Hoyt 'Pete' Spelman III

Hoyt “Pete” Spelman III was born in Mineola, NY on June 4, 1936; he died in New York City on December 2, 2022.  Son of Hoyt Spelman Junior and Beatrice Powell Spelman, he grew up and attended public school in Hempstead, NY. His family moved to New York City in 1949 where Hoyt lived for most of the rest of his life. (At the time of his death, he and his wife Margot had been residents of Fifth Ave since 1963.)

Pete graduated from Kent School, Kent, CT in 1954 and entered Yale. There he was a divisional honors major in history, the arts and letters. Hoyt graduated from Yale in 1958. That summer he attended the Radcliffe Publishing Procedures course at Harvard and in the fall of 1958 he joined the editorial staff of The New Yorker magazine. In 1959 he worked briefly for the Readers’ Digest before being drafted into the US Army. After basic training at Fort Dix, New Jersey, Hoyt spent four months in the Armored Division of Fort Knox, Kentucky; he returned to New York City for Reserve Duty with the Seventh Regiment National Guard. In the fall of 1959, he joined The New Yorker’s business side, starting as a promotion assistant and rising to Promotion Director, Public Relations’ Director, Director of Marketing and Communications, and finally to Publishing Director. After a sabbatical in 1984 at Oxford University he left the magazine in 1985 when The New Yorker was purchased by Conde Nast.

After nine years as an independent consultant and contract publisher, he joined Halstead Property as an Associate Broker and remained there until his retirement in 2021. He was a member of The Century Association and Life Member of The Yale Club of New York City.

He is survived by his two children, Alexander Macdonald Spelman and Laura Hawley Spelman as well as four grandchildren, Alessia and Tea Spelman and Lucas and Charles Kim. He was predeceased by his wife, Margot Grace Hawley Spelman, by one day. A memorial service will be held at The Church of the Heavenly Rest.

Published by New York Times on Dec. 11, 2022.