Phil Bronson

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(August 31, 1924 – December 25, 1996)

Philip Bronson, who lived in Hastings, MN, a town thirty miles south of St. Paul, was a member of the Minneapolis Fantasy Society, commuting to meetings. He published Fantasite between 1940 and 1944, a 12-issue fanzine and the Official Organ of the MFS. Harry Warner called it one of the great fanzines of the War Years. The zine ceased publication when Bronson moved from Minnesota to California with his mother and stepfather. He attended the Denvention (the 1941 Worldcon) and the Second Michicon in 1942.

Because he included comic strip/comic book material in the two issues of his Scienti-Comics in 1940, he is credited by some as being the first fan to publish a comic book fanzine. The first issue was published from Hastings in May-June of 1940. It was a 20-page, color hektographed fanzine and featured a complete SF comic by Bronson called "Robot Doom." The second issue was 38 pages, and featured contributions by C. Christopher Cross, Damon Knight, Robert Lowndes, and a fan poll by Art Widner, editor of Fanfare.

In 1941, Bronson was a founding member of the National Fantasy Fan Federation and was a member of its advisory board for its first two years. He was probably behind the Hastings S-F Conference.

By 1942, he was taken in by Claude Degler, saying "This Indiana fellow's drawl fascinates me. I like to hear him talk. He's a rather tall chap, enthusiastic about it all, and has nice plans for Indiana fandom and their fan magazine, Infinite. I met him at Denver last year; I liked him then and like him more yet now." Yet later, in LA he and Walt Daugherty got angry with each other because they each claimed the right to throw Degler out of LASFS.

After World War II, he moved back to Minneapolis, and was one of the members of the revived MFS. Poul Anderson, who was then a neofan and neopro, tuckerized Bronson (and several other MFS members) in his early stories.

He seems to have gafiated by the late ’40s or early ’50s. He later moved to Maine and died in 1996.

Jack Speer credited Bronson with having suggested the name of Fancyclopedia.

The story that his (mundane) younger brother was the originator of the one-time commonly used fannish expression fout appears to be inaccurate. He did not have a younger brother but may have had a younger stepbrother, this this has not been confirmed.

Fanzines and Apazines:



Person Reasonator 19241996
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