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HYDERABAD-500 033 



: ?P- '* ' 

Accession No. 


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COPCTUGHT, 191 5, 

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Much has happened in the newspaper profession and in 
the schools of journalism since this book was first published 
ten years ago. The newspapers have "covered" a World 
(War and war periods have always brought the greatest 
changes in American newspapers have wrestled with 
doubled costs of production, reduced staffs, much merging, 
curtailed income, and are now deep in the perplexities of 
reconstruction. Meanwhile schools and courses in journalism 
have greatly increased in number, enrollment, and branches 
of instruction. 

When the book was presented in 1915, it was the first 
textbook entirely devoted to the problems and technique of 
newspaper desk work. It has, therefore, been widely used 
in classes in copyreading, headline writing, and make-up, as 
well as in newspaper offices. Its contents have been put to 
a severe test, and some have been found wanting. The 
author himself, in using it year after year in class, filled many 
page margins with suggestions for improvement. 

Hence, in preparation for its tenth anniversary, it is well 
that the book should receive a thorough overhauling to 
bring it up to date, to put in some things omitted before, to 
make it more usable and "teachable." Its general structure 
has not been changed. Most of the alterations are in the 
chapters on copyreading, headline writing, make-up, and 
type, but many additions have been made in other chapters. 

"Class exercises" have now been added to each chapter to 
present in brief much of the technique of teaching, as it has 
developed in the larger schools. They are intended to be 
suggestive, not only to the teacher, but to independent stu- 



dents and young newspaper workers. A bibliography has 
been added to suggest further reading. 

In the schools of journalism, the methods of teaching 
copyreading have developed during the period since first 
publication probably more than any other branch, and have 
been somewhat standardized. These ideas are now quite gen- 
erally accepted: (i) the work can best be done with a small 
group working around a copy desk at high speed and under 
strict supervision; (2) thorough knowledge of typography 
must be included; and (3) extensive practice in make-up, 
either "on the stone" or with shears and paste pot, must 
bind together other phases of desk work. Hence, the horse- 
shoe copy desk is now a standard piece of furniture in many 
schools of journalism, and some schools are installing the 
"type laboratory" of the kind that was first developed at the 
University of Wisconsin "a printshop without a press" 
where students do not merely stand around and watch 
printers, but actually set type, plan display, and make up 
pages on the stone. 

Not even now is this a volume on "the ethics of desk work." 
It seems certain, from the trend of talk in newspaper offices 
and in schools of journalism, that books will be written on 
the ethical considerations of copyreading and headline writ- 
ing. But this book was at first, and still is, principally 
devoted to technique. Here and there, however, hints at 
ethical considerations have been dropped in, and the public- 
service aspects of some particular practices are suggested. 

The number of "clipped examples" is still kept down to 
a minimum for two reasons: (i) any examples of head- 
lines and make-up taken from current newspapers are so 
bound up with today's news that they will go out of date 
and become stale in a few months ; (2) search for examples, 
good or bad, is the best exercise for newspaper students. 
Through searching for one kind of technique, they see others 
and learn discrimination learn to distinguish good from bad 


in newspaper work. Instead of reprinting headline sched- 
ules of today, the author suggests clipping headline styles 
from current newspapers. 

As before, the book aims, not only to present the tools 
and methods of copyreading, but to show its interesting 
possibilities. Too many newspaper men, especially reporters, 
regard desk work as drudgery and feel that to be placed 
"on the desk" is to be pushed back out of the firing line. 
Desk work is fascinating if done in the proper spirit, but 
it must be more than mere "paragraph marking* 1 and "head- 
ing up." That is why many subjects have been introduced 
that may seem "outside the copyreader's line" for in- 
stance, the discussion of type and printing processes, the de- 
tailed study of the physical side of the newspaper under 
"Make-up." Newspaper staffs are becoming more and more 
interested in these subjects; managing editors are seeking 
men who know type and what may be done with it. 

For the editor and teacher-adviser of student newspapers 
and magazines, as well as for the newspaper man or student 
of journalism who is called upon to edit small periodicals, 
the chapter on "Small Publication Work" presents some of 
the methods and short cuts of large newspaper and magazine 

The Style Sheet (Appendix II) is offered as a model, 
rather than final dictum. It was drawn up by instructors 
in the University of Wisconsin school of journalism, in co- 
operation with several newspaper editors, and embodies 
practices of that state. For use in other localities, its rules 
must be altered to match local usages. In whatever form, 
however, the style sheet offers a means of developing ac- 
curacy in small details. 

Just as in typographical style, the greatest problem in a 
book on editing is the selection of average methods from 
the varying practices of 'newspaper offices. Desk-work 
methods and terms differ greatly in various localities. In 


his work on a New York Gty newspaper, the author learned 
methods rarely seen in the Middle West ; he has heard news- 
paper men in one city laugh at the methods of another. Out 
of all this, he has tried to select the average, discarding the 
more slipshod methods of smaller offices in favor of the 
systematic practices of metropolitan offices in some cases 
suggesting the highly systematized methods of magazine 
offices in which he has worked. 

The method of presentation throughout is drawn from 
fifteen years of classroom work in a large school of jour- 
nalism. Little attempt is made to lay down rules. Rather 
the effort is to present fundamentals, to encourage analysis 
of current practices, and to answer the questions that arise 
in students' minds. In many cases, it is hoped, the answer 
is one that will open up the broader, ethical aspects of the 

For valuable suggestions for the revision of this book the 
author is indebted to his colleagues, Prof. Willard G. Bleyer 
and Prof. E. Marion Johnson, of the Course in Journalism 
of the University of Wisconsin. To many another journalism 
teacher and newspaper man, the author owes credit for ideas. 

G. M. H. 













VIII. TYPE f 261 







III. BOOKS ON JOURNALISM . . , . . . . . 395 

INDEX . 401 





THE copy desk in a city newspaper office is one work- 
bench in a great manufacturing plant, and a copyreader 
is one of a large group of workmen engaged in the manu- 
facture of a finished product a newspaper. The copy 
editor is, from one point of view, the most important 
workman in the entire plant, since he puts the finishing 
touches upon the raw material that goes into the product. 
From another point of view, he is only one of many 
skilled workers, many of whom are responsible for work 
as important, if not more important, than the copyreader 's. 
That paradox is one of the things that differentiates the 
organization of a newspaper plant from that of almost 
all other manufacturing businesses andone of the things 
that makes newspaper work as fascinating as it is. 

The copyreader, while occupying a comparatively sub- 
ordinate position among the newspaper's other workers, 
bears part of the responsibility of making the newspaper 
good. Carelessness or inexperience on his part may ruin 
all the good work done by others ; excellence in his work 
may cause the newspaper to win the coveted reputation of 
being "well edited." Every stroke of wofk he does 



shows in the finished product There is no one between 
his desk and the purchaser to gloss over the good or bad 
quality of his work. The same is true of many another 
worker in the newspaper plant; his work shows in the 
finished product with all the good or bad workmanship 
that he puts into it. There is little chance for the inspec- 
tion and grading employed in other manufacturing enter- 
prises. Criticism must come after the work has gone 
into the product. Criticism of bad work done today may 
improve tomorrow's output in the newspaper plant, but 
it cannot help the fact that today's bad paper has already 
gone to the buyer. 

The copyreader, when he takes his desk in a newspaper 
office, must know the relation of his work to the work of 
others in the office and at the same time must realize 
thoroughly the responsibility of his work and its effect 
upon the finished newspaper. 


The average American citizen thinks of a newspaper 
office as a hive of peculiarly unbusinesslike men, assisted 
by some printers and machinery, engaged in the somewhat 
doubtful occupation of disseminating more or less reliable 
information and opinions. That they should desire real 
money for their work, or for its by-product, advertising 
space, is often to him a humorous thing. Some news- 
paper men have the same conception of their work. 

The modern newspaper plant, however, is in reality a 
highly businesslike manufacturing enterprise engaged in 
producing a salable product and endeavoring to make. 
legitimate profit out of its manufacture, like any othet 


business concern. The product is a few or many thousand 
printed newspapers to be sold each day at a specified price 
per copy. The raw material that goes into their manu- 
facture is paper, ink, and current events. The only dif- 
ferences between this product and any other are (l) that 
much of the raw material is composed of an illusive sub- 
stance called "news," whose production is a mental rather 
than a physical process; and (2) that, because the public 
bases its opinions on .this "news," the newspaper has a 
public service or public utility fuhction. If the news- 
paper is bad, its owner should be classed with any other 
manufacturer of bad wares. The ethical conception of 
the dishonest newspaper publisher is much the same as 
that of any other dishonest manufacturer. If he does not 
put pure raw material into his product, he is selling mis- 
labeled goods. If he colors the news, he is an adultera- 
tor but, more than that, his dishonesty is poisoning the 
public mind and conscience. It is easy enough to apply 
this conception to the quality of paper, ink, and typo- 
graphical impression, but it is hard to apply it to the rest 
of the raw material. Every newspaper worker, including 
copyreaders, should, however, have this idea of his work. 
He should feel that he is a manufacturer who must deliver 
honest and pure wares to his customers. 

To carry on the manufacture of newspapers, a pub- 
lishing plant has a mechanical department, a business 
office, and a sales department, like any other manufac- 
turing concern. It also has another staff of men engaged 
in the production of the raw material news. Ordinarily 
the plant is organized on exactly these lines. All sales 
and other business relations are managed by a business 
office ; the physical production is carried on in a median- 


ical department; and the raw material, news and opin- 
ions, is handled by an editorial staff. All newspapers, 
large or small, contain the three separate departments, 
whether they employ a thousand men or one man, like 
the country editor who embodies the three departments 
in his own person. 

i. The Business Office 

The business office of the average newspaper is in 
charge of a business nUnager, who is primarily a financial 
expert responsible only to the owner or owners of the 
newspaper. His duty is to make the enterprise financially 
successful. He is independent of the other departments 
and has no authority over them except through the media- 
tion of the proprietor. A few newspapers, to be sure, 
have a general manager who guides the work and policy 
of all three departments and welds them together into a 
working whole, but he is really a newspaper expert whom 
the owner employs to exercise general supervision in his 

Besides a staff of clerks and bookkeepers, the business 
manager has in his office several other men to take care 
of the various branches of the financial work, (i) One 
is a circulation manager who has charge of the sale of 
finished newspapers. Under him are subscription clerks, 
mailing room men, newsboys, wagon drivers, and other 
agents of distribution. (2) Another is an advertising 
manager who has charge of the sale of advertising 
space both want-ad and display. He has a number of 
advertising solicitors to assist him in his work. (3) An- 
other is a cashier who has charge of all the newspaper's 
money, paying all salaries and other expenditures and 


receiving all money paid to the newspaper for adver- 
tising, sales, or other purposes. 

2. The Mechanical Plant 

The mechanical branch of the newspaper plant is in the 
same way in charge* of a single man responsible only to 
the owner or his representative. There are ordinarily 
four or five separate departments in his branch, (i) 
One department is the composing room, in which type- 
setters, printers, linotype operators, copy cutters, bank 
men, proofreaders, etc., convert manuscript into type and 
make it up into the form of the finished pages. (2) An- 
other department is the stereotyping room, in which the 
flat page forms, composed of type and cuts put together 
by the printers, are reproduced in curved metal plates for 
the rotary presses. (3) The third department is the 
pressroom, which contains huge presses for printing 
newspapers at a high rate of speed. Each of these de- 
partments has its specialized workmen who are hired to 
do various mechanical work. (4) Sometimes the news- 
paper has an engraving department whose work is to 
make plates for the newspaper's illustrations cuts, as 
they are called. (5) When the newspaper has auto- 
matic mailing machines for wrapping and addressing sub- 
scribers' copies, the mechanics in charge of them are a 
part of the plant's mechanical force. The machinery used 
in the mechanical plant is among the most ingenious and 
costly known to modern industry. 

3. The Editorial Department 

The third and most important division of the news- 
paper's plant is the editorial department which prepares 


all the readitg matter, except advertisements, that goes 
into the printed paper. Whether the paper be large or 
small, the work of this department is divided into a va- 
riety of separate and distinct branches of work. Perhaps 
all .the branches may be taken care of by a few men, or, 
if the staff is large enough, each branch may be in the 
hands of a specialist. But, however great or small the 
extent of the staff, the various kinds of work are entirely 
separate and specialized. 

Since the reading matter of every newspaper is dis- 
tinctly separated into two classes news and comment- 
the main division of the editorial department is along the 
same lines. ( i ) One staff of men, commonly known as 
the news staff, is employed for the special work of gather- 
ing and writing news. (2) Another staff, usually desig- 
nated as the editorial staff, is engaged in the work of 
interpreting the news. The one staff prepares the news 
pages ; the other prepares the editorial columns. So dis- 
tinct are the two staffs, .that each requires of its men a 
deferent kind of ability and experience. Whereas one 
group is engaged in the specific task of drawing conclu- 
sions from facts and writing comments on the facts, the 
other group is usually forbidden to show the slightest 
evidence of an opinion on anything. 

The Editorial Writers. The news interpreting, or 
editorial staff, is made up of a group of men called edi- 
torial writers, working under an editor-in-chief. This 
editor, usually the only person whom the outside world 
recognizes as editor of the paper, guides the paper's 
editorial policy and 'dictates the paper's point of view on 
passing events reported in other pages. He deals out 
editorial tomes to his small staff of writers and passes 


upon the acceptability of their editorials. Ifa bears entire 
responsibility for the character and content of the paper's 
editorial columns and sends all his copy directly to the 
printers without any corrective editing by any other mem- 
ber of the staff. His group of editorial writers may con- 
sist of one or two men, or it may include as many as a 
dozen, some of whom spend a large part of their time at 
the state or national capital and have an extensive library 
to use in their work of molding public opinion. 

The News Staff. The news staff, which prepares the 
news columns for the paper, is ordinarily larger and com- 
posed of many branches. Its head is called the managing 
editor. Under him are (i) one group of men desig- 
nated as the local staff, (2) another as the telegraph 
room, and (3) others known as department editors. Per- 
haps there is also an art department and a library. 

The Local Staff. The local room, or staff, is con- 
cerned with the gathering and writing of all news of the 
city in which the paper is published. It is entirely in 
charge of a city editor- or day and night city editors, 
if the men work in two shifts who hires and directs all 
the men in the department. The staff usually consists 
of a number of reporters and a few desk men. The re- 
porters, all working under the city editor, gather the 
news and write the stories that make up the news columns. 
Some of them are department men, nuking regular daily 
rounds on a run or beat of news sources ; others are as- 
signment men, employed to work up special assignments 
under the city editor's direction. The desk men, on the 
other hand, are not writers or newsgatherers but cor- 
rectors of the reporter's work. They are usually called 
copyreaders and, if there are several of them, they are 


organized into a small staff under a head copyrcader. 
Their work is to take the stories which the reporters have 
written, correct them according to the paper's style and 
practice, write headlines for them, and prepare them for 
the printers. Since the telephone has come into common 
use in newsgathering, certain of the desk men are em- 
ployed as rewrite men to prepare stories from facts tele- 
phoned in by reporters. All of these desk men are as- 
sistants of the city editor and work under his direction. 
The table at which they work is the "copy desk." An- 
other subeditor is the news editor whose work it is to 
make up the newspaper just before press time. 

