Sunday, May 24, 2009
I just found this great 1961 image of journalist Helen Thomas with President JFK. Helen was good friends with women's page journalist Eleni Epstein. In 1955, Eleni told Thomas that she had paid enough dues on the dawn patrol and deserved a better position. This story can be found in Helen Thomas, Front Row at the White House (New York: Scribner, 2000)
I just received revision recommendations for an R & R on my article about Eleni. I went through her papers at two archives to write the article.
A Seattle preservation group is planning to save the globe that is found on top of the former Seattle P-I building. Here is a story about it.
I am trying to find out if anything is being done to save the memorial for Bobbi McCallum that is found in front of the building. An image of the fountain memorial is shown above. We went to see it when we were in Seattle last fall.
I emailed the reporter of the story about the globe to see if anything is being done about the McCallum memorial, and she responded with the helpful: "Not that I know of." Not very helpful.
My article about Bobbi will come out late this year or early next year.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
I got good news about my article on Seattle women's page journalist Bobbi McCallum. The article is scheduled to run in a state history publication this fall. This picture of Bobbi was taken at a Penney-Missouri Award workshop.
This letter is from Janet Grimley, an editor at the Seattle P-I before the newspaper folded. She was a great help in tracking down information about Bobbi.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
I just received this book, The Stork and You, written by Joan Younger Dickinson. (I tracked it down on Amazon.) The book was an early version of What to Expect When You Are Expecting. JYD had been a wire reporter during World War II and then a staff writer for the Ladies Home Journal. She wrote the book after she had her child Rosalind.
I found this copy of the March 1947 Ladies Home Journal on eBay. It includes two long stories by JYD: "The Hard Price of Soft Coal" and "The Volunteer Worker, 1947 Style."
I am continuing to work on article about Joan's career.
Monday, May 18, 2009
Last night, Dallas PBS affiliate aired the documentary Texas Trailblazers about Vivian Castleberry, a longtime Dallas women's page editor. There was a screening at the Women's Museum in Dallas. I flew out to Dallas in March to be interviewed for the documentary.
This is a photo of me with Vivian at her home last summer.
This is a photo of me with Vivian at her home last summer.
I just got the assignment to review the book, Bad Girls Go Everywhere: The Life of Helen Gurley Brown. Before she became well known as the editor of Cosmo magazine, Helen Gurley Brown had a popular column for single women that ran in the women's pages.
This photo is of Helen from 1964. Newspapers across the country ran Helen Gurley Brown's column, “The Woman Alone" in the 1960s. Her 1962 book, Sex and the Single Girl, had caused a sensation. The book encouraged women’s independence – and a little contradiction thrown in. For example, she advises that a woman have an apartment of her own and that she have a job that interests her. Yet, she also advises that she have not an ounce of “baby fat.” While the argument has been made that much of the advice was based on attracting a man’s attention, it should also be noted that the advice did encourage women to be economically independent and aware of current events.
Her newspaper column encouraged similar independence. In a 1963 column that ran in the Miami News, a reader who was a widow wrote that her children were angry with her because she had turned down a marriage proposal. Gurley Brown encouraged the widow to stand her ground. She wrote: “As for her children, they’ll have no choice but to have their teeth recapped when they grind them down over this mother who may sound frivolous but who very much knows her own mind.”
Thursday, May 14, 2009
Ann Friedman's article the "Trouble with Double X" is now available on The American Prospect website. Ann interviewed me yesterday about how women's pages compare to women-based websites. It's a great article.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Today I found this image of Florida Sen. Lori Wilson - she is sticking her tongue out at Gov. Bob Graham. It can be found in the Florida Memory Project.
I am finishing revisions on an article about Sen. Wilson, her fight for the Equal Rights Amendment and the Florida media's coverage of the issue. I focus on the coverage in the women's pages and then the news sections.
The manuscript is a revise and resubmit for a state history journal.
Monday, May 11, 2009
Lance and I just returned from a trip to the Bahamas. This photo was taken last Friday.
Our visit to the Bahamas was a reminder of women's page and women's magazine journalist Joan Younger Dickinson. JYD worked for UPI for many years beginning during World War II.
JYD visited the Bahamas to cover the arrival of the Duchess of Windsor – a worldwide news event. In December 1936, King Edward advocated the throne to marry Wallace Simpson. After marriage, the couple became the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. After several years in France, the Duke was appointed the governor of the Bahamas during World War II. JYD was one of the few journalists there.
Above is a photo of JYD with the Duchess. It can be found in her papers at the University of Wyoming.
I am working on revisions of an article about JYD based on her papers at the University of Wyoming. It's been a difficult story to tell.
Thursday, May 7, 2009
The article about Vera Glaser that I presented at the Winter AJHA-AEJMC Meeting has been posted to the Hall Institute of Public Policy website. Here is a link.
I am working on a longer article about Vera's work with Catherine East. The two were a powerful partnership for women in the late 1960s and early 1970s. I have gone through Vera's papers at the University of Wyoming and through Catherine's papers at Harvard.
Monday, May 4, 2009
My women's page journalists have at least two connections to the Kentucky Derby.
The first relates to Jim Squires, pictured here, editor of the Chicago Tribune in the 1980s. He was Koky Dishon's boss and gave her the freedom to redefine "soft news." Jim retired from the newspaper to raise race horses and is a race horsing expert, including the Derby, for the Washington Post. Jim's papers are at Vanderbilt University and include several letters between Jim and Koky.
My article about Koky comes out soon in a regional history journal.
The second connection is to Carol Sutton, women's page editor and then managing editor of the Louisville Courier-Journal. It was at the Derby that Carol met New York Times journalist Charlotte Curtis. Carol's husband Charles Whaley later wrote about the two women meeting in a review of Charlotte's book in the Louisville Courier-Journal.
My article about Carol is scheduled to be published by a national journalism history journal next year.