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Joseph Medill Patterson

Joseph Medill PattersonBorn: 6-Jan-1879
Birthplace: Chicago, IL
Died: 26-May-1946
Location of death: New York City
Cause of death: Liver Failure
Remains: Buried, Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Business, Journalist

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Founder of New York Daily News

Military service: US Army (1916-18, Capt.)

Joseph M. Patterson was the founder and publisher of the New York Daily News, America's first successful tabloid newspaper. Providing lurid, detailed coverage of crime and using photography to an extent never seen before, the first edition of what was then called The Illustrated Daily News rolled off the press on 26 June 1919, and within five years it had the largest circulation of any newspaper in America. Patterson also influenced the development of several comic strips, suggesting to Chester Gould that "Plainclothes Tracy" would work better as "Dick Tracy" and describing the adventure strip he wanted from Milton Caniff, which became "Terry and the Pirates".

As a young man he briefly served in the Illinois legislature as a Republican, then became an avowed socialist, and was a campaign aide for Eugene V. Debs' 1908 presidential run. His grandfather, Joseph Medill, was founder of the Chicago Tribune, and his father, Robert W. Patterson Jr., and cousin, Robert McCormick, were publishers of that paper. His sister, Cissy Patterson, was publisher of the Washington Times-Herald, and his daughter, Alicia Patterson, was founder of Newsday. His grandson, Joseph Medill Patterson Albright, was married and divorced from Madeleine Albright before she served as Secretary of State.

Father: Robert Wilson Patterson Jr. (Chicago Tribune publisher, b. 30-Nov-1850, d. 1-Apr-1910)
Mother: Elinor Medill Patterson (:Nellie", b. 3-Jan-1856, m. 17-Jan-1878, d. circa 1948)
Sister: Cissy Patterson (Washington Times-Herald publisher)
Wife: Alice Higinbotham Patterson (department store heiress, b. 21-Dec-1878, m. 19-Nov-1902, div. 1938, d. 15-Dec-1966)
Daughter: Alicia Patterson (founder of Newsday)
Daughter: Elinor Patterson
Daughter: Josephine Patterson
Wife: Mary King Patterson (former mistress, b. 3-Dec-1885, m. 1938, d. 27-Dec-1975, one son)
Son: James Joseph Patterson (New York Daily News executive, b. 1923, d. 1992)

    High School: Groton School, Groton, MA
    University: Yale University (1901)

    The New York Daily News Publisher (1919-46)
    Chicago Tribune Co-Publisher (1910-25)
    Chicago Tribune Reporter (1901-05)
    Illinois State Official Chicago Commissioner of Public Works (1905-06)
    Illinois State House of Representatives (1903-04)
    McCormick Family
    Scroll and Key
    Canadian Ancestry
    Risk Factors: Alcoholism

Author of books:
A Little Brother of the Rich (1908, novel)
Rebellion (1911)
The Notebook of A Neutral (1916, war memoir)

Wrote plays:
A Little Brother of the Rich (1909)
Rebellion (1911, with Walter Dean Goldbeck)
The Fourth Estate (1909)
Dope (1909)


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