The Telegraph Room. All news from outside the city, 
distinguished in the printed paper by datelines, is handled 
by the telegraph editor and his assistants. This staff 
usually comprises one or more telegraph operators, be- 
sides the editor and his assistants, and in many cases one 
or more copyreaders to edit and write headlines for tele- 
graph copy. Some papers, however, have one force of 
copy editors to handle both local and telegraph news. 
But, however the staff may be organized, it handles all 
news that comes to the office by telegraph, mail, cable, 
or long distance telephone. It has its staff of reporters,' 
also, working under the direction of the telegraph editor, 
but they are located in distant towns and cities and are 
known as correspondents. 

Department Editors. These two departments, the local 
and telegraph rooms, comprise the greater portion of the 
newspaper's news staff. Others are mainly specialists in 
charge of small departments of the paper. One is the 
sporting editor, who, working alone or with assistants, 
prepares the contents of the sporting page. Another is 


the society editor who gathers and writes social items. 
Other special editors, varying in number and importance, 
are the financial and market editor, the railroad editor, the 
dramatic and musical critics, and real estate editors, and 
the exchange editor. Each has his own small section of 
the paper to fill but whenever he obtains any news too 
significant to be buried in his corner he turns it over to 
the local staff to be played up in the more prominent news 
pages. Each of these various department writers is called 
an editor because his copy goes to the printer without 
passing through the hands of a copyreader or another 

Other Branches. If the newspaper has a Sunday sup- 
plement or a special Sunday edition, it has a Sunday or 
supplement editor who devotes his time to preparing the 
content of the special pages that are folded in with the 
regular news pages. Many city papers also have an art 
department, composed of artists, cartoonists, and photo- 
graphers who prepare illustrations. Another very im- 
portant member of the editorial staff is the librarian who 
keeps up files of information easily accessible on a mo- 
ment's notice. One part of his files, called the "morgue," 
consists of a collection of biographical facts and photo- 
graphs of prominent men that may be put together into 
an obituary sketch whenever the prominent man is in any 
way connected with the day's news. 


Perhaps the copy editor's part in newspaper making 
will be clearer if we follow the career of a story through 
the various parts of the office of an afternoon newspaper. 


The story was suggested to the city editor, let us say, by 
a morning paper's report to the effect that the state leg- 
islature was considering a bill for the authorization of 
paid "civic secretaries" to look after "social centers." 
He entered the idea in his day book and gave the assign- 
ment to Jack Robbins, one of his reporters: "Robbins, 
go and ask the mayor what he thinks of the appointment 
of civic secretaries. Ask him if he thinks it will aid the 
social centers. You've been out to the Webster School 
at every meeting and know all about it." That was the 
way the story began. It might have originated in some 
other way; some reporter might have picked it up on 
his run or some social center worker might have tele- 
phoned it to the office. Robbins went to the mayor's of- 
fice, at any rate, and after a while returned with the 
tidings that the mayor thought it a fine idea. "Did he 
have much to say?" asked the city editor. "A barrelful," 
answered Robbins and he briefly outlined the mayor's 
ideas. "Write half a column on it, playing up the mayor's 
point that it will increase fifty per cent the public's use of 
public property." 

Robbins wrote the story and placed it on the city 
editor's desk. Other stories were coming in with it from 
other writers, some from other reporters, some from 
rewrite men sitting at the telephone, some from the 
telegraph desk, and even some from outsiders seeking 
needed publicity. The city editor glanced at Robbins' 
story and handed it to his head copyreader with the 
instructions "Cut it to five hundred words; put a little 
more punch in the lead; give it a No. 8 head." The 
head copyreader, whose desk was piled high, passed the 
story and the instructions to one of his assistants. But 


first he made a record: "Civic Sect. Mayor 500 
Robbins No. 810:15." 

The copyreader read through the story, correcting a 
misspelled word here, straightening out a grammatical 
construction there, consulting the telephone directory for 
the initials of a social center worker mentioned, toning 
down an overenthusiastic paragraph, brightening up a 
bit of summary with some new verbs, and changing the 
typographical style to suit the style sheet over his desk. 
The editing finished, he turned back to the first page and 
put more punch into the lead by incorporating a striking 
expression that he found buried in the last paragraph. 
Then skimming through he crossed out sentences here, 
paragraphs there, useless words and phrases in other 
places, until he estimated that what was left was about 
five hundred words long. On page 3 he sliced out a long 
paragraph by cutting through the manuscript above and 
below the paragraph with his shears, pasted a blank sheet 
of copy paper in its place, and wrote a summary of the 
paragraph's contents in one-third as many words. When 
he had finished the editing, he took the first page again 
and wrote in the blank half above the lead the content of 
a three-deck headline of the style known in the office as 
No. 8. Beside the head he wrote "No. 8" with a circle 
around it. At the top of the sheet he wrote "Civic Sect. 
Mayor," and folded the sheets together ready to hand to 
the copy boy. Just then the city editor called, "Who's 
got that interview with the mayor? Here's one with 
the president of the school board to add to it/' The 
copyreader turned to the last page of the manuscript, 
crossed out the mark "# $ J" that indicated the end 
of the story, and wrote in its place, "More." After the 


copy boy had taken the manuscript to the composing 
room, the second interview reached his desk via the head 
copyreader and his first move was to write at its head 
"Folo Civic Sect. Mayor." 

When the copy reached the composing room, it was 
placed on the desk of the copy cutter. After glancing 
at its length, he pasted the five sheets together end to end 
in a long string and cut the story up into three pieces, or 
"takes," more or less equal in length, taking care in each 
case to cut at the end of the paragraph. The headline 
constituted the fourth take. At the head of the first sheet 
he wrote "C. I," on the next he wrote "C. 2," on the 
next "C. 3." As the boy took it from his hands, he 
wrote in his record "Civic Sect Mayor 10:33 C. I 
4." The boy took the three takes to three linotype 
operators designated by the copy cutter and in a few 
moments each of the three was setting up his part of the 
story. In this way, the entire story was in type in the 
time it took one operator to set one-third of it one-third 
of the time it would have taken one man to set the entire 
story. Take No. 2 was finished first and the operator 
sent it to the "bank" man who makes up the stories. 
While the bank man was placing take No. 2 in the center 
of a galley, chalked "C" according to the copy cutter's 
schedule, take No. 3 came to him and he placed it below 
take No. 2; then take No. I and the headline came for 
the head of the galley. At the bottom of the galley he 
turned over the slug to indicate "More to come." The 
bank man therefore held the galley until the interview 
with the president of the school board came along known 
as "Follow Civic Sect Mayor" and labeled C. 57. As 
this was marked "End," he turned the galley over to 


another printer and cleared his bank. The galley was 
then taken to a proof press and a printer "pulled a proof" 
of it. In a small glass-inclosed office in the corner of the 
composing room a proofreader read the proof aloud to 
an assistant who followed the reading with the original 
copy. With the corrections marked on the margin, the 
proof went back to the original operators for revision. 
They set up the new lines to be inserted in the galley in 
place of the faulty lines. The galley was then "revised" 
and revised proofs were pulled. One copy of it went to 
the proofreader for a second reading, another went to the 
news editor, and a third to the managing editor. 

Meantime many other stories had followed the same 
course and were in type and proof form. By one o'clock 
several of the back pages of the paper had been "made 
up" and "put to bed" on the stereotyper's stone. About 
two o'clock the news editor gathered up a bundle of 
proofs marked "Front Page" and started for the com- 
posing room to "close up." Just before he left his desk, 
the managing editor stepped out of his office and said 
to the city editor, "Kill that interview with the president 
of the school board; he just telephoned me that he'd 
give us some better stuff tomorrow." The word was 
passed on and the news editor drew a line through the 
"Civic Sect. Mayor Follow" on his proof. Then he went 
on to the composing room and with the guidance of a 
"dummy" diagram he had made up beforehand he started 
taking the first-page stories from their galleys and 
directed the placing of them in the front-page "chase." 
He was nearly through when a copy boy came down with 
the instructions from the editorial room, "Hold front 
page for fire story." A reporter had just telephoned in 


that a leading hotel was on fire. It was fifteen minutes 
before press time but that was time enough for a rewrite 
man to dash off two hundred words about the fire while 
a copyreader wrote a headline for it. Ten minutes later 
the story was in type, revised, and on the make-up stone. 
But this was more copy than the news editor had counted 
on and he had too much type for the page about three 
stickfuls. As the other pages were closed and there was 
no time to open them up for a "break-over" of any front- 
page story, the news editor quickly threw away the last 
paragraphs of three of his stories. One of them was 
the interview with the mayor. It is now down to four 
hundred words. He locked up the form, leaving the 
upper six inches of the two right-hand columns empty 
for sport "fudge," and sent the page to the stereotypers. 
A stereotyper quickly laid a wet papier-mache matrix 
over the first page form, passed it under a roller and 
pushed it into a steam table. In four minutes he re- 
leased the press, drew the form out, pasted a few strips 
of cardboard in the hollow places in the back of the hard*- 
baked papier-mache matrix, and sent the type form back 
to the news editor. The matrix was then slipped in the 
circular casting box of an automatic plate-making ma- 
chine and in a few minutes it had served as a mold for 
the casting of half a dozen curved stereotype plates. 
Shaved and trimmed and cooled as they passed out of 
the plate machine, the plates were carried to the press 
room and bolted upon the proper rolls of several rotary 
presses. The plates for the other pages were already in 
place and a pressman was setting the latest news into 
the "fudge" roll. The news consisted of a handful of 
linotype slugs which read, "World Series Score 2 to o at 


End of Sixth Inning/' and carried the score by innings 
up to the last moment. When the last fudge bolt was 
twisted tight, the signal was given and the rotaries started 
grinding out copies of the "Afternoon Edition" at the 
rate of many hundreds per minute. On the front page 
of each was the interview with the mayor. . Inside of 
a short time, final score of the game had come in over the 
telegraph wire in the press room, a linotype machine 
standing beside one of the presses had set it up in new 
slugs, the presses were then stopped long enough for a 
pressman to change the slugs in the fudge roll so as to 
include the final score of the game. The mayor's inter- 
view occupied the same place as before. 

In the meanwhile, more complete news of the hotel 
fire had come to the office and a two-column story was 
in type. Th news editor remade the front-page form 
so as to include it. The fudge space was omitted, but 
even then there was not enough space and he was forced 
to cut down some of the other stories. Among others, 
the mayor's interview was cut to three hundred words 
and by the time the presses were printing the next edition 
it was a very much less prominent story than when the 
reporter wrote it. 

By the time the presses had printed enough copies 
to make up the "Home Edition" for the newsboys, the 
news editor had remade the paper for the "Mail Edi- 
tion." Page by page, he had opened up the forms of the 
four or five news pages and inserted national news for 
local news and changed their content. When he reached 
the front page he decided that the mayor's interview 
was not of interest to people outside the city. Rather 
than throw it out entirely, he picked up its lead from 


the first-page form and slipped it into the miscellany col- 
umn headed "City Items" on the fifth page. In the 
papers that reached the out-of-town subscribers the re- 
porter's original eight-hundred-word interview had dwin- 
dled to seventy-five t words, but not a line of it had been 

Into this finished newspaper, every employee in the 
plant had added his share. The business department 
had obtained and put into copy many columns of adver- 
tising, both classified and display. The circulation depart- 
ment had prepared for the marketing of the edition, 
through paid subscriptions and street sales. The me- 
chanical force had set up and paged many thousand of 
linotype slugs and individual pieces of type, besides stereo- 
typing and printing thousands of copies. The editorial 
department had supplied from 60,000 to 100,000 words 
of new reading matter, all duly classified. The editorial 
writers had contributed two or three columns of edi- 
torials; .the department editors and special writers had 
turned out a column or a page each. The reporters and 
correspondents had prepared two or three times as much 
reading .matter as was needed, and the copyreaders had 
boiled this down, composed headlines for it, and reduced 
it to the uniform style of the newspaper. The work 
done by the newspaper plant for this one edition was 
greater than that required to write and print several 
books and the plant had accomplished it in less than 
twenty-four hours. By the time the presses were at work 
on the last edition, every desk and bench throughout the 
plant was cleared for action and work had begun on 
the issue to follow less than twenty-four hours later. 



The copy editor's part in the work is an important 
part, even though it is a modest one and without fame. 
A reader comes to know the newspaper's writers from 
their signed articles, their visits as newsgatherers, and 
their opinions on the editorial page. But he is seldom 
aware that such a person as the copy editor exists. He 
does not know that it is the copyreader who reduces all 
this written matter, coming from the pens and the type- 
writers of many scribes, to the uniform style and quality 
which characterizes the newspaper itself. He does not 
know that it is the copy editor who is the watch dog 
that wards off errors and libelous statements, besides 
writing the headlines that catch the reader's eye and 
sum up the news so that he can read the entire paper in 
a few moments. 

The work done by the copy editor requires a broader 
training and a larger store of knowledge than almost any 
other post in the newspaper office. Certainly it requires 
much more than that demanded of the reporter or corre- 
spondent. To edit copy swiftly and accurately, the desk 
man must have a thorough understanding of English 
grammar and diction, must know news value more thor- 
oughly than the average reporter does, and must be 
acquainted with the intricacies of the libel law. He must 
know his own city inside and out, must know the affairs 
of the nation, and must be on more than speaking terms 
with all the great questions and thoughts of the 'day. 
He must know type and printing processes as thoroughly 
as his printers. Headline writing in itself is an art that 
can be developed only by much training and knowledge 


of .typography. The mere summarizing of an idea whose 
expression has taken several hundred words is task 
enough, but to make that summary fit a typographical 
scheme mapped out in unit letters and spaces is much 
more difficult. 

The young desk man should remember that the duties 
of his position require above all that he be a critic of the 
first water and also that he be enough of a writer to 
recast instantly the feeble attempts of other writers. 
But half the difficulties of his work will be met by a 
proper knowledge of its requirements. Only study will 
point out these requirements, for no city editor has time 
to put his assistants through a course of instruction. In 
this study be will find that a good textbook is the work of 
other copy editors, as shown in the newspapers they edit. 
This textbook is merely a summary of observations of 
the methods of work of many copy editors. 

Constructive Journalism 

In the midst of all the technical details, the newspaper 
desk man must not lose sight of the fact that there is an 
element in his work far more important than mere me- 
chanical skill and expertness. It is power and leadership 
the opportunity to wield a potent influence, for good 
or bad, upon thousands of readers and subsequently upon 
the community and the nation. For his is not a skilled 
trade, but a profession with ideals and ethics and aspira- 
tions. The newspaper man who is not aware of this 
quality in his work is behind the times. 

