Peter A. Ruber, BSI ("Camden House") died on Long Island on March 6, 2014 at the age of 73. He was born in Vienna and emigrated to the US in 1948. He was an executive with the New York advertising agency Kenyon & Eckhardt in the 1960's and for the past two decades was a consultant and free-lance journalist for many leading business information technology magazines. There was a time that he had thirty- seven different computer systems operating in his office. At one time Peter also owned and operated a catering business, and then operated a business selling bulk food supplies to senior citizens and institutions.
In the early 60's Peter traveled to Chicago and met both Vincent Starrett and Jay Finley Christ. In 1961 he published Sherlock's Anniversaries, a collection of Christ's columns from the Chicago Tribune from his Crowborough Private Press and Finch's Final Fling in 1963 from his Candlelight Press created the same year. He edited and published four issues of The Baker Street Gasogene (1961-1962).
In 1963 his Candlelight Press reprinted Conan Doyle's Strange Stories from Life published by the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Literary Society. As a young man in his twenties, he became friends with Vincent Starrett and took every chance he could get to visit him in Chicago. He collected many letters to and from Starrett and, at the age of 28, published a tribute volume The Last Bookman, which is perhaps his best-known publication, edited and published from his Candlelight Press in 1968.
He came to know and publish many books by Arkham House founder August Derleth between 1962-1971, some under his Candlelight Press imprint, and had been researching Derleth's life and time for many years. Peter published many collectible Solar Pons volumes including Derleth's The Praed Street Papers and The Adventure of the Orient Express from his Candlelight Press, and worked with Luther Norris to found The Praed Street Irregulars in the mid-1960s.
Peter was appointed as the editor of Arkham House Publishers from 1997 through 2007, worked as a editor with The Battered Silicon Dispatch Box from 1994 through 2004, was the initial editor for The Vincent Starrett Memorial Library, and edited, for Ash-Tree Press, a collection of previously unpublished ghost stories Reunion at Dawn by H. Russell Wakefield (2000) and Night Creatures by Seabury Quinn (2003).
Peter is survived by his wife Gail, his three boys, two granddaughters and one grandson. He was invested into The Baker Street Irregulars in 1964 as "Camden House."
Special thanks to George Vanderburgh for his contribution to this piece.
Image credit: Karen Murdoch