Garrett Putman Serviss was an American astronomer and early science fiction writer. He was born in upstate New York in 1851 and majored in science at Cornell University. He also studied law at Columbia University although he never worked as an attorney, instead becoming a journalist for The New York Sun in 1876. At the end of 1897, Serviss was commissioned to write an unofficial sequel to an equally unofficial 1897 revision of H. G. Wells‘ The War of the Worlds which set the action in America. Edison’s Conquest of Mars first appeared in the New York Evening Journal as ‘The Conquest of Mars’. He died on this day in 1929.