What has the desk man to do with "constructive jour- 
nalism" ? Is it not rather the concern of the owner and 
editor-in-chief? The answer is that it matters not what 


lofty, or lowly, ideals the editor may have nor what tone 
he wishes to achieve, he is powerless to carry them out 
unless his desk men and reporters understand them and 
cooperate with him. In the newspaper, details count for 
more than the total. It is the individual headline, the 
individual adjective, the individual inaccuracy, the indi- 
vidual error of grammar, that gives a newspaper a good 
or bad reputation. These are in the hands of the desk 
man. He must know the big movements in modern 
journalism, to help keep his paper abreast of them. 

He must not overlook his responsibility to the English 
language. If the newspaper is the only reading matter 
that comes to the hands of thousands of readers, its in- 
fluence on the mother tongue is greater than that of the 
schools, the church, and all other printed matter. Set- 
ting the standards of daily speech, teaching the language 
to the young and to the immigrant, the American news- 
paper through its reporters and copyreaders may de- 
stroy the mother tongue or preserve it in all its richness 

and beauty. 


1. Begin systematic study of well-known newspapers. Ana- 
lyze a different newspaper each week, paying particular attention 
to the class topic of the week, and embody the results in a 
5oo-word weekly report. Prepare headline schedule of each 

2. Carry on critical study of the desk work evidenced in all 
available newspapers. Find examples of all practices discussed 
in this book. 

3. A good "copyreader's eye" may be developed by reediting 
front pages of local newspapers, marking etery error* Thfa 
should be done again and again on different papers. 

4. Make a diagram to visualize the typical newspaper staff. 


5. Trace a story through a local newspaper office. 

6. Note local practices that differ from those presented in 
this chapter. 

7. Study the local newspaper learn the names of owners 
from published statement ; note extent of office organization and 
names of persons in various positions; note advertising and 
subscription rates; visit mechanical departments. 

8. Analysis of a Newspaper. Each student should bring the 
same issue of the same newspaper and together analyze it, story 
by story, to see what it is made of and how it is made: 

Things to be noted in each story are: I. Original tip and 
assignment. 2. Sources of information. 3. How reporter 
worked. 4. If dateline story, what agency brought it. 5. Struc- 
ture, emphasis, method of writing. 6. Evidences of copyreading. 
7. Kind of headline and relation to story. 8. Evaluation of news 
of the story. 9. Emphasis given by make-up. 10. Kind of reader 
interested, n. Degree of interest to any and all readers. 12. 
Whether story is as effective as possible. 

Other things that may be noted in newspapers (measure 
column inches with footrule) : I. Number and kinds of sub- 
jects on front page. 2. Whatever policy evidenced in news. 
3. Relation to political party. 4. Kinds of news emphasized. 
5. What is its definition of news? 6. Proportion of local and 
outside news. 7. Competition in local field. 8. Amount of 
material supplied by each person or department mentioned in 
above chapter. 9. Press associations and others news gathering 
agencies employed. 10. Amount of special correspondent ma- 
terial, ii. Use of standard local news runs and sources. 12. 
Whafr stories on special assignment. 13. Evidence of use of 
"datebook." 14. Follow and rewrite stories. 15. Reprint matter 
and miscellany. 16. Forecast follows on stories used. 17. Devel- 
opment of local ends. 18. Is routine news classified? 

19. Use of illustrations and their source. 20. Use or misuse 
of banner headline. 21. Typographical style compared with 
class style sheet or Appendix 11. 22. System of subheads and 


division heads. 23. Headline schedule form, structure, typog- 
raphy of headlines. 24. Relation of display to possible sensa- 
tionalism. 25. Use of by-lines, local and telegraph. 

26. Display advertisements local v. foreign number, size, 
kinds of business. 27. Size and technique of classified ad section 
special promotion devices. 28. Circulation and promotion 

29. Syndicate matter kind, source, credit lines. 30. Smaller 
regular features source. 31. Comic strips source, position. 
32. Cartoons source, position, subject. 33. Humor column 
source. 34. Other non-news matter source and kind. 

35. Make-up and content of editorial page. 36. Analyze edi- 
torials local or non-local subjects, timely, expository or argu- 
mentative. 37. Rest of editorial page. 

38. Departments character, editors, source of material. 39. 
Sport department size, local v. telegraph, syndicate, press asso- 
ciation, number of sports, amateur v. professional, relation to 
betting, style. 40. Social news and personals. 41. Woman's 
page subjects, material, source. 42. Markets. 



IN all publication work be it newspaper, magazine, 
or book there is always an intermediate step between 
the written manuscript and the composed type, known 
as copyreading, or editing. Since man first began to 
multiply his written ideas, there has always been a third 
person between the writer and the printer to "edit" the 
manuscript. His office is that of corrector, auditor, or 
checker. In the magazine or book publishing office he 
is known as an editor. In the newspaper office he goes 
by the more commonplace title of copyreader, since the 
newspaper "editor" is ordinarily occupied with other 
things beside the editing of copy. To avoid confusion in 
our discussion of his duties, we shall call this intermediate 
person simply the copyreader and his work copyreading. 

The work of the copyreader consists in preparing 
manuscript for the printer. He works with other men's 
penned or typewritten manuscript and his only tool is a 
large soft lead pencil. He rarely does any writing him- 
self but he often develops sufficient individuality in his 
alteration of manuscript to be cordially disliked by some 
reporters. However true may be their accusations against 
him, he is a very necessary member of every newspaper 
staff, and the tone of our publications would suffer with- 
out his work. To rectify errors of fact, spelling, gram* 


mar, punctuation, typographical style, and sentence struc- 
ture, to tone down the bubbling exuberance of some 
reporters, to brighten up the dead matter-of-factness of 
others, and to write the necessary interpretation in others 
constitute his task, and the extent to which he brings his 
own individuality into the task is entirely a matter of his 
personality. If an error or a libelous statement "gets 
past" him to appear on the printed page of many thou- 
sands of newspapers, it is not usually the original writer 
of the article who receives the blame, but the copyreader, 
who should have "caught" the error when he edited the 

In the large American newspaper office, the copyreader 
works directly under the charge of the city editor who 
directs the newspaper's staff of reporters. He is the 
"desk man" who is always in the office and far away 
from the glamour of newspaper reportorial work. He 
is, in fact, the assistant of the city editor and his office 
grew out of the overcrowding of that dignitary's duties. 
In smaller, poorer offices, where the income of the paper 
puts narrow limits on the size of the staff, this assistant 
to the city editor is lacking and his work is done by the 
city editor. When a copyreader is added to the staff, he 
simply takes over a portion of the city editor's work 
that of editing copy and writing headlines. The city 
editor still has charge of the reporters and directs the 
writing of stories. 

Morning newspapers of larger size usually have two or 
more separate "copy desks" the city desk, handling local 
copy; the telegraph desk, handling news from outside the 
city; and perhaps a sport desk. Some metropolitan news- 
papers have separate cable desks, and a few have desks 


for business and market news. Because of the greater 
speed required in their many editions, afternoon news- 
papers are quite generally adopting the "universal," or 
"combination/ 1 desk to handle news of all kinds. Smaller 
newspapers usually have but one copy desk. In current 
vernacular, the head copyreader is "the slot man" because 
he sits "in the slot" inside the semicircular table at which 
the copyreaders work. The desk men around him are 
"rim men" for they work "on the rim" of the table. 
Lately there has been a growing specialization among 
"rim men," whereby each handles one or more particular 
kinds of copy e.g. local politics, labor news, "social 
unrest," etc. 

When a reporter comes in from his run or assignment 
with the facts of a news story, he reports to the city 
editor and receives directions as to the length of the story 
he is to write, its character, and the feature that is to be 
emphasized in it. As soon as he has completed the story, 
he takes the copy directly to the city editor. If he has 
no copyreaders, the city editor must himself prepare the 
story for the printer. But if he has desk men to assist 
him, he glances through the story to note its content and 
then passes it over to one of his copyreaders for editing 
and headline. He usually accompanies the copy with a 
few brief verbal directions, to guide the copyreader and 
to indicate the kind of headline desired. 

What a copyreader does to each story that passes 
through his hands may be summarized thus : 

1. Corrects errors of fact or expression. 

2. Enforces the rules of "office style." 

3. Trims or expands story to prescribed length. 

4. Guards again libelous matter. 


5. Polishes or improves English of the story. 

6. Eliminates expressions of opinion. 

7. Coordinates story with other news of day. 

8. Puts on necessary marks to guide printer. 

9. Writes headline, subheads, captions, etc. 
10. "Slugs" story for record and make-up. 

Each copyreader has his own way of accomplishing all 
these quickly and thoroughly. He may do it in one 
reading, in two, or even in three. At any rate, whatever 
his own shortcut, he reads it through carefully to correct 
all the errors in it and makes all the alterations on the 
manuscript. He may perhaps rewrite the lead or he 
may cut off several paragraphs. Here and there he in- 
serts a word or two to clarify the meaning or crosses 
out half a sentence to eliminate repetition and wordiness. 
When he has finished editing it, the story is in final form, 
with guide-lines and type directions, ready for the printer. 
Then in the blank half -page above the beginning of the 
story, he writes a suitable headline of the size designated 
by the city editor but the writing of the headline is 
another task which will be considered in a separate chap- 
ter. Before he calls the copy boy to send the manuscript 
to the composing room, he makes a record of the sub- 
ject of the story, its length, the name of the reporter who 
wrote it, the size of headline written on the story, and 
the exact time it was sent to the composing room. The 
record may look something like this: "Smith Council 
Meeting 800 No. 8 10 :45." His task would be easy 
if he had only one or two stories to edit and plenty of 
time in which to edit them, but usually the stories are 
coming to him in a continuous stream, as fast as he can 
handle them, and along toward press time he may edit 


several stories at once, page by page, as they come from 
the reporters' typewriters. One moment he is editing 
page 3 of a fire story, the next he is dashing through 
page 5 of the account of a political convention, a minute 
later he is writing a new lead for an interview with one 
of the candidates nominated, and then as the last page of 
the fire reaches his hands he writes the headline to be 
carried above it. He must pass the pages on as rapidly as 
possible so as to keep all of the linotype machines working 
at full capacity. He must therefore hold the content of 
several stories in his mind at once, keep them separate, 
and edit each one as accurately and painstakingly as if 
he were a schoolmaster leisurely marking a bundle of 
student themes. 

Although the copyreader's work combines the writing 
of headlines with the editing of copy and not infrequently 
a bit of proofreading, we are concerned at present only 
with his work of ecliting or copyreading. 


The first thing about his work that the young copy- 
reader must understand thoroughly is that he has been 
employed, not as a writer, but as a corrector of other 
men's writing. His job is to revise and reconstruct, not 
to rewrite. And before he has held his desk position long 
he will come to realize that the ability to revise is quite 
different from the ability to write and that it requires 
the cultivation of very different methods of thinking. 
The young copyreader's first impulse, when he is given a 
badly written story to edit, is to throw the reporter's copy 
into the waste basket and rewrite the story. Very often, 


of course, that is the easiest and quickest way to make the 
story printable. But as a general practice such copyread- 
ing methods involve too much duplication of work for a 
busy newspaper office. If the reporter who was employed 
to write the story is not able to do so, he has no place 
in the office and should be reported to the city editor for 
discharge. More often, however, the fault lies with the 
copyreader, for only a small amount of the copy that 
comes to him is so bad that it must be rewritten. The feel- 
ing that the story must be rewritten is usually the result of 
the copyreader's unconscious inability to subordinate his 
own manner of expression to that of another to see good 
in the writing of others although its qualities may not 
accord with his own ideals of writing. 

A young copyreader must first of all remember that 
his office is merely that of corrector and reviser. If he 
'does not have it at the outset, he must develop the ability 
to correct and revise another's writing, without destroying 
in it evidences of the original writer's personality. As 
he grows older in the work he will learn that there are 
few stories that he cannot whip into shape without rewrit- 
ing, and that the impulse to rewrite is merely an evidence 
of inexperience. 


The established copyreading signs the tools of the 
desk man's trade are few and simple and should be 
thought of as time-saving signals to indicate changes to 
be made in the copy. Their development has been a 
gradual evolution and is not universal. Their usefulness 
depends upon the printer's understanding of them, and 
therefore some offices in which the copyreaders and 


printers have worked together for a long time have a 
more fully developed system of copyreading signs than 
offices in which the employees are more transient. In 
general, the group of signs listed below will be under- 
stood by all printers, except in the smallest country offices, 
and the copyreader may use them with perfect confidence. 
The one thing to remember about them is that they were 
developed by daily use and used accordingly. 

Unlike the signs used in proofreading, these symbols 
used by the editor of copy are not placed in the margin, 
but in the body of the written matter. The reason for 
this difference is simple. When a printer is revising 
proof, he does not read the content of the proof but 
glances down through it to note the corrections; it is 
therefore necessary to indicate corrections in the margin 
so that he will surely see them. In setting up material 
that has been edited, however, the printer must read each 
word and line and needs no signal in the margin to draw 
his attention to a correction. The placing of copyreading 
corrections in the margin muddles the copy and leads to 
confusion. In other words, never "proofread" copy. 
All corrections and marks should be placed above the line 
to which they refer so that the compositor will see them 
before he reaches the words involved. Inserted material 
should be written between the lines or on a separate sheet, 
marked "insert/ 1 never in vertical lines along the margin ; 
since marginal insertions make it difficult for the copy 
cutter to divide the copy into takes. In editing copy, 
furthermore, the copyreader should use a soft black pencil 
and should make heavy black signs that will show dis- 
tinctly in the feeble light that illuminates the copyholder 
of a linotype machine. 





Circles around figures or abbreviations 
indicate that they are to be spelled out. 

Circles around words or numbers 
spelled out indicate that they are to be 
abbreviated or expressed in figures. 

One line under a letter or word indi- 
cates that it is to be set in Italics. (In 
some offices single underscoring, or a 
wavy line below, indicates bold-face type.) 

Two lines under a letter or word in- 
dicate that it is to be set in small capital 

Three lines under a letter or a word 
indicate that it is to be set in capital 

An oblique line, from right to left, 
through a capital letter, indicates that it 
should be a small letter. 
^- * Letters are brought together by a half 

*^ /^ circle below. 

Letters are separated by oblique lines 
f rom j e f t to rigi^ 

A cross, or a period in a circle, is used 
for a period. 

~p Quotation marks, either double or 

Term. single, are often set off with half circles 

to indicate whether they are beginning 
or end marks. 

The beginning of each paragraph is 
indicated by a paragraph mark or an 
angle. The paragraph mark is always 
used to mark a new paragraph, not in- 
tended by the author. 


Elements to be transposed are encircled 
in a i ong fig^e 8. 

