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, also known as Macmillan Publishing, was an American publishing company. The former American division of the British Macmillan Publishers, it was acquired by Simon & Schuster in 1994. Remnants of the American Macmillan are present in McGraw-Hill's Macmillan/McGraw-Hill textbooks and Gale's Macmillan Reference USA division. The German publisher Holtzbrinck bought Macmillan UK in 1999, purchased the US rights to the name in 2001 and rebranded its American division with it in 2007.[1]


Brett familyEdit

George Edward Brett opened the first Macmillan office in the United States in 1869 and Macmillan sold its U.S. operations to the Brett family, George Platt Brett Sr. and George Platt Brett Jr. in 1896, resulting in the creation of an American company, Macmillan Publishing.[2] Even with the split of the American company from its parent company in Britain, George Brett Jr. and Harold MacMillan remained close personal friends.[3]

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 endEdit

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


Main article: List of authors of Macmillan Publishing (United States)


See alsoEdit


  • James, Elizabeth (2002) Macmillan: a Publishing Tradition. Basingstoke: Palgrave ISBN 0-333-73517-X


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Holtzbrinck's U.S. Arm Now Macmillan" Jim Milliot. Publishers Weekly. October 9, 2007.
  2. "PUBLISHING: Crofter's Crop" Time January 22, 1951.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Macmillan from
  4. Kershaw, Alex (1999). Jack London: A Life. St. Martin's Griffin. p. 110. ISBN 031219904X. 
  5. Saxon, Wolfgang (February 15, 1984). "George P. Brett is dead at 91; Headed Macmillan Company". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-04-19. 
  6. Jack London (1943) - Full cast and crew
  7. "Holtzbrinck shows Macmillan sales rise" Bookseller. February 23, 2001.


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