Galbraith, John Kenneth (1908–2006) Raised in Toronto, Galbraith did his advanced work in economics in the United States and served as an adviser to President John F. Kennedy as well as his ambassador to India from 1961 to 1963. Galbraith challenged conventional economic wisdom by calling for less consumer spending and more spending on government programs. His policies shaped the Democratic agenda of JFK and Lyndon Johnson and contributed to the modern concept of the American welfare state.
Gallatin, Albert (1761–1849) Born in Switzerland, Gallitin immigrated to the United States when he was 19. He was a vigorous anti-Federalist and ally of Thomas Jefferson, who appointed him the nation’s fourth secretary of the Treasury. Gallatin introduced a new simplicity in government, which drastically reduced the public debt. He was instrumental in implementing Jefferson’s ideal of a minimized federal administration.
Gallaudet, Thomas (1787–1851) Gallaudet founded the first American school for the deaf in the belief that persons with this disability could be fully educated and had a right to such an education. After graduating from Yale in 1805, Gallaudet studied institutions for the deaf in Europe, then returned to the United States in 1816 and founded the American Asylum for Deaf Mutes at Hartford, Connecticut, obtaining for this a land grant from the U.S. Congress—the first instance of federal aid to the disabled. Gallaudet’s school became the nation’s principal training center for instructors of the deaf. Gallaudet’s 1825 Plan of a Seminary for the Education of Instructors of Youth included a proposal for the special education of the disabled and for the professional training of teachers of all types of students. In 1856, Amos Kendall founded a small school for the deaf and the blind in Washington, D.C.; later headed by Gallaudet’s son, it was named Gallaudet College in 1893 to honor Thomas Gallaudet. It is now Gallaudet University.
Galloway, Joseph (1731–1803) In 1774, this distinguished Philadelphia attorney introduced the Galloway Plan, which proposed a union between the discontented American colonies and Britain. The plan provided for greatly expanded home rule, including a colonial president general (appointed by the king) and a locally voted colonial legislature, which would function in the manner of the House of Commons. The Continental Congress debated the plan for a single day, then rejected it by a single vote. This narrow rejection was a major step toward revolution.
Gallup, George (1901–1984) Gallup was a journalism professor, who, in 1932, was hired by an advertising firm to conduct public-opinion surveys on behalf of its clients. This led to his developing a system of public opinion survey, the “Gallup Poll,” which had a profound impact on corporate marketing and political campaigning. Gallup founded the American Institute of Public Opinion (1935), the British Institute of Public Opinion (1936), and the Audience Research Institute, Inc. (1939).
Gardner, John (1933–1982) A respected university professor and poet, Gardner’s enduring literary reputation rests largely on a single work, Grendel (1971), which retold the Old English story of Beowulf—from the point of view of the monster, whose situation, perceptions, and emotions are remarkably and profoundly human.
Garfield, James A. (1831–1881) Garfield, who served with distinction in the Union army during the Civil War, was an Ohio representative and Senator before he was elected president in 1880. Inaugurated on March 4, 1881, he was shot in the back on July 2, 1881, by a disgruntled office seeker, Charles J, Guiteau. Garfield lingered until September 19, 1881. His long incapacity raised critical constitutional questions concerning the circumstances under which the vice president should assume the role of the chief executive.
Garland, Hamlin (1860–1940) Garland was born on a Wisconsin farm and moved with his family to Iowa and then the Dakotas. As an adult, he embodied his experiences in autobiographical novels and short stories that chronicle the hardships—both physical and economic—of pioneer life. His masterpiece is Main-Travelled Roads of 1891.
Garrett, Pat (1850–1908) Garrett was born in Alabama and settled in Texas and New Mexico, where he worked as a cowboy and buffalo hunter before becoming deputy sheriff then sheriff of Lincoln County, New Mexico. His fame rests solely on his having tracked and shot down the legendary outlaw Billy the Kid at Fort Sumner, New Mexico, on July 14, 1881.
Garrison, William Lloyd (1805–1879) In 1831, Garrison started publishing The Liberator, which emerged as the most radical of American abolitionist journals. In its pages, Garrison called for an immediate, unconditional end to slavery, and in 1832 founded the New England Anti Slavery Society, also becoming the following year a founding member of the American Anti Slavery Society. Uncompromising in his views, Garrison in 1844 called for the peaceful secession of the free northern states from the states of the slaveholding South.