A caret indicates the spot where ma* 
terial is to be inserted. 

The end of a story is indicated by the 
end mark (ft) or the number 30 in circle. 

The "run-in" or "bridge" line is used 
to connect two consecutive elements 
separated by material that has been 
crossed out. 

The use of these signs may be illustrated by the follow- 
ing piece of newspaper copy edited and marked for the 
printer : 

^ta* fttyt Srrt* 

probably family b*rntdT*<U^grjla th worts of ta 
AUM anMi^n*fSo\fby an icploalon of gsaoltnQ 
AU of tte(g)ffMffi^raME5 MOODA floor Itap^froi 

la tto 

floor* Without wain* 

t tte td it is thought that the r.tort 



Although armed with all the copyreading signs and 
the ability to use them, the copyreader will find his 
efficiency greatly increased if he analyzes and studies the 
errors to look for in the copy that passes through his 
hands. There are certain errors -that are likely to appear 
in any copy and a classification of them may assist him in 
catching them all. Knowing what errors to look for is 
easily half his work. 

Reporters' mistakes in general may be classified in the 
following six general groups : 

A. Errors of Expression 

1. Grammatical errors 

2. Errors in spelling 

3. Errors in punctuation 

B. Typographical Style 

1. Capitals 

2. Figures 

3. Punctuation 

4. Quotation marks 

5. Addresses and titles 

C. Inaccuracies 

1. Misstatement of fact 

2. Misrepresentation of fact through omission of 

qualifying facts 

3. Inaccuracy in names (in spelling, initials, or 

4. Carelessness in handling and copying figures 

5. Mistakes in dates 

D. News Values 

x. Inadequate lead 

2. Failure to begin with the feature 


3. Inadequate summary of long story 

4. Failure to follow up the feature 

5. Failure to prepare for cutting in make-up 

6. Lack of paragraph unity 

7. Comment and opinion 

E. Diction and Style 

1. Use of long sentences and complicated grammar 

2. Use of unen phatic sentence beginnings 

3. Failure to use short, compact paragraphs 

4. Use of unemphatic paragraph beginnings 

5. Wordiness 

6. Use of general rather than concrete, definite nouns 

7. Failure to use bright, vivid verbs 

8. Lack of dignity of expression, especially in the 

use of nicknames, undignified inference, and 

F. Libehus Statements 

A. Errors of Expression 

i. Grammatical Errors. Among the grammatical 
errors that occur in reporters' copy, certain ones appear 
with sufficient frequency to bei watched for constantly. 
They are : 

i. The lack of agreement between subject and verb, espe- 
cially when the two are widely separated, when the subject 
consists of one or more singular nouns, or when the predicate 
noun is of a different number: 

A different outlay of funds and assets were ordered. 
None of the employees were on duty. 
The man with the gun and his accomplice was convicted. 
The backbone of a newspaper are the news stories. 
There has been in every city examples of such conditions. 
Color and brushwork is the basis of his technique. 


Each family must decide for themselves. 
Neither the driver nor his passenger were hurt 

2. The use of dangling participles which have no definite 
grammatical relation to the remainder of the sentence and 
therefore are indefinite and lacking in emphasis : 

The policeman stood his ground, the robbers fleeing. 
The train having gone, the reporter hired a taxicab. 
They were married in secret, Justice Smith officiating. 
Any man under 30 is eligible, thus opening a large field. 
Pay checks are left at the bank, thereby facilitating payment. 
Wisconsin easily defeated Michigan, the score being 12 to 6. 

3. The separation of relative clauses from antecedents so 
that the reference is not clear: 

He saw the ladder against the wall that the robber had used. 
It was the pleasant secretary of the chief whom I met. 

4. The use of a sentence (unquoted) as the subject of 
is or was: 

The bank is on firm footing is the statement made by 

5. The use of a conjunction between a relative clause 
and the principal clause : 

He bought the red auto, but which had no self-starter. 

He saw the man from the station and whom the sheriff wanted. 

6. The use of a subordinate when or where clause at the 
end of a sentence to express later action usually the most 
important action in the sentence : 

We were walking down Main street when suddenly a man fell. 
He moved to Dakota where he later became wealthy. 

7. The relation of pronouns to their antecedents : 

A crowd of we boys went fishing. 
When we met him, he said that he had not seen him. 
When a child sees something they want, their parents must 
come with them to buy. 
Every student will select their own course. 


As the servant's quarters were on the third floor, they were 
not aware of the fire. 
It was "Filipino Night/' and the program was given by them. 

8. The position of adverbs in relation to the words they 

To indefinitely postpone the action is his proposal. 
He said he only wanted to get his pay. 
He repeated the summons again gruffly. 

9. The tense of infinitive after a past tense verb : 

It was unnecessary for you to have been there. 
He hoped to have come with me. 

10. The omission of auxiliaries: 

One trainman was killed and three injured in a wreck 

11. The omission of the infinitive sign: 

He began to advertise, dress up his windows, and in general 
pruce up his business. 

12. The use of a relative clause without a noun or pro- 
noun antecedent : 

The revising of the tariff cannot be done effectively by Con- 
gress, which is often overlooked. 

Jones is said to be against the road program, which is a 
wrong impression. 

The government formally took over the work, which insured 
immediate action. 

Seven hints for better grammar are the following: 

1. Remember that clear, logical writing is the reflection 
of dear, logical thinking, and that doubtful grammar usually 
evidences cloudy ideas. 

2. Develop the habit of thinking out sentences before 
writing or editing them. 

3. Watch for bad grammar in all you read and practice 
correcting it to develop the instinct for good usage. 

4. Learn the art of transposition. If a sentence is not 


smooth, correct, and clear, juggle its parts around into the 
proper places, instead of trying to patch it up with commas. 

5. Remember that English is the most elastic language in 
the world and that there is scarcely an idea that cannot be 
expressed in several different grammatical ways. Try sev- 
eral instead of being content with the first that occurs to you. 

6. Notice that "a sentence badly started" is the most 
fruitful source of bad grammar. Instead of trying to patch 
it up, begin it again in some other way. 

7. When in doubt about the correctness of an expression 
or a construction, instead of laboring with it and arguing 
about it, try some other form that you know is correct. 
The present participle, for instance, is a cause of much diffi- 
culty ; avoid it, therefore, unless you are sure of its correct- 

2. Errors in Spelling. There is, of course, an in- 
finite number of misspellings that may creep into re- 
porters' copy and there are few rules to help the copy- 
reader in catching them ; his only resource is a dictionary, 
a good memory, and a vigilant eye. But there are some 
varieties of misspellings that are fnore common than 
others ; for instance : 

(a) The misuse of doubled letters, especially before a 
suffix. In most cases a knowledge of the deriva- 
tion of the words will assist here: repeated, 
omitted, referred, occurring. 

(&) The failure to drop the final silent e before a suffix: 
judgment, statement. 

(r) The forming of plurals of nouns ending in y or ey: 
chimneys, families. 

(d) The combination in one word of certain pairs of 
words: all right (alright), percent (always two 


As the servant's quarters were on the third floor, they were 
not aware of the fire. 
It was "Filipino Night/' and the program was given by them. 

8. The position of adverbs in relation to the words they 
modify : 

To indefinitely postpone the action is his proposal. 
He said he only wanted to get his pay. 
He repeated the summons again gruffly. 

9. The tense of infinitive after a past tense verb : 

It was unnecessary for you to have been there. 
He hoped to have come with me. 

10. The omission of auxiliaries: 

One trainman was killed and three injured in a wreck 

11. The omission of the infinitive sign: 

He began to advertise, dress up his windows, and in general 
spruce up his business. 

12. The use of a relative clause without a noun or pro- 
noun antecedent : 

The revising of the tariff cannot be done effectively by Con- 
gress, which is often overlooked. 

Jones is said to be against the road program, which is a 
wrong impression. 

The government formally took over the work, which insured 
immediate action. 

Seven hints for better grammar are the following: 

1. Remember that clear, logical writing is the reflection 
of clear, logical thinking, and that doubtful grammar usually 
evidences cloudy ideas. 

2. Develop the habit of thinking out sentences before 
writing or editing them* 

3. Watch for bad grammar in all you read and practice 
correcting it to develop the instinct for good usage. 

4. Learn the art of transposition. If a sentence is not 


smooth, correct, and clear, juggle its parts around into the 
proper places, instead of trying to patch it up with commas. 

5. Remember that English is the most elastic language in 
the world and that there is scarcely an idea that cannot be 
expressed in several different grammatical ways. Try sev- 
eral instead of being content with the first that occurs to you. 

6. Notice that "a sentence badly started" is the most 
fruitful source of bad grammar. Instead of trying to patch 
it up, begin it again in some other way. 

7. When in doubt about the correctness of an expression 
or a construction, instead of laboring with it and arguing 
about it, try some other form that you know is correct. 
The present participle, for instance, is a cause of much diffi- 
culty ; avoid it, therefore, unless you are sure of its correct- 

2. Errors in Spelling. There is, of course, an in- 
finite number of misspellings that may creep into re- 
porters' copy and there are few rules to help the copy- 
reader in catching them ; his only resource is a dictionary, 
a good memory, and a vigilant eye. But there are some 
varieties of misspellings that are fnore common than 
others; for instance: 

(a) The misuse of doubled letters, especially before a 

suffix. In most cases a knowledge of the deriva- 
tion of the words will assist here: repeated, 
omitted, referred, occurring. 

(b) The failure to drop the final silent e before a suffix: 

judgment, statement. 

(c) The forming of plurals of nouns ending in y or ey: 

chimneys, families. 

X<f) The combination in one word of certain pairs of 
words: all right (alright), percent (always two 


(?) The splitting of certain words into two words : some- 
thing, sometime, anybody. 

(/) The misuse of ance for ence: occurrence, counte- 

(g) Misuse of digraph ei and ie: receive and believe. 
A good way to remember these is to note that if / 
precedes the digraph, i follows /; if c precedes, e 
follows the c, as in Alice. 

(h) The confusion of two words of different spelling 
and meaning, but the same pronunciation: corre- 
spondent, corespondent. 

3. Errors in Punctuation. To many young writers, 
punctuation is a serious problem because to them it is a 
mere matter of arbitrary rules. But if they will consider 
punctuation marks as tools that have been developed by 
the necessity to indicate the breaks in written speech, as 
pauses and inflection mark them in spoken speech, they 
will be able to formulate very logical rules for their guid- 
ance. The chief 'fault that the copyreader will discover 
in reporters' copy is excessive punctuation, and he can 
adopt the maxim of eliminating every punctuation mark 
for which there is not some definite, logical reason. Even 
if he carries this to an extreme degree, he will do less 
damage than the writer who uses too much punctuation 
too few points cause less confusion and easier reading 
than too many. Every point also takes up almost an em 
of space. 

The following rules of punctuation will, in general, 
cover most cases that arise in newspaper writing, since 
the simple sentence structure demanded in the newspaper 
office makes unnecessary many of the rules followed in 
literary writing. 


Use the comma: 

1. To separate the clauses of a compound sentence only 

when the subject changes. 

2. To separate the clauses of a complex sentence only 

when the dependent clause precedes the principal 

3. To separate the succeeding members of a list whether 

the members be nouns, coordinate adjectives or 
adverbs, parallel clauses, parallel phrases, or any 
other parts of speech. The comma is needed be- 
tween the last two members of the list, whether or 
not there is a conjunction, because the purpose of 
the comma is to indicate the extent of each member 
rather than the omission of a possible conjunction. 

4. In pairs in the places where our forefathers might 

have used parenthesis marks to set off explan- 
atory material which has no grammatical place in 
the sentence. This includes substantives in direct 
address, appositives, absolute phrases, geographical 
names explaining preceding names, non-restrictive 
phrases and clauses, and all other parenthetical 

5. (N. B. There is no need of commas in newspaper 

writing to indicate pauses or to avoid misunder- 
standing outside the above cases. The fact that 
a comma seems necessary is sufficient proof that 
there is something wrong with the sentence. Good 
newspaper grammar is so simple, direct, and 
straightforward that no artificial explanation, in the 
the way of commas sown broadcast, is needed.) 

Use the semicolon: 

1. To separate groups of individual members and modi* 

fiers in a list following a colon. 

2. To separate the clauses of a compound sentence when 


they are not separated by a conjunction. It is 
understood that only "and," "but," and "or" can 
qualify as conjunctions in such a case. 
3 [(N. B. There is no reason in newspaper writing to 
add to the above rule that the semicolon is often 
needed with a conjunction simply because the sev- 
eral clauses are so complicated or so bespattered 
with commas that the line of division is not dear. 
This defense is sufficient evidence that the gram- 
mar is bad. Such a sentence should be broken into 
two or simplified. More punctuation marks add 

Ufe the colon: 

I. To precede a list or a quotation which begins with a 
new paragraph. 

Use the dash: 

1. To mark an intentional break in grammar. 

2. To emphasize the element which follows it. 

Use the hyphen: 

1. In compound numbers and fractions; in compound 

adjectives ; in titles composed of two or more words ; 
after one-syllable prefixes when (a) the last vowel 
of the prefix precedes the same vowel, and (&) the 
prefix is attached to a proper noun. 

2, r (N. B. The modern tendency is toward less hyphen- 

ation and the putting together of words into an 
unhyphenated word. In general, compound nouns 
are less often hyphenated than compound adjec- 

The commonest punctuation errors of which reporters 
are found guilty are the following: 

i. The omission of the second in a pair of commas 
(see Rule 4). 


2. The omission of the comma before the conjunction 

in a list (see Rule 3). 

3. The use of unnecessary commas. 

4. The use of a comma instead of a semicolon when 

a conjunctive adverb separates two independent 
clauses (see Rule 2). 

5. The use of semicolons in places where commas 

will do the work. 

6. The use of colons in place of commas and semi- 


7. Excessive use of the dash to remedy loose con- 


With reference to other punctuation marks not dis- 
cussed above, the copyreader will find it necessary to keep 
watch for the following errors : 

8. The omission of apostrophes in the possessive case 

and in contractions. 

9. The omission of periods after abbreviations. 

10. The confusion of single and double quotation 


n. The misuse of quotation marks in continuous quo- 
tations of several paragraphs. 
12. The omission of the quotation mark at the end. 
To aid himself in eliminating the many and varied 
errors of expression that often mark the printed page of 
newspapers and magazines, the copyreader will find that 
he can use to advantage a large dictionary and a good 
handbook on English grammar, punctuation, and spelling. 
He must think of grammar and punctuation as a logical 
thing 'developed for practical use. He will often find, 
moreover, that the quickest and easiest way to settle a 
mooted point of grammar or punctuation is to recast the 


sentence into some other form. There are so many possi- 
bilities and varieties of expression in the English language 
that there is little reason to allow a questionable expres- 
sion to pass or even to approach the borderline of argu- 
ment. If the sentence in one form strains grammatical 
rules, he need not stop to puzzle over the intricacies of it, 
but may quickly recast it into some simpler form. 

