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The Port Folio was a Philadelphia literary and political magazine published from 1801 to 1827.

The Port Folio
Port Folio Magazine Cover Page.jpg
Cover sheet of an 1804 issue
EditorJoseph Dennie
EditorNicholas Biddle
EditorJohn Elihu Hall
CategoriesPolitics and literature
Year founded1800
First issueJanuary 3, 1801
CountryUnited States
Based inPhiladelphia

It was first co-published in 1801 by Joseph Dennie and Asbury Dickins. Dickins dropped as co-publisher, and Dennie remained the editor from 1802–1812.[1] Dennie wrote under the pen name of Oliver Oldschool.

Many other contributors to the magazine wrote under pseudonyms, including members of the Federalist Party.[2] Paul Allen (February 15, 1775 – August 18, 1826), a graduate of Brown University, was hired about 1800 as an editor.[3]

In 1808 Dennie lost financial control to the publishers Bradford and Inskeep, although he was kept on as editor at a salary. In 1809 the paper was re-organized as a monthly, and a new prospectus was issued which de-emphasized politics. In 1810 Dennie dropped the Oliver Oldschool pseudonym and wrote under his own name. Dennie died in 1812.[4]

After Dennie's death, Nicholas Biddle, who was already a literary contributor and patron, became editor, but only until 1814. Charles Jared Ingersoll, a non-practicing lawyer, was also a contributor and patron.[5]

From 1816–1827 the editor was John Elihu Hall. The paper had been floundering since Joseph Dennie died in 1812. John Hall, James Hall and Sarah Ewing Hall had all written works for The Port Folio under Dennie, and John Hall continued to rely heavily on James and Sarah while he was editor. However Hall was never able to resurrect the original reputation the journal had, and it folded in 1827.[6]


  1. ^ Nuermberger, Ruth Ketring (July 1947). "Asbury Dickins (1780-1861) : A Career in Government Service". The North Carolina Historical Review. North Carolina Office of Archives and History. 24 (3): 281–314. JSTOR 23515626.
  2. ^ Kerber, Linda K. Kerber; Walter John Morris (1966). "Politics and Literature: The Adams Family and the Port Folio". William and Mary Quarterly. Third Series. 23 (3): 450–476. JSTOR 1919240.
  3. ^ Cutright, Paul Russell (July 1982). Contributions of Philadelphia to Lewis and Clark History. Portland, Oregon: Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation, Inc. pp. 33–35. ISBN 0-9678887-0-0.
  4. ^ Elli, Harold Milton (July 15, 1915). "Joseph Dennie and His Circle: A Study in American Literature From 1792 to 1812". Studies in English. University of Texas Press (3): i–vii, 9–245, 247–285. JSTOR 20779346.
  5. ^ Burt, Nathaniel (1999). The Perennial Philadelphians: The Anatomy of an American Aristocracy. University of Pennsylvania Press. pp. 370–371. ISBN 0-8122-1693-8.
  6. ^ Malone, Dumas, ed. (1932). "John Elihu Hall". Dictionary of American Biography. 8. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. pp. 138–139. Retrieved October 17, 2016.

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