In 1971 Michael Hart created the first eBook, The Declaration of Independence. Little did he or anyone else know where this would lead. Michael hart passed away yesterday. There are several tributes and obituaries on the web already. I’ve linked to a few of them below. Those considering a donation can use the usual Project Gutenberg link.
Gutenberg News – A post from July of 2011 from Michael Hart, celebrating the 40th anniversary of ebooks