B. Typographical Style 

Inasmuch as there are many matters of capitalization, 
punctuation, use of figures, etc., that are not absolutely 
definite and may vary in even the best English usage, 
every reputable newspaper office has its own office rules 
to cover many of these matters. Sometimes these office 
rules, known as "typographical style/' are unwritten 
and rather intangible, but often they are embodied 
in compact form in a pocket booklet, or on a card, 
called a "Style Sheet" or "Style Book." The mandates 
of the style sheet are often arbitrary and sometimes rather 
queer, but they have one defense that makes them neces- 
sary and desirable "uniformity in typographical style is 
necessary throughout the publication." For the sake of 
uniformity in its columns, then, every newspaper demands 
that its writers and editors follow its rules of typograph- 
ical style. However arbitrary some of them may seem to 
the copyreader, he must follow them to the letter. Fur- 
thermore, the copyreader is the one who must enforce 
the rules. With a constantly changing staff of reporters 
and a shifting group of journeyman printers in the lino- 
type room, uniformity of typographical style would soon 
go by the board were it not for the man who edits the 
copy. While every one else in the office is trying his best 


to violate them all, it devolves upon the desk man to check 
up every capital letter and every figure to see that it con- 
forms to office style simply to insure uniformity. He 
must come to think of an error in style as seriously as an 
error in grammar, spelling, or punctuation. The result 
will be a "clean" uniform sheet that critics will call "well- 
edited." However trivial a capital letter or a misspelled 
word may seem to the young copyreader, he must remem- 
ber that it is difficult for the reading public to credit the 
accuracy of large statements in a newspaper that is be- 
spattered with minor inaccuracies. The presence of trivial 
errors and lack of uniformity spell to the newspaper 
reader lax office methods and he questions its general 
truth-telling accordingly. 

Usages of typographical style vary in different sections 
of the country ; while the newspapers in several adjoining 
states use "down" style (few capital letters), another 
entire section follows "up" style (many capitals). Some 
general tendencies are: 

x. In capitalization, most newspapers agree in capitaliz- 
ing the following : proper nouns ; months ; days of 
week ; principal words in title of books, plays, lec- 
tures, etc. ; religious denominations ; nouns and pro- 
nouns of Deity; sections of country and. city; races 
and nationalities. 

They disagree in the following: titles following 
names ; Negro ; the final common noun in names of 
associations, companies, societies, and other organi- 
zations; the final common noun in geographical 
names; political party names; names of national, 
state, county, and city buildings, officers, boards, 
etc.; points of compass; common religious terms; 


school and college studies, classes, and degrees; 
seasons of year; a.m. and p.m. 

(N. B. The standard rule for names of books, 
addresses, etc., which are set in capitals and small 
letters, is : Capitalize all words except conjunctions, 
articles, and prepositions of less than four letters 
capitalize first word always e. g. "A Man 
Without a Country" ; "The Lady or the Tiger." 

2. In use of figures, most newspapers spell out small 

numbers and use figures for large numbers, but 
disagree on the dividing line between "small" and 
"large." Some divide at 10; others at 100. The 
division is the basic rule; other figure rules are 
merely exceptions to it. Commas are used to set 
off groups of digits in all numbers except serial 
numbers that is, in numbers that say "how many" 
but not in numbers that are designations, e.g., 
10,587 people, but License No. 13784. 

3. Quotation rules are practically standard in all Ameri- 

can newspapers. 

4. In abbreviation, newspapers disagree, especially in 

titles, names of states after cities, months, and such 
words as street, railway, company, etc. Each style 
sheet, however, leans definitely toward much or 
little abbreviation. 

5. In dates, datelines, and addresses, there is much dis- 


6. In titles, while certain usages are standard, general 

objectionable "drifts" are to be noted, especially 
in smaller newspapers : 

(a) In spite of laxness in some newspapers, the 
best edited still require strict usage in religious and 
denominational titles, including "the Rev." 

(b) Although some newspapers are careless in 
using women's names, the best papers require that 


.Wistf or Mrs. be used with every woman's name 
even in police news. 

(c) According to standard usage, Mr. is not 
used before a full name (John H. Jones) but is 
used before the surname (Mr. Jones) if the man 
deserves it. Partly because Mr. is omitted in 
telegraph copy, to save expense, carelessly edited 
papers are becoming lax in its usage, but the best 
papers follow the standard custom. 

(d) Striking carelessness in the misuse and 
omission of titles of governmental officers is seen 
in some papers. The president, governor, mayor, 
and others are spoken of as Coolidge, Elaine, Kittle- 
son, without even Mr. This practice is bad because 
it fosters disrespect of government among less in- 
telligent and foreign-born readers. 

Common Errors in Style. It is impossible to classify 
all errors in style that occur in reporters' copy beyond the 
extent that they are classified in the average style sheet, 
They are usually concerned with ( i ) the use or misuse 
of capital letters; (2) the use of figures; (3) the overuse 
of abbreviations; (4) the form of street address; (5) the 
handling of titles; (6) the mooted questions of punctua- 
tion; (7) the use of quotation marks. Although rules of 
grammar arid punctuation are often debatable, the copy- 
reader has in typographical style a set of hard and fast 
regulations that he can enforce absolutely. He should 
know his newspaper's style sheet from beginning to end, 
besides understanding its general intent and being able 
to read between the lines of printed rules. If the general 
intent of the style sheet is "down" (that is, it advocates 
the use of small letters instead of capitals when there is 
any option) he should follow out the intent by adopting 


the maxim : "When in doubt, use a small letter." Styles 
in newspaper make-up are changing constantly, and no 
two newspapers have exactly the same ideas of beauty 
in the printed page, but the copyreader must be as ready 
to change his style as his coat and to feel as much at home 
in the new one. (A typical newspaper style sheet is in- 
cluded in this volume, Appendix II, for classroom use in 
the development of accuracy in details.) 

Three Hints for Mastery of Style Sheet: 

1. Note the general tendency of the style sheet in the 

various matters discussed : i.e., whether up or down 
in capitalization; whether dividing figures at 10 or 
100 ; whether toward much or little abbreviation. 
Interpret the rules accordingly. 

2. In reading the style sheet, check the rules that are 

new or unfamiliar to you. Learn them only. 

3. Note the examples after the rules; they usually ex- 

press more than the rules themselves. 

C* Inaccuracies 

Although the commonest criticism of the American 
press is that it is inaccurate, a careful study will indicate 
that newspapers are in general remarkably accurate, con- 
sidering the speed and difficulty under which they gather 
and record news. Unfortunately, however, every error, 
no matter how trivial, is displayed for public inspection. 
Not only are they essentially accurate in the larger aspects 
of their work, but it is to be noted that no other business 
has developed so elaborate a system or spends so much 
money to insure accuracy as does the American news- 
paper. The copyreader is an essential part of this elabo- 
rate system; the chief reason for his existence is to insure 


accuracy. The newspaper profession knows that the 
greatest fault of the average reporter is inaccuracy, and 
the copy desk is provided to counteract this fault. The 
copyreader must realize that his chief duty is to wage 
continual war on inaccuracy, big and little, careless and 
intentional, if his newspaper is to escape the blanket 
accusation of criminal inaccuracy that many critics make 
against American newspapers in general. But the task 
is a difficult one. Inaccuracy in newspaper writing crops 
out in so many and devious ways that it is practically 
impossible to classify all the possibilities. To eliminate 
all the inaccuracies that appear in the copy on his desk, 
the copyreader would need to be practically omniscient. 
The material which he is called upon to edit includes in its 
scope every phase of human activity and every branch of 
human knowledge. To accomplish his task, he would 
need to be a specialist in every art and science. Even so, 
his memory would fail him occasionally, or his watchful- 
ness, and some few glaring misstatements would pass him. 
But there are some approaches to the task within 
reach of any copyreader of average intelligence, if he 
makes a conscious effort to equip himself for the work 
and is determined to uproot as many inaccuracies as pos- 
sible. Although newspaper copy puts no limits on its range 
of subject matter, most of it is concerned with material 
that any alert man can keep in hand if he makes the 
effort. ( i ) To do his work with fair efficiency, the copy- 
reader should be thoroughly acquainted, above all, with 
the city in which his paper is published. He should know 
its geography, its industries, its history, its politics, its 
people, and its interests, as thoroughly as the clergyman 
knows his flock. Fifty per cent of the copy he edits will 


be taken care of by this knowledge. (2) The affairs of 
the nation must be familiar to him its history, its pres- 
ent and past politics, its finance and economics, its promi- 
nent people. (3) So far as possible, the history, politics, 
business, people, and geography of other countries should 
be at his finger tips. (4) He should have a general knowl- 
edge of every subject of general information at the present 
time, whether art or science, material or spiritual. Famil- 
iarity with the technical language of these subjects in- 
creases his efficiency. All of this means that he must 
devote much of his time to reading he must read news- 
papers, magazines, books, pamphlets, everything that 
comes to hand, for the purpose of extending his acquaint- 
ance with the world's affairs. And he cannot rely on 
former reading the interests of the newspaper change 
not by years or decades, but by days and minutes, and 
he must keep up with the changes. But better than all 
the knowledge that he can crowd into his brain is a 
systematic acquaintance with all sources of information. 
If the copyreader is not acquainted with the subject in 
hand, he should at least know where to find the infor- 
mation he needs. 

The inaccuracies that appear in reporters' copy may be 
classified loosely in the following groups : 

I. Misstatement of Fact. This includes both the 
basic facts of his story and the minor facts that make 
up its background. Nothing but a broad fund of knowl- 
edge and common sense will enable the copyreader to 
check up all the facts that appear on his desk. But he 
can do much by putting them all to the test of reasonable- 
ness. A fact or a statement that seems to him unreason- 
able or absurd should never pass unchallenged, even if 


the challenge involves a confession of his own ignorance. 
No statement at all is better than a misstatement. What- 
ever appears absurd to him will appear absurd to the 
paper's readers, and his challenge may result in an inserted 
explanation that will make evident the fact's reliability. 
Analysis of reporters' work will indicate that misstate- 
ments of fact result from these tendencies: 

1. Lack of sufficient knowledge of the news field and of 

conditions and events behind the story. 

2. Lack of sufficient judgment to distinguish information 

from misinformation. 

3. Lack of sufficient questioning in interviews to get a 

clear understanding of the facts. 

4. "Jumping at conclusions" instead of searching for 


5. Unconscious twisting of facts because of "stock" prej- 

udices and notions. 

6. Failure to run down all possible clues. 

7. Reliance upon only one version of the story. 

8. Failure to apply test of reasonableness to facts. 

9. Failure to realize that, while many persons are trying 

to hide their doings from the public, others try to 
mislead the reporter to obtain publicity, to push 
pet schemes, or to make thrusts at enemies or 

10. Lack of understanding of what constitutes "evidence." 

11. Failure to question reliability and fitness of witnesses. 

12. Effort to heighten interest and to make a "bigger 


2. Misrepresentation of Facts through Omission of 
Qualifying Facts. The omission of necessary qualifica- 
tions will often make a true statement appear as inac- 
curate as a false one. This appears most frequently in 


the quotation or explanation of men's statements an4 
opinions. The reporter gives the public their broad gen- 
eral statements and neglects to add the modifications, 
limitations, and reservations, or he reports their negations 
without the affirmations that accompanied them. Very 
often the careless omission of a qualifying phrase or even 
an adjective will make the major statement ridiculous, 
and it is this very fact that enables the copyreader to 
catch the inaccuracy. The best test that he can apply is 
that every fact must meet the demands of his own 
common sense. 

It is well for the copyreader "to put himself in the other 
fellow's shoes" to consider the feelings of the quoted 
speaker when he reads the printed story. Would the copy- 
reader care to take the story in person to have it 
approved? If not, is it really a fair, accurate, and decent 
report? Misquotation in interviews or speech reports is 
a vice of American newspapers which makes a host of 
enemies. Rare is the public speaker who is not a cynic 
about the press. Inaccurate quotation may be due to the 
reporter's reliance on his memory or, more likely, to his 
ignorance of the subject under discussion. Whatever 
it is, the copyreader's job is to check the evil. 

3. Inaccuracy in Names. Not only in attaching the 
right names to the right actors in a story are reporters 
careless, but also in handling a name when it is the right 
one. The copyreader must check the spelling of the name, 
the initials or first names, the address or other identifica- 
tion that accompanies it. The fault of "getting names 
wrong" brings more ridicule than any of the other in- 
accuracies of which the newspaper is guilty. It is im- 
possible for the copyreader to prevent all inaccuracies in 


names, because the compositor may add a few after the 
copy leaves his hands, but he should be sure that every 
name is correct when he reads the copy. In many cases, 
especially in local stories, he can trust to his own knowl- 
edge and memory, but he must not depend too much upon 
them. He must have at hand a city directory, a telephony 
directory, a copy of "Who's Who," and other directories 
of names. It will take him but a moment to run through 
the pages of the directory and verify every name that 
appears in the copy he reads and the moment will be well 
spent. Errors in the use of names are not limited to 
names of persons. The copyreader must verify all geo- 
graphical names, all names of clubs, societies, and organi- 
zations, all names of business firms and commercial or 
political bodies. Many a libel suit has resulted from 
confusing the name of a bankrupt house with its more 
prosperous neighbor of similar name as many as have 
resulted from reporting before the bar of justice the 
reputable citizen whose initials are only slightly different 
from those of the vagabond who was arrested. Many of 
the principal persons involved and many an honest citizen 
have been enraged by the appearance of his identical name 
and initials in connection with an activity which he does 
not countenance. Since newspaper reporters cannot be 
trusted to "get names straight," the duty of verifying 
them falls upon the copyreader and he must consider it 
a solemn duty, since a man's name is a sacred thing. 

4. Carelessness in Handling and Copying Figures. 
How often the public has been amazed by a variation of 
four deaths in two reports of an accident, and how often 
newspaper critics have scoffed at the fact that in three 
reports of a fire loss the figures may vary by $50,000. 


The newspapers answer that the mistake is due to diffi- 
culty in getting the facts. Often, however, it is due to 
a reporter's failure to grasp the significance of the figures 
and a copyreader's failure to check them. Working at 
his desk in an office, the copyreader often has difficulty 
in verifying the figures that a reporter has brought in, 
but he can be sure at least that there are no contradictions 
in the figures contained in the story and that the figures 
stand the test of his common sense. 
Four checks to catch errors in figures are : 

x. Check all figures in the story by adding, subtracting, 
multiplying, or applying other arithmetic. 

2. Ask yourself whether the figures seem reasonable. 

3. Require reporter to check the figures with his notes or 

to turn in his notes, to catch errors in copying. 

