Text taken from www.geraldgardner.com with permission:
"Witchcraft Today proved to be the first nonfiction book on Wicca ever published, and its author, Gerald Gardner, is debatably the first to ever practice Wicca in a recognizably modern form. Since that book, Wicca has flourished and spread to over 66 countries and a number of languages beyond English. Today, Wicca is on the edge of gaining widespread, public recognition as a religion, but Gerald Gardner is virtually unknown. The man solely responsible for popularizing a modern religious movement is rarely mentioned in text or conversation concerning Wicca. Because of this continuing obscurity, we are left with only what 'Old Gerald' has revealed to us about himself--and even that information must be worked for. His books are out of print more often than not, and what Gardner chooses to reveal about himself is sparse and sometimes misleading. Too many questions are left unanswered. The largest is definitely whether Gardner "invented" Wicca or was, as he claims, initiated into it." Thanks Morgan!
Gerald Gardner was not simply influenced by Aleister Crowley, but the two of them were friends. When Aleister passed on, Gardner attempted to purchase most of Crowley's occult related possessions. This is evidenced by a letter from Gardner which can be found at www.geraldgardner.com.