A medium-sized publishing house founded in 1927, Coward-McCann was joined with the firm G.P. Putnam's in 1936 to publish titles such as playwright Thornton Wilder's Our Town. In 1959, John Geoghegan joined Coward-McCann as editor-in-chief. Two years later, he was named president, then chairman. In 1971, the company was renamed Coward, McCann & Geoghegan.
Coward-McCann was not consistent in their practices for identifying first editions, but in general, subsequent printings are noted. From 1928 to 1935, the company sometimes placed a colophon with a torch design on the copyright page of first editions and removed the torch portion of the colophon on subsequent printings. From 1936 on, first editions either have "First American Edition" on the copyright page of books published outside of the United States or have no additional printings indicated on the copyright page.