Born February 24, 1909, in Sauk City, August Derleth lived virtually his entire life in his native Sac Prairie. He began writing at the age of thirteen and had over 150 books to his credit at the time of his death on July 4, 1971. Versatile as he was prolific, Derleth is best known for his regional literature that includes historical novels, biographies, short stories, journals and poetry. He lived his own life in the spirit of Thoreau and believed that life in Sac Prairie is a microcosm that mirrors universal truths.
August Derleth was also a noted editor, publisher and lecturer. In 1939 he founded Arkham House Publishers and saw it achieve an international reputation under his directorship. He was the recipient of many honors and awards including a Guggenhelm Fellowship and the Governor's Award for service to the creative arts.