt, Agricultural Department agronomist, to Vladimir Kosma Zworykin, director of the RCA research laboratories in New Jersey, Marquis ensured that professionals could turn confidently to Who’s Who. No one ever bought or bullied their way into the book, although many tried. Marquis established rigid standards for admission from which he never deviated, based on talented and meritorious achievement.