The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Frederick Orridge Macmillan, 1851-1936

Nationality: British
Date of Birth: 1851
Place of Birth:
Date of Death: 1936
Place of Death:


Sir Frederick Orridge Macmillan was a publisher. He was the eldest son of Daniel Macmillan, a founding partner in the bookselling and publishing firm of Macmillan & Co., and his wife Frances, the only daughter of Charles Orridge, a Cambridge chemist. In 1874 he married Georgiana Elizabeth, the daughter of Thomas Warrin of Newtown, Long Island. They had no children and Macmillan was succeeded in his business by the sons of his brother, Maurice Macmillan.


In 1876 Macmillan became a partner in his family's publishing firm in Bedford Street, London. He had first hand experience in all aspects of the business: printing, bookselling and publishing. He took a particular interest in the New York branch of the business, which in 1890 became an independent firm, Macmillan Company. He built up a world-wide business, with branches in Canada, Australia and India. He was friends with many of distinguished authors and artists, including JW.

Macmillan was among those invited by JW to the private view of the Royal Society of British Artists' 1887-88 winter exhibition (#13403). He was also invited to a dinner on 1 May 1889 at the Criterion in Piccadilly organised by William Christian Symons to congratulate JW on being made an honorary member of the Royal Academy in Munich (#05636).

Macmillan was prominent in the establishment of the 'net book agreement' in 1890. From 1900 to 1902 and 1911 to 1913 he was President of the Publishers Association, he was involved in framing the Copyright Act of 1911 and served on the Royal Commission on Paper in 1916. He was a trustee of the Booksellers' Provident Institution, and was knighted in 1909. He was appointed C.V.O. in 1928.


Morgan, Charles, The House of Macmillan, 1843-1943, London, 1943; Unwin, Stanley, 'Sir Frederick Orridge Macmillan', 1949, Dictionary of National Biography Online, Oxford, 1997 (accessed 4 October 2003).