Garvey, Marcus (1887–1940) Born in Jamaica, Garvey, mostly self-taught, traveled in Central America, lived in London from 1912 to 1914, then returned to Jamaica, where, with others, he founded the Universal Negro Improvement and Conservation Association and African Communities League, or Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA). The principal goal of the organization was to create, in Africa, an independent black governed nation. Meeting with little success in Jamaica, Garvey brought the UNIA to the United States in 1916, establishing branches in New York’s Harlem and black neighborhoods in other northern cities. Between 1919 and 1926, when he was jailed for mail fraud, Garvey was hailed as the “Black Moses” for having awakened the African-American community to the possibilities of self-determination.
Gary, Elbert (1846–1927) A powerful corporate attorney and noted jurist, Elbert Gary was elected chairman of U.S. Steel after its merger with Federal Steel in 1901. For the next 26 years, he presided over the enormous growth of the steel industry and was the personification of a captain of American industry. When U.S. Steel created a company town around its principal mills in Indiana in 1906, it named it Gary, after the chairman.
Gates, Bill (1955– ) Gates founded a company—Microsoft—that developed and controlled the most important operating systems of the emerging personal computer (PC). With MS DOS (Microsoft Disk-Operating System) and, later, Windows, Microsoft held the software keys to the personal computer. This made Gates one of the wealthiest men in the world (at times, the wealthiest) and simultaneously one of the world’s most admired, envied, and sometimes hated business titans. In 2000, Gates and his wife, Melinda, established the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which rapidly became the richest philanthropic organization in the world—and attracted in 2006 the largest single philanthropic gift ever made, $30.7 billion in stock from Warren Buffet, which more than doubled the foundation’s already spectacular $29 billion endowment.
Gates, Daryl (1926– ) As chief of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) from 1978 until 1992, Gates introduced law enforcement innovations of national significance, including the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) and Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums (CRASH) programs and, most important of all, the SWAT (Special Weapons And Tactics) concept. His hard-charging leadership style, however, was often viewed as excessive, and his paramilitary approach to policing was seen by some as brutal and inappropriate. Most serious were charges of institutionalized racism within the LAPD. His controversial police career ended in 1992, after he seemingly failed to take necessary steps to quell the worst race riots in Los Angeles history. Gates’s embattled career dramatized many of the challenges of law enforcement in modern America.
Gatling, Richard Jordan (1818–1903) About 1862, this American inventor developed the Gatling gun, the direct precursor of the modern machine gun. For better or worse, it was a major step in the efficiency of infantry weapons and—especially in its later development as the machine gun—would have a profound effect on modern warfare.
Genêt, Charles Edmond (1763–1834) Sent by revolutionary France as an emissary to the United States, Genêt sidestepped President Washington and the U.S. government by conspiring to involve American citizens directly in France’s ongoing war against Britain. This strained Anglo-American relations and set the stage for a major crisis in Franco-American relations. But it also successfully tested President Washington’s determination to uphold and defend United States sovereignty.
Genovese, Vito (1897–1969) After immigrating to the United States from Naples in 1913, Genovese became active in New York gangs, rose to control those gangs, then fled to Italy in 1937 to avoid U.S. prosecution. He became an illicit financier of Benito Mussolini and smuggled narcotics into the United States. Returned to the States after World War II, he again rose to prominence as organized crime’s “boss of all the bosses” in the New York area. Convicted on smuggling and narcotics charges in 1959, he was imprisoned, but continued to rule the underworld from his cell. His reign was finally ended by a fatal heart attack, while still in custody.
George, Henry (1839–1897) In 1879, George published Progress and Poverty, in which he proposed the so-called single tax. Government, he wrote, should be financed by a state tax on “economic rent”—the income from the use of the bare land, not any improvements on that land—and all other taxes should be abolished. The idea took fire as the country struggled to recover from the major panic and depression of 1873–1878, and George became a celebrity. His ideas continue to serve as the basis for many ambitious tax reform schemes.
Geronimo (1829–1909) Geronimo, whose Indian name was Goyathlay (“One who yawns”), led his band, the Chiricahua Apaches, in a highly effective guerrilla resistance to reservation confinement. Geronimo was the last great leader of the Apaches, who had resisted white colonization of their homeland since the days of the Spanish conquistadors. Geronimo led raids and resistance from the early 1860s until his final surrender in 1886. His name was memorialized by U.S. paratroops in World War II, who used “Geronimo!” as their jump cry.