4. Ask reporter to write out numbers in his story, regard- 

less of office style; it is better for the copyreader 
to "ring" the numbers than to pass incorrect figures, 

5. Mistakes in Dates. Dates cause less trouble than 
other exact facts, but they are often wrong in spite of 
this. It is the duty of the copyreader to check every date 
that he reads and be sure that it is right arithmetically 
and otherwise. 

Safeguards against Inaccuracy. In the battle against 
inaccuracy, the copyreader may employ these aids : 

1. Knowledge of the local news field city and county 

its geography, industries, history, politics, people, 
interests ; a systematic survey of maps, directories, 
local histories, and other sources will be of value. 

2. Knowledge of the affairs of the nation history, poli- 

tics, finance, personalities, through reading of cur- 
rent books and magazine digests that tie together 


the loose ends that appear in the newspapers. A 
college education is essential but it must be kept up 
to date. 

3. A specialty one field in which he is an authority. 

4. A broad range developed by poking his head into 

every field of human knowledge science, art, 
philosophy to counteract present tendency toward 
specialization. This is an age of specialists in re* 
porting and editing, but the specialty must not get 
all the attention. 

5. Faithful news reading; some offices forbid the read- 

ing of competing papers, but they are fortunately 
rare, for every copyreader must know more of the 
news than comes over his desk. He must read all 
local papers and his "trade journal" must be the 
journal of opinion that ties up the scraps of news 
and interprets them. 

6. Systematic library reading, by selecting each week 

several big news topics and spending an evening in 
the public library reading up on them. 

7. Mastery of names through systematic grouping of 

them; the preparing of lists of local officials,* city 
aldermen, state and national officers, cabinet mem- 
bers, supreme court justices, ambassadors, business 
men, etc., will make the names stick. 

8. Familiarity with sources of information and, above 

all, with that great source the encyclopedia. 

The books of reference that the copyreader may use in 
checking up reporters' inaccuracies are numerous and 
varied. They include : the latest city directory; the latest 
local telephone directory ; telephone and city directories of 
all near-by towns and cities; Who's Who in America; 
Who's Who in England; Wer Isfs in Germany; Qui 


Etes-vous in France; the World, Tribune, Daily News, or 
other newspaper almanac; the Times Digest of the year; 
a standard encyclopedia; latest copy of state laws and 
statutes, etc. The copyreader should also make a habit 
of treasuring all lists of names and printed directories 
that come to his hand. Even then he will often find that 
he must fall back on the newspaper's "morgue" and 
general library. 

D. News Values 

Because the basis of newspaper writing is news value, 
the copyreader must be an arbiter of the form of the 
news stories that pass through his hands. In the large, 
rich office he will find that the reporters know news values 
and the news-story form as well as he and he will seldom 
have to revise a story except to change its emphasis. In 
smaller offices where the staff is largely composed of 
"cubs," he will find that he must bear the brunt of teach- 
ing the new reporters the form in which to write their 
stories. For, with the exception of the feature story 
and the occasional narrative story, news stories follow 
rather generally a conventional form a form which con- 
sists of a summary lead and a crowding of interest toward 
the beginning. If he has not learned this form through 
experience as a reporter, he must learn it through a study 
of newspaper stories. For the news-story form is as 
much an inherent part of American newspaper making as 
the bulletin headline. 

There is no space in this book to go into the definition 
or evaluation of 'news, or to discuss the various appeals 
and interests in the public mind that make news values. 
It should be noted, however, that it is difficult to write a 


definition of news that will be universally true for any 
period of time because: (i) news valuation is relative 
"one story against another"; (2) news values and 
topics are constantly changing; (3) standards of news 
vary in different sections of the country; (4) the defini- 
tion of news is set by the size of the community and of 
the newspaper; and (5) local community and newspaper 
policy change news values. A common fault in news 
evaluation is the "follow-leader" habit, the tendency to 
do "what the other fellow does," regardless of the public 
interest to consider a story "big news" because other 
newspapers play it up. A good axiom would be to watch 
"the opposition paper" less arid to study the public more. 
News Is what the public is interested in, regardless of the 
difficulty of getting this or that story or of the actions of 
rival newspapers. 

In editing stories into the proper "news story form," 
the copyreader may list the requirements as : 

1. A "summary lead," or introductory paragraph, pre- 

sents the gist of the news story in brief, bulletin 
form, with answers to the reader's questions, who? 
when? where? etc. 

2. The "news feature," or most interesting fact' or angle 

of the story, is "played up" in the lead, usually in 
the first line. 

3. An "inverted pyramid" in the rest of the story places 

the more interesting facts early and the less interest- 
ing at the end. 

4. Short, unified, "block" paragraphs are used, each mak- 

ing a particular point and usually beginning with a 
"high light" of interest. 

5. An impersonal point of view presents the facts with- 

out the writer's opinion. 


Without going into a detailed discussion of the news- 
story form, it is possible to point out some of the com- 
mon faults that appear in "cub" reporters' stories and 
certain tests of the structure. The copyreader must re- 
member, however, that they are all to be subordinated to 
the general idea of presenting the story's most interesting 
content at the very outset and summarizing the entire 
Btory in the lead, or first paragraph. The common faults 

I. Inadequate Lead. The lead fails to give the gist 
of the story and to summarize all the elements that follow. 
Perhaps it fails to answer all the reader's questions about 
this summary, viz., when, where, who, how, and why. 
The summary may not give both sides of the question or 
may mention only one phase of a story that contains many 
phases. For instance, the lead may give the impression 
that the story is a report of one man's speech although the 
story is really a report of a meeting including a number of 
speeches. It is quite evident that such a lead gives undue 
prominence to the one speaker and may lose readers who 
are not interested in this man or his words. The lead, 
in other words, should include or suggest every phase of 
the story the story in its entirety to give a rounded 
impression and to attract as many readers as possible. 
This summary may require one paragraph or half a 
column, but it must be complete before the running narra- 
tive begins. 

Seven tests of the adequacy of the lead are: 

X. Is it sufficiently complete and clear in itself to be cut 
off from the rest of the story and to be published 
alone among the "News Briefs"? If not, put in 
the details needed to make it dear. 


2. Does it answer the questions, who, when, where, why, 

and what, which arise in the reader's mind? 

3. Does it mention all phases ; is it an adequate "table of 

contents" of the story? 

4. Is it conclusive ; does it finish the action reported or 

merely introduce it? 

5. Does it give the source or authority for the news, 

fixing responsibility and making the story authentic; 
or is it just an anonymous and hearsay statement? 

6. Does it give the "keynote word" on which the news 

value hinges? 

7. Does it indicate clearly whether this is a "first day" 

or a "second day" follow story ? 

2. Failure to Begin with the Feature. The lead 
should always begin with the most interesting fact in 
the story the feature, as it is called. Never should it 
begin with general explanation, the time, the place, or any 
subordinate element, unless that element is more interest- 
ing than everything else in the story. The copyreader 
must learn the advertising value of the first printed line. 
The white space above the first line causes it to stand out 
with as much prominence as if the first six or seven words 
were heavier, blacker type. This important position 
should be devoted to six or seven words that are interest- 
ing enough to hold the eye that is drawn to them by their 
prominent position and to carry the reader 'down into the 
story. Partly because they do not realize the importance 
of the beginning of the news story and partly because 
it is psychologically difficult to begin a narrative with 
the climax, young reporters are inclined to waste the be- 
ginning in useless words. Or, understanding the signi- 
ficance of the beginning, they may strain too hard and 
make the beginning unnatural. Their inclination may be 


to go outside the story for a beginning to drag in a 
witticism or a parallelism or an unwarranted superlative. 
Such a beginning is just as much a waste of space as the 
other, for it is the facts of the story that the reader wants 
and not a feeble attempt at cleverness. If a story is worth 
printing at all, there is some fact in it that deserves the 
first line, and it is better to seek out this significant part 
of the story than to ramble around the world in search of 
a clever saying that will lead up to the story. In general, 
the ideal lead is simply a summary of the story beginning 
with the most significant element in that summary. 

In editing leads, the copyreader should refuse to pass 
any story which buries any fact more interesting than 
the facts in the lead or any story which has phases not 
summarized in the lead. If all the facts are there, the 
rest of the problem is a mere matter of grammar. Prac- 
tice will enable him to see the most effective way to put 
these facts together grammatically, by rearrangement or 
breaking up of sentences. 

Four tests of the adequacy of the feature are: 

1. If the first six words are the "show window" of the 

story, does it contain something to attract hurrying 
readers ? 

2. Is any other fact, item, or angle that is buried in the 

body of the story more likely to catch the reader's 
interest ? 

3. Is the content of the first line an essential part of the 

story or something dragged in from outside ? 

4. Can the top deck of the headline be built out of the 

first line? 

In some offices, "That" is taboo as the first word of a 
lead. In others, direct quotation beginning is under the 


ban. Neither of these beginnings is objectionable, of 
course, unless it is overused. Stereotyped lead forms 
should be avoided ; the copyreader should try to give each 
lead an individual touch. Above all, a lead should not be 
allowed to begin with a statement of time, unless that is 
the feature of the story. It is seldom that superlatives in 
leads are warranted ; copyreaders should question them, as 
well as all statements that sound exaggerated. 

3. Inadequate Summary of Long Story. This fault 
is a 'part of the preceding fault. Many reporters stub- 
bornly refuse to recognize that the lead is sometimes more 
than the first paragraph. Their stories begin with an 
interesting feature and contain a summary of facts related 
to that feature but fail to suggest the rest of the story. 
The fault appears most often in a long story the report 
of a series of speeches, for instance. The writer neglects 
to list the speakers in the lead and hence in make-up some 
of the speakers, who are mentioned only at the end of 
the story, are cut out of the report entirely. The copy- 
reader must insert a summary paragraph ahead of the 
running narrative, to gather up the loose ends that the lead 
has neglected. 

4. Failure to Follow Up the Feature. This occurs 
most often in stories that begin with some striking cir- 
cumstance. The reporter uses this fact, the most interest- 
ing in the story, for his beginning, and then forgets to 
mention it again. The reader feels that he has been 
cheated out of something, since the feature played up in 
the first line is more or less an advertisement of what he 
is to find in the story. Often this feature, which is neg- 
lected in the narrative, is the only thing in the story that 
has news value, that is worth printing. For instance, a 


reporter writes a 3OO-word story on a fire whose only 
interest is a strikingly unusual cause say, a cat and a 
candle. To attract attention to the story, the reporter 
begins with the cause and then forgets to explain how the 
cat and the candle accomplished their costly work. The 
reader, whose only idea in reading the story is to find out 
what the cat and the candle did, is decidedly disappointed. 
The story has advertised something that it doesn't have in 
stock. The writer should have devoted the major part of 
the story to the feature, or at least one paragraph. 

5. Failure to Prepare for "Cutting" in Make-up. 
The exigencies of make-up in many offices require that 
every story be written in such a way as to allow for cut- 
ting after it leaves the copy desk. Some offices require 
this because it makes possible the gradual cutting down 
of stories through successive editions, without rewriting 
or resetting. But many young reporters do not grasp the 
idea at once. Usually the fault lies in an inadequate 
summary in the lead and failure to crowd interesting facts 
toward the beginning of the story. The copyreader must 
remedy it by adding to the lead and by rearranging the 
rest of the story. 

Three tests of "inverted pyramid" outline are: 

1. Can you cut off the last paragraph or cut anywhere? 

2. Is a climax developed toward the end of the story? 

3. Is some statement of importance "tacked on" the end 

something forgotten earlier in the story? 

6. Lack of Paragraph Unity. Each paragraph, ex- 
cept the first, should be a separate unit by itself that may 
be omitted without seriously injuring the story or break- 
ing up the coherence. Each paragraph must be perfect 


in unity that is, it must deal with one phase of the story 
and be absolutely complete in itself. Then an alteration 
of the story to match later news is possible without re- 
setting. But many reporters, failing to outline their 
stories carefully, build them up of straggling, mixed-up 
paragraphs. The copyreader must reparagraph. 

Test paragraph unity thus : If the paragraphs are as 
unified as they should be "separate blocks" it is 
possible to shift them about, to cut and paste them in 
a new order without rewriting. 

7. Comment and Opinion.- There are few news- 
papers which permit their reporters to pass judgment on 
the facts discussed. The editors prefer to gather all the 
judgment and comment into the editorial columns. But 
the young reporter has an almost irresistible impulse to 
give his readers an inkling of his opinion on the facts. 
He fills his stories full of inconspicuous comments that 
color the story, and the copyreader must edit them out. 
Sometimes the comments are so subtle that it is difficult 
to find them only the general tone is noticeable. They 
usually creep in through qualifying and comparative ad- 
jectives and adverbs; sometimes a verb is responsible; 
again the use or omission of a title will give the tone. 
Superlative expressions are probably the most common 
offenders, for reporters seldom realize that a superlative 
is in itself a comment. The copyreader must watch 
closely for "feeling" in the stories he edits and must 
eliminate the particular words that give the feding. 

Four tests of comment and opinion are : 

I. Can the reader discover whether the writer approves 
or disapproves of any person, fact, or action in the 


2. Is any "color" introduced through adjectives, adverbs, 

too vivid verbs, or too glowing nouns ? 

3. Does reporter tell what he thinks, or what he knows? 

4. Is the story written for newspaper men or for out- 

siders is its point of view to beat the rival paper 
or reporter, or to inform the public ? 

E. Style and Diction 

Many of the other faults that the copyreader must look 
for in copy may be grouped under this general head. 
They are not so conspicuous as the errors listed above 
but they are nevertheless flaws and must be corrected. 
Some of them are: 

i. Use of Long Sentences and Complicated Grammar. 
Since an essential requirement of the modern news- 
paper is that it be easy to read, its diction must be clear 
and swift. The rapid reader of to-day in glancing through 
the news will not take time to decipher involved sentences, 
to dig through complicated grammar, or to wade into a 
sentence so complicated that its writer must go back and 
pick up his subject again on the second breath. The 
grammar must be clear and straightforward; there must 
be no turning back or reversal of idea; even a change 
from active to passive voice is often confusing. The 
only style that will satisfy this is one made of compara- 
tively short, simple sentences. The length is not so im- 
portant as the simplicity; a sixty-word sentence is often 
easier to grasp than a four-word sentence. But the aver- 
age young reporter, trained as he has been in the flowery, 
oratorical style taught in the usual school composition 
class, delights in tangling his ideas into an impenetrable 
mass of complicated grammar. Until he teams that, 
however valuable the oratorical style may be in other 


writing, it has no place in the newspaper, the copyreader 
must untangle his grammar and make it readable. Usu- 
ally the easiest way to simplify it is to break the sentences 
into several shorter, more unified sentences. 

