Hesketh Pearson (Hesketh Edward Gibbon Pearson) Biography
(1887–1964), (Hesketh Edward Gibbon Pearson), Modern Men and Mummers, Iron Rations, Doctor Darwin
British biographer, born at Hawford, Worcestershire, educated at Bedford Grammar School; he worked in a shipping office and spent two years in America before beginning his career as an actor in 1911. He continued to work successfully in the theatre until 1931, when he became a full-time writer. Pearson's early works include Modern Men and Mummers (1921), sketches of well-known figures in the theatre, and the short stories of Iron Rations (1928). Doctor Darwin (1930), a biography of Erasmus Darwin, was the first of the many works which made him the leading popular biographer of his day. Among his subsequent publications are Smith of the Smiths (1934), a treatment of Sydney Smith, Conan Doyle (1943), Dickens (1949), and Henry of Navarre (1963). He collaborated on several books with Hugh Kingsmill; Skye High (1937) recorded their expedition along the route taken by Boswell and Johnson in the latter's A Journey to the Western Isles of Scotland (1775). The autobiographical Hesketh Pearson, by Himself appeared in 1965.