The Herald Square Hotel
where you"Spend a Night, Not a Fortune"
An affordable lifestyle hotel

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The 112 year old Original Life Magazine Building.
The Home of Life Publishing Company Inc.
HeraldSquareHotel.com

19 West 31st Street    •    New York, NY 10001
Tel: (212) 279-4017   •   Toll-free reservations: (800) 727-1888 in USA  •   Fax: (212) 643-9208




William Balfour Ker (1877 - 1918) "LIFE Magazine" Gallery

William Balfour Ker possessed undoubted genius. He revolted at the existing order of things. He was a wanderer over the face of the earth, and voiced more dramatically than any other the cry of the unemployed. Of Mr. Ker's nickers, as they have appeared in LIFE, it is sufficient to observe that they stand out complete in the memory, carrying the lesson of human injustice to a point where it can no longer be ignored. And what Mr.Ker's work is, his life is: his work has grown out of his life, is the logical development of it; it expresses more beautifully and more dramatically than words the bitter cry of the underdog -- portrayed with a mixture of sympathy, sentiment and humor unequaled.
"Something that I have never had satisfactorily explained is that I was born in an Imperial Bank of Canada, at Dunville, Ontario, July 25, 1877", he once said. He came to the United States, lived in Pennsylvania, attended public schools, and at eighteen studied law at George Washington University. About that time, he went to evening drawing classes at the Corcoran School in Washington, D.C., and eventually found himself in New York. He wandered over England, France, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Hoboken and the Bronx. Various jobs included a newspaper reporter, bank clerk, scene painter, sculptor1s assistant, beggar, illustrator and stowaway. He even spent a night in the Yonkers lockup. "I am a vegetarian and a socialist, atheist and ladies man" he would say with a laugh
.
William Balfour Ker's works include:

CENTURY Magazine/1900,
COLLIER'SMagazine/1909,
EVERYBODY's Magazine/1905, 1908-1917,
and LIFE Magazine/1903-1905, 1909, 1920.


September 6, 1906
William Balfour Ker


January 18, 1906
William Balfour Ker

December 7, 1905
"XMAS 1905"
William Balfour Ker


October 1, 1908

William Balfour Ker

December 24, 1908
"CHRISTMAS 1908"
William Balfour-Ker


December 4, 1904
"CHRISTMAS 1904"
William Balfour-Ker

November 27, 1904
"Thanksgiving 1904"
William Balfour-Ker


January 3, 1907
"What makes it go 'round?"

William Balfour-Ker

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