Ellis Parker Butler
Biography of Ellis Parker Butler
Ellis Parker Butler was an American author.
Butler was born in Muscatine, Iowa. He was the author of more than 30 books and more than 2,000 stories and essays, and is most famous for his short story "Pigs is Pigs", in which a bureaucratic stationmaster insists on levying the livestock rate for a shipment of two pet guinea pigs, which soon start proliferating geometrically.
Working from his home in Flushing (Queens) New York, Butler was—by every measure and by many times—the most published author of the pulp fiction era. Amongst others he wrote twenty-five stories to Woman's Home Companion between 1906 and 1935. The stories in the Companion were illustrated by artists including May Wilson Preston, Frederic Dorr Steele, Herbert Paus and Rico Le Brun. Between 1931 and 1936, at least seventeen of Butler's stories published in newspapers were enhanced by noted illustrator Ethel Hays.
His career spanned more than forty years and his stories, poems and articles were published in more than 225 magazines. His work appeared alongside that of his contemporaries including Mark Twain, Sax Rohmer, James B. Hendryx, Berton Braley, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Don Marquis, Will Rogers and Edgar Rice Burroughs.
Despite the enormous volume of his work, Butler was, for most of his life, only a part-time author. He worked full-time as a banker and was very active in his local community. A founding member of both the Dutch Treat Club and the Author's League of America, Butler was an always-present force in the New York City literary scene.
He died in Williamsville, Massachusetts and was interred in Flushing Cemetery.
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Ellis Parker Butler Poems
She plucked a blossom fair to see; Upon my coat I let her pin it; And thus we stood beneath the tree A minute.
A Lost Angel
When first we met she seemed so white I feared her; As one might near a spirit bright
The Ballad Of A Bachelor
Listen, ladies, while I sing The ballad of John Henry King. John Henry was a bachelor,
Whene’er I feed the barnyard folk My gentle soul is vexed; My sensibilities are torn
A Scotchman Whose Name Was Isbister
A Scotchman whose name was Isbister Had a maiden giraffe he called 'sister' When she said 'Oh, be mine, Be my sweet Valentine!'
Why Washington Retreated
1775 Said Congress to George Washington: "To set this country free,
Good - Better - Best
When young, in tones quite positive I said, "The world shall see That I can keep myself from sin; A good man I will be."
O wonderful! In sport we climbed the tree, Eager and laughing, as in all our play, To see the eggs where, in the nest, they lay,
A Study In Feeling
To be a great musician you must be a man of moods, You have to be, to understand sonatas and etudes. To execute pianos and to fiddle with success,
The Golf Walk
Behold, my child, this touching scene, The golfer on the golfing-green; Pray mark his legs’ uncanny swing, The golf-walk is a gruesome thing!
Mary Had A Little Frog
Mary had a little frog And it was water-soaked, But Mary did not keep it long
Just as the sun was setting Back of the Western hills Grandfather stood by the window Eating the last of his pills.
A St. Valentine’s Day Tragedy
Oh! Montmorency Vere de Vere, To think that one I held so dear Should use a base deceiver’s art To trifle with my loving heart.
Cupid Caught Napping
Cupid on a summer day, Wearied by unceasing play, In a rose heart sleeping lay, While, to guard the tricksy fellow,
Night In The City
The sluggish clouds hang low upon the town,
And from yon lamp in chilled and sodden rays
The feeble light gropes through the heavy mist
And dies, extinguished in the stagnant maze.
From moisty eaves the drops fall slowly down
To strike with leaden sound the walk below,
And in dark, murky pools upon the street
The water stands, as lacking life to flow.