George Canning Hill, author and journalist, son of George Hill and his wife, Hannah Dunham, was born in Norwich, Connecticut, February 10, 1825. He entered Yale College and was graduated with the degree of B.A. in 1845. For about eight months afterwards he taught in a private school in his home town, then studied law in his father's office.
In 1846 he married Martha M. Lyon, of Chaplin, Connecticut, and removed to Lowndesboro, Alabama, where for a short time he was principal of an academy, and at the same time was admitted to the bar of that state. He shortly afterwards returned to Connecticut and became editor of the Hartford Courant for one year. The next few years were spent in Chaplin (he was there as early as 1851) where he went for his health and where he was engaged in writing. At the same time he was admitted to the Connecticut bar. During this period he was writing for Gleason's Pictorial (1852), and also published his "Cap Sheaf," under the pseudonym "Lewis Myrtle" (1853), and "Dovecote; or, The Heart of the Homestead" (1854).
In 1856 he became manager of the newly started Boston Daily Ledger, and remained with it until it was consolidated with the Boston Herald four years later. In 1858 his "New American Biographical Series for Youth; containing the Lives of Captain John Smith, General Israel Putnam, Benedict Arnold, and Daniel Boone," appeared in four volumes. The next years were spent in literary work. In February, 1865, he became Associate Editor of the Boston Post, and in the same year his "Benjamin Franklin, a Biography," was issued. He remained with the Post for fifteen years, the last two as Editor-in-Chief. On the first of January, 1880, he resigned and again returned to literature. From 1890 until 1897 he was Literary Editor of the Boston Courier. "Homespun; or, Five and Twenty Years Ago" under the pseudonym "Thomas Lackland," appeared in 1867, and "Our Parish; or, Pen-Paintings of Village Life," in 187-.
On November 14, 1898, he was overcome by a sudden heart attack in the street in Boston, and died a few hours later at the City Hospital. He was buried in Weston, Massachusetts. His wife had died a few years before him. They had no children.
REFERENCES: Boston City Directories, 1857 to 1897; The Fourth Estate, New York, X, November 17, 1898, 5; The Editor, Franklin, Ohio, VI, 372; The Journalist, XII, January 13, 1894, 12; Arena, XVI, August, 1896, 529 (portrait in old age but no biography); Allibone, Dict. Eng. Lit., I, 846, Supplement, II, 822; Oscar Fay Adams, A Dictionary of American Authors, Boston, 1905, 185 (a few lines only); Obituary Record of Graduates of Yale University, Deceased from June, 1890, to June, 1900, New Hiven, 1900, 602-603; Catalogue of Officers and Graduates of Yale University, 1701 to 1924, 178; Boston Evening Transcript, November 14, 1898, 9.
Irwin's American Novels. No. 26