The first Philadelphia amateur press club was formed in 1872 with
G. Heidel Louden as president. Its life was short. In 1876
another club was formed for the purpose of founding the present
NAPA. Its story is told earlier in this book. Later that year a
Quaker Amateur Press Association was organized locally and in 1877
a rival Keystone APA was started with moderate success. Both were
reorganized in 1881 and Frank Vondersmith was elected president of
the Keystone group and was succeeded by James M. Beck. There was
another reorganization in 1882 with John W. McLain as president
and Sam Stinson as editor. These clubs had short lives.
A new Philadelphia Amateur journalists group was formed in 1885
with Harry Hochstadter as the president. He was succeeded by
Porter F. Cope and Walter C. Chiles. This club disbanded in 1891.
In 1897 the Quaker City APA was again formed with monthly meetings,
but the Spanish-American War took away its active members. It
reorganized again in 1898 and continued for many years. On its
fifth anniversary. J. Ray Spink was named president. At the end
of seven years it reported having held 131 meetings. Charles H.
Russell was then president and Will Murphy secretary.
G. Heidel Louden was one of the pioneers of amateur journalism in
Philadelphia, although there is no record of his attendance at the
founding of the NAPA. He began publishing the
in 1870, the same year W. H. Waters started
The Boys' Gazette.
During the ensuing decade Philadelphia was the home of many amateur
journals. George Bertron issued
and Evan Reed Riale, prominent in the National's formation, published
and later the
Other Philadelphia amateur journals during the legendary year of
by James M. Beck;
The Tidal Wave,
Lavernus S. Kerr;
William J. Eldridge;
The Literary World
J. C. Worthington;
Charles T. Semper; and,
Our Mutual Friend,
R. Howard Taylor.