2. Use of Unemphatic Sentence Beginnings. Since 
the emphatic sentence beginning which rapid reading 
demands is directly contradictory to the sentence emphasis 
which the young reporter is often taught in school com- 
position, the copyreader finds that a large part of his 
editing consists in breaking down climactic periods and 
overturning oratorical efforts. Before he has been "on 
the desk" long he will find himself unconsciously throw- 
ing explanatory material back into the sentence and drag- 
ging emphatic phrases to the beginning. He may think 
that he is doing it to put "punch" into the story, but 
really he is making it easy to read. The reporter, before 
he took a place on the staff, was taught to write the kind 
of style that is most effective when read aloud, and he 
must learn that the same thing is not effective when read 
silently and rapidly. While he is learning that in journal- 
istic writing he must put his best foot forward in each 
sentence, as well as in paragraph and story, his copyreader 
will find the earmarks of the oratorical style throughout 
his work. The most evident of them are the many sen- 
tences beginning with "He said " and "They are of the 
opinion that " ; the sentences that are halted by "how- 
ever" and "nevertheless" on the front doorstep. One 
sweep of the pencil carries these obstructions back into 
the sentence out of the way and when the trained copy- 
reader has finished, the sentence begins with its most 
interesting content in the first few words. Periodic 
sentences, generally speaking, are out of place in news- 


paper writing. Under no circumstances should a news* 
paper sentence begin with explanatory matter. 

3. Failure to Use Short, Compact Paragraphs. 
Coming to the office with a thorough training in the writ- 
ing of 2OO-word literary themes, the young reporter for- 
gets that he is now writing for a column only two inches 
wide for lines of only six or seven words. He forgets 
that the narrowness of the columns makes his paragraphs 
look twice as long and that there is nothing so uninviting 
to a newspaper reader as a long paragraph. The copy- 
reader must therefore become very adept in scattering 
paragraph marks through the reporter's copy. An easy 
guide that the copyreader may follow is that one type- 
written line makes almost exactly two lines of type; since 
twelve; lines is a heavy paragraph in a newspaper, six lines 
of typewritten copy should be almost the limit of length. 
Gradually he will learn how to estimate longhand copy to 
produce printed paragraphs of the proper length. In the 
same connection, he will notice the reporter's tendency 
toward burying his quotation marks in the midst of his 
paragraphs and combining summary and indirect quota- 
tion in the same paragraph. Realizing the value of a 
quotation mark to catch the reader's eye, the copyreader 
will put paragraph signs in front of most of the quotation 
marks he finds thus buried. 

4. Use of Unemphatic Paragraph Beginnings. Just 
as the first line of the story is emphasized by the white 
space above it, the first line of every paragraph is set off 
by the white space of the indention and the short line 
above it. Each paragraph beginning is therefore a spot 
which the readers eye is likely to strike, and the copy- 
reader must see to it that the first line says something of 


interest In other words, the emphasis of each paragraph, 
just as in the entire story, must be .thrown toward the 
beginning so that the content may be grasped quickly by 
the reader. 

5. Wordiness. Conciseness is one of the most im- 
portant characteristics of newspaper writing, because 
every day the paper gathers more news than it has space 
to print. Conciseness, almost to the point of baldness, is 
demanded of its writers. No word should appear in a 
story unless it has a definite reason for existence. But 
conciseness is a very hard thing to learn because it is built 
of close, compact thinking. The copyreader must wage 
continual war on wordiness. He must question the value 
of every word, phrase, and clause ; he must constantly try 
to substitute one word for several words; he must con- 
tinually tighten up the loose sentences his reporters write. 
Sometimes the wordiness results from needless repetition ; 
again it can be blamed on a small vocabulary. One of its 
chief evidences is in the splitting of an idea into two sen- 
tences half the space can be saved, without sacrificing 
content, by condensing the two into one. This condensing 
process is called "boiling." It consists in pruning the 
language down to the thought. It is not necessary to 
eliminate any thoughts or facts in condensing; the mode 
of expression may simply be boiled down, so that two 
ideas may be expressed in the space of one. The process 
is justifiable in the newspaper office because to the news- 
paper writer English is a means rather than an end he 
cares more for the thought than for its expression. And 
,the meaty, close-packed style that results from the copy- 
' reader's boiling is characteristically journalistic. It has 
a greater specific gravity. 


6. Use of General, Rather than Concrete, Definite 
Nouns. This is a subject that is worth a volume in itself 
because it involves the life of newspaper writing. The 
question of vocabulary would seem to be rather a con- 
cern of the reporter than of the copyreader, but the copy- 
reader must make up for the reporter's shortcomings. He 
must accept the excellencies which the reporter possesses 
and add to them his own. He must cooperate with the 
reporter in keeping newspaper writing from becoming a 
dead, dry rehearsal of facts, and certain things he may 
well bear in mind as he scans for actual mistakes. Bright- 
ness and interest in writing depend upon exact, definite 
words. Whenever he sees a broad, general, meaningless 
word he must cast about for a concrete expression of it. 
If the reporter says, "many persons rushed to his aid," 
the copyreader can make the sentence more interesting by 
substituting the exact number. He will also make the 
sentence more credible, for we are more Ukely to believe 
definite statements than hazy ones. The more he sets 
forth the exact details of the story, the more likely we 
will be to see the picture in its entirety and to be inter- 
ested in it. 

The search for the vivid picture word has, however, 
in recent years led many newspaper writers into word 
coinage. Newspapers have been full of such expressions as 
"hammer slayer/' "love bandit," "hatchet killer," "bobbed 
hair bandit," "poison pen," "death candy," "moron," 
"death car," "half-wit slayer," "death area," "water 
steal," "booze sleuths," and countless others. This color- 
ful vocabulary has largely resulted from the borrowing 
of headline words for use in the story itself, and, while 
limited space in the headline may justify such word coin* 


age, it is doubtful whether any equally good excuse can 
be found for their use elsewhere. To some extent they 
have been used to tie together "first" and "second-day" 
stories so that references will be quickly grasped to make 
a "serial story" of a continuing event. Follow stories on 
court trials have thus been hitched together briefly. But, 
in general, these words tend to sensationalize every triv- 
ial event, to fill the newspaper with "stock" pictures in- 
stead of real pictures of the news, and to starve out good 
English. In the long run they will do great damage to 
newspaper writing and to the vocabulary of newspaper 
men. There is no occasion to stamp them out as a class, 
but each should be questioned. 

7. Failure to Use Bright, Vivid Verbs. Interest de- 
mands more vivid expression. How many verbs there 
are in English to express a man's manner of walking, 
and yet how many reporters are satisfied with "he crossed 
the street"! How many ways there are of recording 
vocal expression, and yet how much "he said" is over- 
worked ! For almost every action in the world, English 
has a verb and the more of them a story contains the 
more interesting it will be. The copyreader must not be 
satisfied with the old stand-bys ; he must usher out some 
of the little used nouns and verbs. He will then find less 
occasion for the use of slang. 

One of the greatest faults of young reporters is over- 
use of the stiff many-syllabled words of Greek or Latin 
origin partly because they sound "big" and learned. If 
the copyreader will substitute shorter, more vivid Anglo- 
Saxon words, he will improve the story. Many hand- 
books for newspaper men contain lists of overused Latin 
derivatives and their Anglo-Saxon synonyms (see Bibli- 


ography, Appendix III), Other good sources are the dic- 
tionary and the King James Bible which is almost 97 per 
cent Anglo-Saxon. 

The question of active and passive voice is important. 
Action expressed entirely in passive verbs gives the feel- 
ing of walking^backward the receiver is continually pre- 
ceding the giver ; the result is ahead of action. To right 
about face and proceed face forward gives the style swift- 
ness, directness, and interest. A careful study of re- 
porter's copy will disclose the fact that more than half his 
verbs are passive, and hence the copyreader, to eliminate 
this fault, must question the presence of every passive 
verb he sees. 

Trite expression should be avoided. Not all the old 
stand-bys of newspaper writing are trite. Some of them 
are simply good words worn threadbare. But many are 
simply would-be clever expressions worn to the bone. No 
good English word in its proper usage is trite or tiresome ; 
you say "noon" every day of your life without tiring of 
it or realizing its presence. The trite word is the word 
that is taken out of its proper place and given a new mean- 
ing. It tickles the reader the first time it is used, but 
the third time it is stale. The first reporter who said, 
"They staged a good fight," had invented a clever expres- 
sion, but we are tired of it now because "staged" is out 
of its proper meaning and no longer clever. The same 
applies to many of the tiresome newspaper expressions 
that the reporter dashes into his copy. He uses them be- 
cause he does not take time to think and the copyreader 
can brighten his story by crossing out the trite words and 
substituting good English words. 

Trite words are chiefly to blame for the disparaging 


term, "journalese." The straining for synonyms, the 
habitual use of nicknames for states, teams, cities, and 
persons, the seeming abhorrence of calling things by their 
right names, the sickly counterfeiting of humor through 
clumsy allusion, the painful effort to ornament statements 
that should be simple and straightforward that is "jour- 
nalese." It may be seen at its worst in the sport writing 
of smaller newspapers. It has been dubbed "rubber 
stamp" writing because it consists Entirely of other per- 
sons' ideas. If newspaper writing is to be crisp, inter- 
esting, original, the stock words and phrases must go. 

Word Diet. An effective remedy is a "word diet" 
a systematic barring, one after another, of the commonest 
trite words from all copy in the office. To bar "sleuth" 
for one week would benefit humanity. Another remedy 
is a definite effort to enlarge vocabulary through study of 
the dictionary and of good literature. To add ten new 
words a week would benefit any writer's or editor's style; 

8. Lack of Dignity of Expression. The accusation 
that the newspaper is having a bad influence upon Ameri- 
can speech is partly due to the lack of dignity in the 
columns of many papers. Through haste and careless- 
ness, rather than through viciousness, many newspaper 
workers forget the great educational influence that their 
words spread broadcast and shirk their duty as educators 
of a large share of the population. If they but remember 
that one coarse expression which they pass to the com- 
posing room may be picked up and gleefully repeated by 
thousands of readers, young and old, they will hesitate 
before they take the responsibility of lowering American 
life by so much as this one coarse expression. The bustle 
and rush of their work makes them unmindful of its in- 


fluence. Sometimes they feel that they must "get down" 
to the level of their readers. But some of the most suc- 
cessful American newspapers are successful because they 
have stood steadfast in their high place and brought their 
readers up to their own level. The educational influence 
of the newspaper makes it imperative that a newspaper, 
while gauging the level of its readers, should strike 
slightly above their heads in its expression and so educate 
them up slowly to a higher plane. Every copyreader, 
therefore, should think twice before he allows to pass 
any of the undignified expressions that his reporters pick 
up on the street. For in every case he will find words just 
as bright and vivid in the dictionary. This applies espe- 
cially to the use of slang and other perversions of the 
mother tongue. It also applies to the numerous nick- 
names and undignified references that reporters delight in 
sprinkling through their copy. To refer to a man by 
other than his proper name is to be rude and familiar, 
and the action reflects not upon the man but upon the 

There is no good reason why American youth should 
be brought up on underworld slang, police court vulgari- 
ties, the jargon of sport training quarters, the dialects of 
the slums. A sprinkling of such terms may be used by a 
skillful writer to lend a bit of life to his story. But in 
most cases, their use evidences nothing more than the zeal 
of a very young and very green reporter to "show off" 
his amazing knowledge of life. To him reporting is still 
thrilling and exciting; it has not yet become a serious busi- 
ness. Copyreaders must curb his tiresome smartness. 

Lack of respect for law, government, and constituted 
officials is a growing problem in this country. In some 


cases, it is blamed upon the failure of newer elements in 
American society to grasp the true American attitude to- 
ward constituted authority, duly elected after partisan 
strife. But no small part of the blame may be laid at the 
door of the newspapers which, in recent years, have shown 
increasing carelessness in the use of governmental 
names and titles, a subtle disrespect or ridicule of law 
and its enforcement, a carrying over of political partisan- 
ship into every mention of government authorities. The 
effect of this upon the immigrant and the ignorant is 
obvious if Americans do not speak of law and officials 
with respect, evidently they have no respect. Copy- 
readers can do a good work by enforcing the use of full 
name of officials, proper titles, "Mr." in the customary 
usage, and the elimination of party antagonism in stories 
of government a discrimination between partisan poli- 
tics and constituted authority. 

Common courtesy must not 'be overlooked. Some 
newspapers have the rule, "This newspaper expects a re- 
porter to be a gentleman." Why then should not the 
reporter write courteous and gentlemanly references to 
persons in the news ? Yet the average newspaper is full 
of petty discourtesy, expressions that no decent reporter 
would use to a man's face. The cause is carelessness of 
reporters and copyreaders, and a misguided effort to save 
space. "Mr." has its proper place in American life and 
should be used accordingly. 

A new responsibility to the English language has come 
with swelling circulations. A few years ago, when a 
newspaper was read by perhaps 2,000 educated men, 
there was no such responsibility. Now that the newspaper 
is almost the only reading matter of the masses, the 


newspaper man becomes the teacher and the arbiter of 
language. In some cases, he is writing an English primer 
from which the immigrant learns our language. 

F. Libelous Statements 

The copyreader is the watchdog who must keep libelous 
statements out of the news columns ; at any rate, he usu- 
ally receives the blame when his newspaper suffers libel 
action because of statements he allowed to pass. The 
position is an uncomfortable one, for the exact nature of 
libel is an indefinite thing, depending as much upon cir- 
cumstances and the" verdict of the jury as upon law, and 
no newspaper can fulfill its office as a dispenser of news 
without now and then laying itself open to libel action. 
It is practically impossible to print all the news, at the 
time when it should be printed, without running into 
danger of hurting some one's good name to a damage- 
able extent ; but for one libelous statement that results in 
legal action and recovery, ten as serious go by unnoticed. 
Hence the desk man learns to judge individual cases by 
instinct, balancing the news value of stories against their 
libel content and deciding each case on its own merits. 

A libelous statement is an untruth that hurts some- 
one's private, professional, or business reputation. The 
old basis, "the greater the truth, the greater the libel," 
no longer holds good; now only an untrue statement is 
libelous. But all untrue statements are not libelous ; they 
must hurt some one to be libelous. Just what constitutes 
damage to one's character is the question concerned. In 
general, any statement .that holds an individual up to 
public contempt, ridicule, scorn, or shame, if untrue, is 
libelous to accuse him of a loathsome disease or to sug- 


gest lack of morality or integrity in his business or private 
life. In the case of a professional man, anything that 
suggests lack of skill or knowledge or charges incompe- 
tency is libelous, but the statement must "touch him" in 
his professional capacity. The same applies to business 
concerns and enterprises. Public officials, while open to 
criticism in their public capacity, cannot be attacked as 
private citizens or accused of moral or mental unfitness 
for office. Criticism must be concerned with their official 
acts. But any of these accusations or implications is 
harmless of libel if the newspaper can prove it true. When 
it is untrue, and the victim wishes to retaliate, he can do 
so by bringing suit and recovering such damages as the 
jury thinks are equivalent to the injury he has suffered. 
The case is not decided on the basis of the newspaper's 
intent or innocence of malice, but on the basis of the in- 
jury suffered by the victim. This is true except when the 
statements may be such as to lead to a "breach of the 
peace" and the evident motive results in criminal proceed- 
ings against the publisher. 

