Wilbur H. "Ping" Ferry (1910-1995) was a self-styled "town crank," an influential and iconoclastic figure who seemingly knew everyone worth knowing in the mid-twentieth century. Businessman, thinker, activist, government advisor, and philanthropist, Ping's career was as varied as his pronouncements. In Victor Navasky's words, his ultimate ...
Wilbur H. "Ping" Ferry (1910-1995) was a self-styled "town crank," an influential and iconoclastic figure who seemingly knew everyone worth knowing in the mid-twentieth century. Businessman, thinker, activist, government advisor, and philanthropist, Ping's career was as varied as his pronouncements. In Victor Navasky's words, his ultimate importance was "the impossible example he set for the rest of us."
illus. Near Fine/VG+ 238pp. P O name and address label on end paper and spine. Laid in is a copy of a letter from the prev owner of the book to James Ward, and the original letter from Ward in reply. Prev owner worked with Ferry, and was interviewed by Ward for the book. Ferry was a teacher of JFK, and was a member of the Johnson administration, among many other achievements.
Publishers Weekly, 2001-10-29 In this moderately successful biography, Ping Ferry (1910-1995) plays many roles: journalist, public relations executive, government administrator, public intellectual and philanthropist. Ferry was a born iconoclast something traceable to his complex relationship with his father. Ferry was everything his father was not: nonconformist, leftist in his politics and absolutely convinced that wealth should be used to improve the world. During the 1920s and '30s, Ferry roamed from job to job. He taught at Choate, where one of his students was John F. Kennedy. He worked as a reporter for the Manchester (N.H.) Union Leader and handled public relations for Eastern Airlines. During WWII, Ferry worked for the Office of Price Administration, which helped organize the wartime economy. After the war, he found the job that would change his life: public relations executive for Earl Newsom & Company. At Newsom, Ferry worked closely with the Ford Foundation, becoming involved with the disbursement of millions of dollars to a variety of causes, including civil rights and civil liberties. Ferry was a vocal critic of McCarthyism and a champion of the First Amendment. In 1954, he helped set up the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions and traveled the country, speaking out against nuclear weapons, big business and U.S. involvement in Vietnam. Ferry became increasingly militant on civil rights he even proposed the establishment of autonomous "black colonies" within the United States. During the 1970s and '80s, Ferry advocated unilateral nuclear disarmament. Ping Ferry left an important legacy in radical political circles, and this sympathetic biography unabashedly celebrates his life. (Nov.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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