Nathaniel Benchley

Nathaniel Benchley's picture


Nathaniel Benchley (1915 – 1981), was an American author and longtime summer resident of Nantucket. Benchley wrote many children's/juvenile books and his
1961 novel The Off-Islanders was made into a motion picture titled The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming for which he was nominated for an Academy Award for Adapted Screenplay. He was a close friend of actor Humphrey Bogart and wrote his biography in 1975. Benchley's novel Welcome to Xanadu was made into the 1975 motion picture Sweet Hostage. He was the son of Gertrude Darling and Robert Benchley (1889-1945), the noted American writer and one of the founders of the Algonquin Round Table in New York City. His elder son, Peter Benchley (1940-2006), was a writer best known for writing the novel Jaws and the screenplay of the 1975 Steven Spielberg film made from it.

Articles by this Contributor

December 1959

The Indians who sold Manhattan were bilked, all right, but they didn’t mind—the land wasn’t theirs anyway

June 1965

The natives never could live quite happily with “off-island” civilization—but neither could they live without it