Gerry, Elbridge (1744–1814) A signer of the Declaration of Independence, Gerry was vice president during the second term of James Madison. His name is memorialized in the term “gerrymandering”—dividing electoral districts for partisan political advantage—a practice first associated with Gerry’s administration as governor of Massachusetts (1810–1812).
Gershwin, George (1898–1937) Born in Brooklyn, Gershwin was one of the most important of all popular American composers. He wrote highly successful Broadway musicals, which included some of the most beautiful of American popular songs (many with lyrics by brother Ira), and also major orchestral compositions, the most famous of which is Rhapsody in Blue, which successfully combines elements of the classical piano concerto with 1920s jazz. He called his 1935 Porgy and Bess an “American folk opera.” Filled with beautiful music, it featured an all African-American cast.
Gershwin, Ira (1896–1983) Born in Brooklyn, Ira Gershwin became most famous as the lyricist who collaborated with his composer brother, George, on more than 20 Broadway musicals. After George Gershwin’s death in 1937, Ira served as lyricist to such greats as Kurt Weill, Jerome Kern, Harry Warren, and Harold Arlen. Witty, lyrical master of the American colloquial idiom, Gershwin was among the very greatest of popular lyricists.
Getty, J. Paul (1892–1976) Getty owned a controlling interest in the Getty Oil Company and in hundreds of other firms. He was celebrated for his eccentricity—an extravagant, irascible, and unsettled character who married and divorced five times—and for his fabulous art collection, which became the basis of the J. Paul Getty Museum, built at Malibu in 1953, expanded in 1974, then transformed in 1997 into the spectacular Getty Center, which houses the art collection and other philanthropic activities.
Giancana, Sam (1908–1975) Giancana was Chicago’s top syndicate boss from 1957 to 1966, and was reputedly tapped by John F. Kennedy’s father, Joseph P. Kennedy, to exert his influence among labor unions to swing the 1960 election in favor of JFK. In 1975, Giancana was gunned down in his Oak Park (Illinois) home by unknown assailants shortly before he was scheduled to appear before the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee to testify concerning his alleged involvement in a CIA plot to assassinate Cuba’s Fidel Castro in the early 1960s.
Gilbreth, Frank and Lillian (1868–1924 and 1878–1972) Frank Gilbreth was trained as an engineer and his wife, Lillian (née Moller) as a literary scholar. Together, they pioneered the science of time-motion study, the analysis of the motions and the amount of time required to carry out specific industrial tasks. Their 1911 Motion Study was groundbreaking and made them the world’s first consulting “efficiency experts.” The Gilbreths raised 12 children, two of whom, Frank Bunker Gilbreth, Jr., and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, described how their parents applied their efficiency methods to family rearing in the popular 1949 memoir Cheaper by the Dozen, which became a hit film the following year.
Gillespie, Dizzy (1917–1993) John Birks Gillespie—called Dizzy—was a jazz trumpet virtuoso, bandleader, and innovative composer who developed bebop—or bop—out of big band swing popular in the 1930s and 1940s. The new style was greatly accelerated and made use of often wild chord progressions and syncopated rhythms so rapid that only a virtuoso could play them. Bebop—whose heyday extended from the mid 1940s to the early 1960s—was the sound of modern jazz.
Gilman, Charlotte Perkins (1860–1935) In fiction and nonfiction, Gilman critically analyzed the role of women in American society at the turn of the 19th century and concluded that they were generally oppressed emotionally, intellectually, culturally, and economically. Her 1898 Women and Economics was a manifesto calling for the economic liberation of women, including from the unreasonable demands of everything from time-worn social convention to motherhood itself. Her radical feminism was rediscovered in the 1960s at the height of the modern women’s movement.
Gingrich, Newt (1943– ) Speaker of the House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999, Gingrich was associated with the Republican “Contract with America,” which addressed such issues as welfare reform, term limits, tougher crime laws, and a balanced budget law, and which helped conservative Republicans gain 54 House seats and take control of the House for the first time since 1954. For a time, Gingrich, wholly identified with the new conservative agenda, was the most powerful Speaker in recent history, but his decline was as precipitous as his rise, and he lost the Speakership amid ethics questions and after the poor Republican showing of 1998.
Ginsberg, Allen (1926–1997) Ginsberg grew up in Paterson, New Jersey, the son of noted poet Louis Ginsberg. Influenced less by his father than by the likes of William Carlos Williams—an exponent of free verse and narrative poetry in a lyric vernacular—and Walt Whitman, Ginsberg created a new form of free verse, wild, ecstatic, angry, and richly inventive, in his modern autobiographical epic Howl of 1956, which is considered one of the central poems of the so-called Beat movement in American literature.
