The Viking Press was founded in New York City on March 1, 1925, by Harold K. Guinzburg and George S. Oppenheimer. Their founding creed: "To publish a strictly limited list of good nonfiction, such as biography, history and works on contemporary affairs, and distinguished fiction with some claim to permanent importance rather than ephemeral popular interest." The firm's name and its logo, a Viking ship drawn by Rockwell Kent, were chosen as symbols of enterprise, adventure, and exploration in publishing. Launched in the fall of 1925, early Viking lists included books by August Strindberg,Carl van Doren Vita Sackville-West, Mohandas Gandhi, Bertrand Russell, and Thorstein Veblen.
As Viking approaches its second century, we think the founders would be well pleased with the works and authors who are part of our continuing publishing program. Recent successes continue to shape the thinking of the world and capture the spirit of the times. Viking is proud to publish Jan Karon's The Mitford Years and Father Tim Novels, Eat, Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson, In the Heart of the Sea and Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick, The Secret Life of Bees and The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd, Collapse by Jared Diamond, Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding, American Dynasty by Kevin Phillips, The Memory Keepers Daughter by Kim Edwards, and March and People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks.