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Monday, October 28, 2019

Writing As A Champion For The People

“I have never been bored an hour in my life. I get up every morning wondering what new strange glamorous thing is going to happen and it happens at fairly regular intervals.” – William Allen White

Born in 1868, White was a journalist, politician, author, and leader of the Progressive movement.   As editor and publisher of The Emporia Gazette in Emporia, KS, (from 1895-1944) White was an iconic spokesman for Middle Class America.  A champion for the “average” American, he built his newspaper, his reputation, and his community in the process.   
                                    With a warm sense of humor, articulate editorial pen, and commonsense approach to life, White soon became known throughout the country and the writing world, earning a Pulitzer Prize in the process. His Gazette editorials were widely reprinted; he wrote syndicated stories on politics; and did biographies of Woodrow Wilson and Calvin Coolidge. "What's the Matter With Kansas?" and "Mary White" — a beautiful tribute to his 16-year-old daughter on her accidental death in 1921— were his best-known editorials, but many others helped shape our nation’s life and politics.

During his lifetime, he had 22 books published and along with longtime friend Dorothy Canfield founded the Book of the Month Club, a great boon for readers and writers alike.  Today, both the University of Kansas School of Journalism and the Emporia State University Library are named in his honor.   “Present the facts fairly and honestly,” he said, “(and) truth will take care of itself.”

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