Gist, Christopher (1706–1759) Gist was a trader, frontiersman, and explorer based in western Maryland and highly regarded by colonial authorities as a wilderness guide and an interpreter/negotiator influential with the Indians. In 1753, he joined George Washington, at the time a colonel of the Virginia militia, in an expedition against French “invaders” of the Ohio Valley, which was claimed by the English. Gist was an invaluable mentor to Washington in the ways of the frontier and in Indian diplomacy.
Giuliani, Rudolph (1944– ) Giuliani was an attorney who, as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York (appointed in 1983), earned a reputation as a tough, savvy prosecutor. He ran for mayor of New York in 1989, was defeated, but emerged victorious in 1993, the first Republican mayor of the city in twenty years. He pledged major reforms of the city’s finances and law enforcement, and he presided over a period of financial recovery and substantially reduced crime. Although some objected to what they regarded as his authoritarian manner, most New Yorkers—and most of the nation—were greatly impressed by Giuliani’s strong, efficient, and compassionate leadership during the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and afterward.
Glasgow, Ellen (1873–1945) A lifelong resident of Richmond, Virginia, Glasgow had a long career as a novelist, in which she chronicled life in the American South as it made its uneasy transition from the traditions of the 19th century to the demands of the 20th. Her The Romantic Comedians (1926), They Stooped to Folly (1929), and The Sheltered Life (1932) are extraordinary chronicles of the slow decay of Southern aristocracy in a modern industrial civilization. Her final novel, In This Our Life (1941), was awarded a Pulitzer Prize.
Glenn, John (1921– ) A Marine Corps aviator, Glenn was one of the seven original Mercury astronauts and the first American to orbit the earth (February 20, 1962). Glenn was elected to the U.S. Senate from Ohio in 1974 and was reelected three times. At 77, on October 29, 1998, he returned to space as a “payload specialist” aboard the shuttle Discovery, thereby becoming the oldest person ever to travel in space.
Godkin, E. L. (1831–1902) Born in Belfast, Ireland, Godkin came to the United States in 1851, practiced law in New York City, and in 1865 founded The Nation, which became the leading political review in the United States and was highly influential in bringing about all manner of major political reform.
Goethals, George Washington (1858–1928) A U.S. Army engineer, Goethals directed construction of the Panama Canal from 1907 until its opening in 1914, when Goethals became the first governor of the U.S. Canal Zone.
Goldman, Emma (1869–1940) Goldman immigrated to the United States from her native Russia (where she had been a radical activist) in 1885 and became active in socialism, but increasingly gravitated toward anarchism. She was arrested and imprisoned on several occasions and in 1906 founded an anarchist periodical, Mother Earth, which she published until the U.S. government suppressed it in 1917. Jailed during World War I for her activities in opposition to the war, she was deported to the Soviet Union as a Communist in 1919. She was appalled by the effects of the Russian Revolutions, but continued to espouse anarchism. Her autobiography, Living My Life (1931), is a classic of political dissent.
Goldwater, Barry (1909–1998) Republican U.S. senator from Arizona (1953–1964 and 1969–1987), Goldwater lost the presidential contest to Democrat Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964. Goldwater was the embodiment of hardline conservatism in a time of emerging liberalism.
Gompers, Samuel (1850–1924) A pioneering American labor leader, Gompers was the first president of the American Federation of Labor in 1886. Having arrived as an immigrant from England in 1863, he settled in New York, where he worked as a cigar maker. Naturalized in 1872, Gompers took the national organization of cigar makers out of the Knights of Labor and made it the basis of the AFL. He served as the president of the federation from 1886 to 1924 (except for 1895).
Goodman, Andrew (1943–1964) With fellow Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) volunteers Michael Schwerner and James Chaney, Goodman was murdered on June 21, 1964, on a back road in Mississippi while working for CORE’s Mississippi Summer Project to register black voters in the segregated South. A white Manhattan native, Goodman was driven by a passion for social justice.
Goodman, Benny (1909–1986) Bandleader and jazz clarinet virtuoso, Goodman was a master of swing—the musical sound of the 1930s and 1940s, featuring fast, syncopated rhythms that were meant to be danced to. Goodman’s band featured a who’s who of American jazz, including guitarist Charlie Christian, trumpeter Harry James, drummer Gene Krupa, vibraphonist Lionel Hampton, and pianist Teddy Wilson. Some of Goodman’s most memorable tunes were arranged by orchestration genius Fletcher Henderson.
