Worked as a bookseller, bookbinder, and librarian in Paisley, Scotland. Immigrated to Philadelphia (1771); opened a stationer’s shop and bookstore. Edited the Pennsylvania Magazine; or, American Monthly Museum (1775-76). Printer to the Continental Congress. Published the Aitken Bible, the first complete edition of the Bible printed in North America (1782).
Born in Dalkeith, Scotland. Married Janet Skeoch; four children, including Robert, Jr.
xxi, 517n; DAB; John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes, eds., American National Biography (24 vols., New York, 1999).