Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding Aid to the William Randolph Hearst Papers, 1874-1951 (bulk 1927-1947)
BANC MSS 77/121 c  
View entire collection guide What's This?
Search this collection
Collection Overview
Table of contents What's This?
Consists of a portion of William Randolph Hearst's business and personal office files primarily for the years 1927-1929, 1937-1938, and 1944-1947. The papers present an overview of of Hearst's newspaper empire and his management and editorial styles; provide a glimpse into his filmmaking; and an incomplete picture of his acquisitions of antiques, art, and property. Also includes a small amount of correspondence with architect Julia Morgan and builder George Loorz about the construction of Hearst Castle. The bulk of the collection concerns the editorial management of his newspapers, magazines, and related companies.
William Randolph Hearst, a flamboyant, highly controversial American journalist, publisher, and politician, was born in San Francisco on April 29, 1893. After a stint at Harvard, his father gave him the newspaper, San Francisco Examiner, to run. He experimented profitably with eye-catching pictures, screaming typography, and earthy, mass-appeal news coverage. His purchase of the New York Morning Journal in 1895, instigated a bitter war with the other New York City journals. Hearst provided aggressive news coverage while increasing the paper's size and slashing prices to a penny. By luring employees from other papers with higher salaries and greater prestige, he built an impressive roster of editors, publishers, and reporters. By the 1930s, he controlled the largest publishing empire in the United States, including twenty-eight newspapers, the Cosmopolitan Picture Studio, radio stations, and nine magazines. His deep personal interest day-by-day in the coverage, layout and competitive quality of his publishing interests kept his editors constantly on their toes.
Number of containers: 14 boxes, 46 cartons, 8 oversize folders, 9 oversize boxes Linear feet: 66 21 digital objects (24 images)
Copyright has not been assigned to The Bancroft Library. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the appropriate curator or the Head of Public Services for forwarding. Permission for publication is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.
Collection open for research.