Goodnight, Charlie (1836–1929) A Confederate veteran, Goodnight returned to Texas after the Civil War, rounded up and branded as much free-ranging cattle as he could, and in 1866, with partner Oliver Loving, drove 2,000 longhorns from Belknap, Texas, to Fort Sumner, New Mexico, to feed U.S. Army troops there. It was a hot, dry distance of some 500 miles, and the partners lost 400 head on the trail—300 from thirst, another 100 trampled to death when they finally reached the watering hole—but they were paid the spectacular sum of eight cents a pound for the stringy meat, netting a profit of $12,000. The Goodnight-Loving Trail they blazed became one of the most heavily trafficked routes in the Southwest, was the foundation of the trail-drive industry, and gave employment to the most celebrated and beloved worker in American industry, the cowboy.
Gore, Al (1948– ) Gore was vice president under Bill Clinton (1993–2001) and, before that, a Tennessee representative and senator. In 2000, he out-tallied Republican George W. Bush in the popular vote for president of the United States, but in a hotly disputed election affected by a Supreme Court ruling, he was defeated in the Electoral College. A longtime champion of environmental causes, Gore emerged in the first decade of the 21st century with a mission to raise the awareness of the dangers posed by global warming.
Gorgas, William (1854–1920) A U.S. Army surgeon, Gorgas was responsible for health and sanitation in Havana during the period of the Spanish-American War. Confronted by endemic yellow fever, he proved by experiment that the disease was transmitted by the bite of a certain mosquito. By taking measures to control the mosquito population, he eliminated yellow fever from Havana, then was sent in 1904 to Panama, where the disease was defeating efforts to build the Panama Canal. Gorgas not only eradicated yellow fever from the Canal Zone, he also drastically reduced the prevalence of another mosquito-borne endemic disease, malaria.
Gorky, Arshile (1904–1948) Born Vosdanik Adoian in Armenia, Gorky took his pseudonym from the Russian word for “bitter,” which was also the pseudonym of a writer he much admired, Maxim Gorky. The name reflected the horrors of his childhood during the Turkish genocide of Armenia—a fate he narrowly escaped by immigrating to the United States. Here he developed a dashing, dramatic style that built on the surrealist tradition and laid the foundation for abstract expressionism. Gorky thus emerged as one of the great pivotal figures in American art.
Grady, Henry (1850–1889) A journalist, Grady bought a quarter interest in The Atlanta Constitution newspaper in 1879, which he used as a platform from which he promoted the industrialization and modernization of the South. His work on the newspaper and as a popular orator helped transform the South, defeated and economically depressed following the Civil War, into fertile ground for new industrial investment and development.
Graham, Billy (1918– ) Graham was ordained as a Southern Baptist minister in 1939 and, after World War II, began preaching fundamentalist sermons on radio. By 1950, he was nationally famous. Eminently telegenic, he appeared on TV as that medium developed, and also toured the country in revival crusades. Immensely popular, he also had the ear of every U.S. president since Harry S. Truman.
Graham, Martha (1894–1991) Graham was a driving force in American modern dance for half a century, creating a new style of expressive choreography with works “designed to reveal the inner man” by expressing primal emotion and the spiritual and emotional essence of what it is to be human. Her work was sometimes based on Greek myth and drama, but was also rooted in America, as in her collaboration with the great American composer Aaron Copland on the ballet Appalachian Spring (1944), perhaps her most famous work.
Grant, Ulysses S. (1822–1885) Grant failed at every enterprise he attempted except soldiering. After winning victories in the western theater of the Civil War, he was promoted by Abraham Lincoln to general-in-chief of the Union Army, which he led to a costly victory in the Civil War. Hailed by many as a bold leader and great strategist, he was condemned by some as a “butcher,” a man always willing to spill the blood of others. Grant was elected president of the United States in 1868 and served two terms (1869–1877), his administration notorious for its corruption—although he himself was regarded as a scrupulously honest man. After leaving the White House, Grant failed in business and was on the verge of abject poverty when Mark Twain, who had a controlling interest in a publishing company, offered him a fortune for his memoirs. The result was a masterpiece of autobiography and history, completed just four days before Grant succumbed to cancer of the throat.
Greeley, Horace (1811–1872) Greeley raised himself from Vermont printer’s apprentice to founder in 1841 of the New York Tribune, which became the liberal voice of abolitionism, woman suffrage, and general political reform. Greeley set a high journalistic standard in news-gathering and public-spirited moral purpose. He was the original American “crusading journalist.”
