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Vannevar Bush and his article "As We May Think"
Vannevar Bush was a distinguished science administrator.  During World War II he was President Roosevelt's science advisor, and had a key part in the development of the atomic bomb.

In July of 1945, before the end of the war, he published this amazing article describing his idea of the "memex", the working desk for the researcher of the future.  He apparently thought every scholar or scientist could have a microfilm, stored and automatically available inside his or her desk, of every article or book ever printed; and could add continuously to this record.

Like everyone else, Bush vastly underestimated the amount that would be published.  His idea could not possibly be done with microfilm.  But the idea figured strongly in the thinking of Doug Engelbart.

And basically it was the idea of hypertext.  Bush's idea of the "trail" was a kind of hypertext, made of commented connections.

However, note that Bush's trails connected by TRANSCLUSION, rather than link.