Pierce, Lorne Albert

Lorne Albert Pierce, publisher, editor, writer (b at Delta, Ont 3 Aug 1890: d at Toronto 27 Nov 1961). Editor in chief of RYERSON PRESS 1922-60, Pierce championed Canadian writers and writing for over 40 years. He attended Queen's; Victoria College, Toronto; Union Theological Seminary, NY; New York University; and United Theological College, Montréal. He was ordained a Methodist minister in 1916. Pastoral work, in Ottawa and elsewhere, and wartime army service preceded his association with Ryerson Press in 1920, briefly as literary adviser, then as editor. Pierce typified the enthusiastic nationalism of English Canada in the 1920s: he launched the important Ryerson Chapbook poetry series, the pioneering Makers of Canadian Literature volumes of criticism, and the textbook series, The Ryerson Books of Prose and Verse.

Pierce's own writings include studies of William KIRBY and Marjorie Pickthall, a critique and an anthology of Canadian literature, and editions of the poetry of Pickthall and Bliss CARMAN. In 1926 he established the Lorne Pierce Medal of the RSC for literary achievement and in 1927 the Edith and Lorne Pierce Collection of Canadian Literature at Queen's. He was prominent in the Canadian Authors' Association, the Canadian Bibliographical Society, the Canadian Writers' Foundation, the ROYAL ONTARIO MUSEUM and the Art Gallery of Toronto (ART GALLERY OF ONTARIO). In 1940 Pierce was a founder of what became the Canadian Hearing Society, a by-product of his own deafness.