Greenhow, Rose O’Neal (1815–1864) The widow of a prominent physician and historian, Rose O’Neal Greenhow was a popular Washington, D.C., hostess who was connected at the very highest levels of government. A Maryland native, her sympathies were wholly with the South during the Civil War, and she used her social position and considerable sexual allure to obtain important military intelligence that proved especially valuable in the First Battle of Bull Run. In August 1863, she traveled to Europe as an unofficial agent of the Confederacy, obtained funding for the Confederate cause there, but was drowned on October 1, 1864, weighed down by gold coins sewn into her clothing, after her boat sank off Wilmington, North Carolina, while she was attempting to evade a Union naval blockade.
Greenough, Horatio (1805–1852) Greenough contributed two things to American art and culture. The first was his monumental neoclassical sculpture of George Washington—the first work of art commissioned by the federal government (1832)—which is now at the National Museum of Art in Washington, D.C. The second was his groundbreaking writing on aesthetic theory, in which he set out the relationship between architecture and decoration, proposing that “form follows function.” Although articulated before the mid 19th century, this became the basis of Functionalism, the ideal on which so much modern architecture and industrial design is based.
Gregory, Dick (1932– ) Born Richard Claxton in St. Louis, Gregory rose from the ghetto to become a nationally successful comic in the 1960s, who delivered biting satire targeted against racial prejudice. His comedy added a new dimension to the Civil Rights movement, raising the consciousness of black as well as white Americans. By the 1980s, Gregory had left the comic stage and became an entrepreneur in the field of nutrition.
Griffith, D. W. (1875–1948) Often judged the first great genius of American film direction, Griffith pioneered many of the staple techniques of modern film making, including the use of dramatic camera angles, camera movement, lighting effects, and, most of all, effective pacing and storytelling through skillful editing. His masterpiece, the 1915 epic Birth of a Nation, was both praised for its ambition and artistry and condemned for its racist vision of the Civil War and its aftermath.
Grimké, Sarah and Angelina (1792–1873 and 1805–1879) The Grimké sisters were born in South Carolina and knew the evils of slavery first hand. They left the South, settled in Philadelphia, became Quakers, and worked with abolitionist leader William Lloyd Garrison in the campaign against slavery. Angelina Grimké wrote an Appeal to the Christian Women of the South in 1836, urging southern women to help persuade their men to end slavery. Soon after, Sarah Grimké wrote An Epistle to the Clergy of the Southern States. The sisters lectured nationwide and attempted to unite the cause of women’s rights with the struggle against slavery.
Grinnell, George Bird (1849–1938) In its obituary, The New York Times called Grinnell the “father of American conservation.” Born in Brooklyn and educated at Yale (from which he earned a Ph.D. in paleontology), he served as a naturalist on a number of western expeditions and was the natural history editor, then publisher-owner, of Field and Stream, which he used to conduct a series of pioneering conservation campaigns that promoted the protection of Yellowstone National Park and moved Congress to create Glacier National Park. Grinnell founded the first Audubon Society and was a founder (with Theodore Roosevelt and others) of the Boone and Crockett Club. Grinnell was also a renowned student and historian of the Plains Indians.
Grosvenor, Gilbert H. (1875–1966) Hired by Alexander Graham Bell as an editorial assistant on the magazine of the National Geographic Society (of which Bell was president), Grosvenor became its editor, transforming it from a modest scholarly journal (circulation 900) into a popular illustrated magazine that reached some 2,000,000 subscribers. Elected president of the Society in 1920, Grosvenor was responsible for mounting many major geographical expeditions throughout the world. The National Geographic Society and its magazine became celebrated American institutions.
Groves, Leslie R. (1896–1970) Groves was an officer in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. In 1940, he was put in charge of building the Pentagon, at the time the largest office building in the world. His next major assignment was as military director of the Manhattan Project, which researched, designed, and built the atomic bombs that ended World War II.
Guthrie, Woody (1912–1967) Guthrie traveled the country by freight train during the Great Depression, composing and singing folksongs that gave lyric voice to the lives of the economically downtrodden and dispossessed and that also expressed the somewhat sentimentalized ideals of American labor and populism. Best known among his more than 1,000 songs was “This Land Is Your Land,” which became an anthem of the Civil Rights movement during the 1960s. Guthrie was a major influence on the folk music revival of the 1960s, on Bob Dylan in particular, and on American popular music generally.