Carl Llewellyn Weschcke
Publishing Pioneer, Visionary, The Father of New Age
It is with profound sadness we share the news of Carl Llewellyn Weschcke’s passing. He passed peacefully on Saturday, November 7 surrounded by family. He was 85.
Carl Llewellyn Weschcke was Chairman and the driving force behind Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd., the oldest and largest publishers of New Age, Metaphysical, Self-Help, and Spirituality books in the world.
Weschcke was a life-long student of a broad range of Metaphysical, Spiritual and Occult subjects which led him to the purchase of the Llewellyn publishing company in 1961. He relocated the company to his home on Summit Avenue in St. Paul. The mansion was said to be haunted and became the subject of many investigations and news stories through the 1960s and 1970s and remains well-known to this day.
Authors and booksellers referred to Weschcke as "the Father of the New Age" because of his early and aggressive public sponsorship of Astrology, Magic, Metaphysics, Paganism, Parapsychology, Tantra, Wicca and Yoga. Weschcke and Llewellyn contributed to the burgeoning New Age movement in the 1960s and 1970s, sponsoring Gnosticon Festivals, opening an occult school and bookstore, and publishing the occult newspaper Gnostica. He is a former Wiccan High Priest and played a leading role in the rise of Wicca and Paganism during the 1960s and 1970s. In the fall of 1973 Weschcke helped organize the Council of American Witches and became its chairperson.
Carl wasn't involved in the day to day activities of Midnight Ink, yet I felt supported by him. When we received an award or a starred review, he would send me a quick note of congrats. When I shared with him my goal of acquiring a book that would ultimately earn an Edgar award and hit the NYT bestseller list, he loved that I set my goals high and encouraged me to go out and find that book. And when I do, I know he will be out in the universe, smiling down at me and Midnight Ink.