Curtis, Charles, 1860–1936, Vice President of the United States (1929–33), b. near North Topeka, Kans. Of part Native American background, Curtis lived for three years on a Kaw reservation. After studying law with a Topeka attorney, he was admitted to the bar (1881) and entered Republican politics in Kansas. He served in the U.S. Congress (1892–1906), where he championed Native American rights to self-government with the Curtis Act (1898). He served in the U.S. Senate from 1907 to 1913 and from 1915 to 1929. He was a fiscal conservative and generally supported farm and veterans' benefits. After an unsuccessful bid for the Republican presidential nomination, he became Herbert Hoover's running mate in 1928. Once elected, he played little part in the administration, but in 1932 he again ran with Hoover in his unsuccessful try for a second term.
See biography by M. Ewy (1961).
Curtis, Cyrus Hermann Kotzschmar
Curtis, Cyrus Hermann Kotzschmar, 1850–1933, American publisher and philanthropist, b. Portland, Maine. He started his first periodical, The People's Ledger, in Boston in 1872. Later, in Philadelphia he started a periodical called the Tribune and Farmer. The women's column of this paper was so successful that in 1883 it became The Ladies' Home Journal; under the editorship of Curtis's son-in-law, Edward W. Bok, it soon became the most important magazine of its kind. Curtis founded (1890) the Curtis Publishing Company and in 1897 purchased the Saturday Evening Post, which, with his editor George Horace Lorimer, he built up to a position of eminence. Country Gentleman was bought in 1911. In 1913 he purchased the Philadelphia Public Ledger. This was the first of his newspaper ventures. Among others purchased were the Philadelphia Press (1920), the New York Evening Post (1924), and the Philadelphia Inquirer (1930). His newspapers were never as successful as his magazines, and he eventually had to sell three of them at a loss. Throughout his life, Curtis donated money to hospitals, museums, and schools.
See E. W. Bok, A Man from Maine (1923).
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Curtis, Charles(1860–1936) vice-president, U.S. representative; born in North Topeka, Kans. He claimed to be one-eighth American Indian and made much of this in his political career. He became Herbert Hoover's vice-president after 34 years in Congress. He supported the Republican policies even as the impact of the Great Depression became more evident.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.