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Dodd, Mead & Company

Dodd Mead and Company (1839 until 1990)

Dodd, Mead & Company was a family publishing business. They published religious books primarily until Moses Dodd retired in 1870, then branched out to other areas.

Company timeline details:

1.     1839 – "Taylor and Dodd"– Moses W. Dodd went into business with John S. Taylor.

2.     1840–1870 – "M. W. Dodd"– Moses W. Dodd ran the business.

3.     1870–1876 – "Dodd and Mead" – Son Frank H. Dodd ran the company with Edward S. Mead.

4.     1876 – Dodd, Mead and Company" - Bleecker Van Wagenen joined the company.

5.     1916 – Frank Dodd died and son Edward H. Dodd succeeded him as president.

6.     1924 – Dodd, Mead & Company purchase Moffat, Yard & Co.

7.     1981 – Dodd, Mead & Company became a subsidiary of Thomas Nelson.

8.     1988 – Dodd, Mead & Company are sold to Putnam Berkley Group.

9.     1990 – Dodd, Mead & Company ceased operations.


Moses Woodruff Dodd (1813–1899)—Moses W. Dodd was the son of Ira Dodd (1786–1869) and Anna Harrison (1785–1867). Ira Dodd was a superintendent in the railroad business. Moses was the founder of the M. W. Dodd publishing house. He was born in Bloomfield, New Jersey and graduated from Princeton in 1837. He held strong Christian convictions and attended Princeton Theological Seminary for two years but dropped out because of poor health. He decided to enter publishing instead and his company M. W. Dodd published many religious and theological books. He had a store which was part of Brick Presbyterian Church, Newark, where Pastor Gardiner Spring was preaching. Mr. Dodd published books and sermons by the popular pastor. Moses was an elder for many years.

Rachel Hoe (1817–1897)—Moses Dodd married Rachel Hoe in 1841. Rachel was a sister to the Hoe brothers (Richard and Robert) who ran R. Hoe & Company, which made printing presses. It is Rachel's sister, Elizabeth, who married Enoch Mead, their son was Edward S. Mead.

Frank Howard Dodd (1844–1916—the son of Moses and Rachel Dodd, who joined the company in 1859, and took it over in 1870.

Martha Bliss Parker—Frank H. Dodd married Martha Parker in 1868, who was the daughter of Union Theological Seminary president Joel Parker.

Edward Spencer Mead (1847–1894—When Moses retired in 1870, Edward Mead and cousin Frank H. Dodd ran the company, Dodd and Mead. Edward was also a writer under the pen name of Richard Markham. He married Susan Abbott, who was the daughter of Rev. John S. C. Abbott.

Bleecker Van Wagenen—a friend who brought needed capital to the company.

Edward H. DoddMoses' grandson and son of Frank Dodd, who took over the company in 1916. 

Major publications and authors of the publishing company:

  • Books of Pastor Gardiner Spring.
  • Alexander Cruden's Concordance of the Bible.
  • Books of Charlotte Elizabeth.
  • Books of Mrs. Charles.
  • Martha Finley's Elsie Dinsmore.
  • Authors Ian Maclaren, G. K. Chesterton, Agatha Chrisite, George Barnard Shaw.
  • New International Encyclopedia.

Extended Families:

Moses W. Dodd married Rachel Hoe and their children were:

  • Ira Seymour – Princeton Seminary graduate and pastor.
  • Frank Howard Dodd – who took over the company after his father's retirement.
  • Charles Townley Dodd
  • Robert Hoe Dodd –joined Dodd and Mead in 1889
  • William Mead Dodd
  • Edward Wilson Dodd

Robert Hoe (1784-1833) married Rachel Smith in 1805, and their children were:

  • Mary
  • Elizabeth—married Enoch Mead, had son Edward S. Mead.
  • Emeline
  • Richard—worked for R. Hoe & Company.
  • Robert—worked for R. Hoe & Company.
  • Rachel—married Moses Dodd.
  • Harriet
  • Peter
  • Theodosia


Comparato, Frank E. Chronicles of Genius and Folly: R. Hoe & Company and the Printing Press As a Service to Democracy.  Culver City: Labyrinthos, 1979.

Dodd, Edward H. Jr. The First Hundred Years: a History of the House of Dodd, Mead, 1839–1939. New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1939.

Princeton University, Princeton University Bulletin. 9-13, Princeton: The Princeton University Press, 1901. 


Hesba Stretton's chosen American publisher:

It is my wish that Messrs. Dodd & Mead alone should publish this Story in the United States and I appeal to the generosity and courtesy of other Publishers to allow me to gain some benefit from my work on the American as well as the English side of the Atlantic.—HESBA STRETTON.