Besides truth, however, the newspaper has another 'de- 
fense in its injurious statements about individuals 
"privilege." Certain statements, even though untrue, are 
protected from libel action because they are privileged 
because the information came from a privileged source. 
This privilege covers all information obtained from the 
proceedings of judicial, legislative, and other public or 
semi-public bodies whose doings are of public interest. If 
the newspaper publishes damaging facts derived from 
such proceedings and publishes them fairly and accurately, 
it is protected from libel action even though the facts are 
untrue. But there are dangers even in this. In the 


fraud. They have been collecting money on a "fake" song pub- 
lishing scheme. 

It is said that Harper fled Chicago a year ago after he had 
forged a number of checks. Bailey is thought to be a notorious 
swindler wanted in the South. 

What Newspapers Cannot Print. In connection with 
libel, it is well to note that certain things cannot be 
printed in any case. These are forbidden by federal law : 

1. Treasonable and seditious matter as defined in the 

United States Penal Code. 

2. Fraudulent weather forecasts or warnings credited 

to governmental sources. 

3. Reproductions of certificates of citizenship. 

4. Reproductions of any kind of paper money. 

5. Obscene, lewd, lascivious text, pictures, or advertise- 


6. Pictures, text, or advertising concerning lotteries, gift 

enterprises, or offering of prizes dependent upon 
lot or chance, including references to raffles or card 
parties which involve admission charges or prizes. 

7. Matter that aids or abets mail frauds. 

8. Reproductions of postage stamps, post cards, stamped 

envelopes, money orders, etc. 

Beyond these federal restrictions and the state libel 
laws, the American press is entirely free of censorship or 
legal prohibitions. Public opinion constitutes its one 
great curb. 

i. The Ability to See Errors 

The knack of seeing errors is one of the first things 
that a young copyreader must cultivate. And it is a 



difficult thing to acquire. The ordinary reader does not 
see half the mistakes in the things he reads. Even a 
second reading will not bring all the errors to his atten- 
tion. It is because he has a tendency to seize the thought 
without noticing the means of expression; he reads by 
sentences and clauses rather than by words, grasping a 
line at a time and skimming through the elements that 
make up the expression. The copyreader must, however, 
concentrate on the means of expression and take into his 
mind, not only the thought, but the individual words. 
This ability to see errors comes only with practice and 
can be developed to the point of being an unconscious 
habit. The beginner can cultivate it best by going back 
to the elemental actions that constitute the process. He 
must first break himself of the habit of scanning what he 
reads; he must train himself to read word by word, de- 
veloping the faculty of seeing and noting every letter and 
every punctuation point. At first, it may be necessary 
for him to read line by line with a card, as the proof- 
reader does, to force his mind to concentrate on the 
details. Not only while he is actually reading copy should 
he watch for errors, but he should force himself to watch 
the details in everything he reads, udterocess be- 
comes a habit. Not until he 

that a misspelled word and a Ktt out 

like a blot, is he a good 

A good copyreader ta 
has edited as presentable as 
to prepare it for the printer, 
he should increase rather than 


legibility and neatness, he uses a large, soft pencil whose 
mark may be readily seen in the dim light over the lino- 
type's copyholder. When he puts in a run-in line to 
guide the printer's eye, he makes it definite and straight. 
When he crosses out words, he eradicates them thoroughly 
and draws a bridge around the gap to emphasize the fact 
that the word is gone. Whenever there is any doubt 
about consecutive positions, he connects the doubtful 
words with run-in lines. He is especially careful to do 
this when his cutting has left a word stranded at the be- 
ginning or end of a line. With his firm, black lines he 
blazes a trail through the corrections, for he knows that 
the printer is trained to follow the connecting lines. He 
also uses as few marks as possible and takes pains to write 
legibly whenever he inserts words. Inserted material he 
writes above the line in fact, all marks are placed above 
the line, so that the compositor will see them in time, and 
no additions are written vertically in the margin because 
.this complicates the task of cutting copy into takes. Where 
the revision requires so many corrections that they become 
confused, he rewrites the sentence or paragraph on a 
separate sheet of paper and pastes it into place. He pre- 
pares each piece of copy as if it were to be handled by the 
most stupid printer on earth and as if it were to be a 
record of his neatness in editing. 

Young copyreaders often feel that it is useless to cor- 
rect every obviously misspelled word, to straighten out 
every transposition of letters, to check every capital and 
.figure, to insert every necessary punctuation mark, to put 
in each paragraph mark. They leave these details to the 
compositors. Experienced copyreaders do not ; they leave 
nothing undone in their work for they realize .that they 


are "the official correctors/' Thoroughness is the whole 
job ; mere "paragraph marking" is not copyreading. It is 
often said that every newspaper is hunting for at least 
one good desk man one copyreader who can do the job 
right. There are plenty of "copy butchers" and "para- 
graph markers" but good copyreaders are always scarce. 

3. Swiftness 

There is no place in the busy newspaper office for the 
man who must putter and ponder. But at the same time 
the good copyreader realizes that haste makes waste on 
the copy desk as elsewhere. Instead of plunging into the 
copy and deluging it with corrections, he stops long 
enough to decide the easiest and quickest way to make the 
desired change. The fewer the marks, the better the 
editing. When he sees a fault, he analyzes it clearly and 
chooses the simplest remedy before he touches his pencil 
to the paper. He is sure then that his correction has 
accomplished its work and has not added confusion. In 
the end, he gets through the work faster .than the man 
who blunders blindly ahead, altering the beginning of a 
sentence before he has read the end, and "butchering" 
the first line of a paragraph before he has found out how 
essential it is to the rest, or crossing out an adverb before 
he notices .that the next sentence requires its presence. 
Every correction that the copyreader makes must have a 
reason, and the blunderer is never as efficient as the man 
who works rapidly but keeps his head. 

4. Mere Cutting 

Some copyreaders seem to have a feeling that their 
work is not complete unless they have crossed out so 


many sentences and slashed off so many paragraphs. Such 
copyreaders are rightly dubbed "copy butchers" by their 
reporters. Indiscriminate copy cutting is bad because it 
deprives the story of its coherence and continuity. If 
condensation is necessary, it should be accomplished by 
boiling by eliminating useless words without throwing 
out facts and ideas. A story that is ruthlessly cut is 
usually worse than it was before, because it has lost many 
of the facts that make it worth while, and what remains 
is just as wordy and scatterbrained as before. 

There is at present much hue and cry about "news sup- 
pression." A study of individual stories, however, will in- 
dicate that, for one case of "policy suppression," resulting 
from office mandate, there are dozens of cases resulting 
merely from careless slashing. Stories must be trimmed 
down to meet space requirements, but the good copy- 
reader knows that this can be done without eliminating 
essential facts or ideas the trimmed story may be just 
as complete and truthful as before. In some offices the 
reporters come to learn that a careless desk man always 
slashes the last paragraph or two of every story, what- 
ever its content, and clever writers put on a "slash para- 
graph" to satisfy the copyreader's habit. The ridiculous- 
ness of such trimming is obvious. 

5. Boiling 

Intelligent boiling must be practiced. It is concerned 
with words and phrases rather than with sentences and 
paragraphs. Condensing, skillfully done, leaves the story 
better because it has stripped much of the useless fat from 
the meat of the thought. It consists in substituting one 
word for several, in putting related sentences together, in 
compressing the original thought into smaller space with- 


out allowing any of the thought to escape. Nine out of 
ten of the stories that come to the copyreader's hands will 
be improved by careful condensation. Good writers prac- 
tice it on their own work to counteract their tendency 
toward wordiness. They find it a better way to cut length 
than to slash out entire paragraphs of ideas and facts. 

Effective trimming and boiling, through the elimination 
of useless verbiage, is illustrated by the following. The 
words in italics may be eliminated with slight changes in 

Prospects for a busy and successful year along minor sports 
lines at the university during this season of 1924. are looming 
larger and larger every day and claiming an increasingly greater 
amount of attention as the spring fever season begins to crowd 
aside cold weather sports. 

The results so far in all the different phases of sport at the 
university have been such as to equal the expectations of the 
most optimistic supporters. The splendid victory of the track 
team on Saturday night, over the Purdueites, gives promising 
indications of future conference victories this spring. Captain 
Bob Jones' performance in the two-mile, a race in which he 
hung up a new Wisconsin indoor track record for 10 minutes, 
2/5 seconds, certainly shows that when distance events are on 
the bill of fare one Robert Jones Esq. has a mighty big appetite. 

A fitting team mate for Captain Jones is Dow Smith, the 
brilliant little distance man, who won the mile so handily from 
Purdue's aspirants in time which compares favorably with other 
conferences indoor records. Philip Brown, the much heralded 
interscholastic star, is another man to be reckoned with in coming 
track contests. He was the greatest individual point winner 
Saturday night. In the middle distance event another star was 
also uncovered in the person of Ray Williams who ran the 

quarter like a veteran. 

* * * * * 


With a loud, deafening roar that violently aroused hundreds 
from their beds of slwriber, the monster gas holder occupying 
the southwest corner of South Blount and Main streets, at the 
gasplant of the Madison Gas and Electric company, collapsed 
very suddenly at 6 130 this morning. 

The cause of the collapse was at first clothed in deep mystery, 
before the officials of the company had time to investigate. How- 
ever, it was definitely ascertained during the morning when Mr. 
John W. Jackson, the secretary of the company, being inter- 
viewed by the Daily News, stated that the immense quantities 
of snow on the roof of the holder were primarily responsible. 

6. Expanding 

To lengthen stories is just as necessary in copyreading 
as condensing them and should be done as intelligently. 
Some writers expand stories by reiterating and repeating 
ideas already covered. This kind of expansion has no 
place in the newspaper office. No story should fill more 
space than is required to present its facts clearly and 
concisely. There is only one way to expand intelligently 
and that is to add additional facts. The copyreader, work- 
ing at his desk far away from the source of a story, is 
often at a loss for additional facts. He will find, however, 
that most stories suggest far more facts than they elabo- 
rate sufficiently to insure clearness. He may expand 
stories by the simple process of writing in the facts that 
are suggested. But he must expand systematically so as 
not to destroy the story's balance. The easiest way to de- 
cide what phases are in need of elaboration is, he will find, 
to look at the story from the point of view of the reader 
and to determine what parts of the story are the most 
interesting or most in accord with the interest built up by 
the lead. Usually he will find that the facts in the lead 


are the best ones to elaborate. But this elaboration does 
not mean the invention of imaginary facts to fit the case ; 
it means the writing in of real facts that the reporter has 
suggested but has failed to make clear. 

Sometimes this is a matter of "editing the story for 
the reader," rather than for newspaper men. To a re- 
porter who has been trailing the story all day, it is "old 
stuff" ; to the reader every angle of it is new. The copy- 
reader who has seen a full account of the news in a morn- 
ing paper from another city may forget that most of his 
local readers have not seen it, and that there is every rea- 
son to print every detail of it in his afternoon newspaper. 

Often the "fattening out" of a story, to make it com- 
plete, adequate, and interesting, requires recourse to the 
morgue, to "Who's Who," or to what the copyreader 
knows. This is most often true in foreign or other tele- 
graph dispatches ; it is also true in official news, such as 
announcements of appointments. Legitimate copyreading 
supplies missing initials, identifications, and other needed 
details. The following story, and possible insertions (in 
italics), will illustrate: 


The extension of Capitol avenue, as recommended in the new 
zoning ordinance, will be favorably reported on Friday night 
by the special realty committee appointed by the mayor to inves- 
tigate the project. To open the street, the city must spend 
$125,000, according to* John Smith, chairman, but will make a 
profit of at least $25,000 on excess land. Adjoining lots should 
be classified "light industrial/' according to Smith. 


The extension of Capitol avenue, from Fifth street to Second 
street, as recommended in the major street pirn adopted last 


October as a part of the new zoning ordinance, will be favorably 
reported on Friday night by the special appraisal committee. 

The committee of ten real estate men, which was appointed 
by Mayor H. R. MUler last February, completed its survey last 
week. John H. Smith, former alderman and chairman of the 
committee, declared today that the committee Witt urge imme- 
diate action. 

To open the street, the city must spend $125,000 to purchase 
a strip joo feet wide adjoining the new avenue. Through in- 
creased values and sale of excess land on each side, the city will 
make a profit of at least $25,000, Mr. Smith said. 

Adjoining lots should be changed from the present "C" resi- 
dential to light industrial, to permit the building of retail stores 
on the avenue, according to Mr. Smith. 


Governor John H. Groves today announced the appointment 
of Harry Hall, Boonton, as regent of the state university from 
the sixth district. (Expand item by looking up Mr. Hall in a 
book of reference, telling who he is, telling whom he succeeds, 
giving the length of his term, recalling other recent appoint- 
ments of regents, and noting when other terms expire, etc.) 

7. Estimating Space 

In the trimming and expanding of stories, the space 
to be occupied may be estimated on the following basis : 
One full line of standard pica typewritten copy fills two 
lines of 8-point type in the ordinary newspaper column. 
Thus eight lines of copy fill 16 print lines. 

In some offices, stories are measured in "sticks." A 
stick is 2 inches of type or one-tenth of a column. For 
8-point type, about eight lines of copy make a stick. For 
7-point type, between nine and ten lines of copy fill a 


Other offices measure stories by the column-inch. Under 
such orders, the copyreader estimates : four lines of copy 
make an inch of 8-point type ; nearly five lines fill an inch 
of 7-point ; six lines fill an inch of 6-point ; three lines fill 
an inch of lo-point; and two lines fill an inch of 12-point. 

In a few offices, reporters are required to set their type- 
writer margins to write line-f or-line with printed space ; 
such a practice alters the estimates. 


The beginner may develop his proficiency at copyread- 
ing by undertaking the task as systematically as the pianist 
learns the technic of his art. There are finger exercises 
in copyreading as well as in instrumentation, (i) The 
first is to watch for errors, grammatical, typographical, 
and logical, in everything he reads to edit mentally every- 
thing that conies to his hands. In this way he will 
sharpen his copyreading eyesight. (2) Another is to 
begin reading copy word for word, perhaps moving the 
lips to assist the mind in concentrating. If necessary, he 
may force concentration by following the copy line by 
line with a card. (3) As there are so many things to 
look for in copyreading (listed A, B, C, D, E, and F under 
III above), it is often good practice to begin the study by 
looking for one kind of error at a time. The first reading 
may be devoted to catching errors of expression; the 
second, typographical style ; the third, accuracy, and so on. 
This method will insure thorough work until the copy- 
reader has learned to watch for all of them at once. (4) 
Since it is impossible to do much with the news value of 
a story until one has grasped its entire content and a 


complete reading is necessary to learn the content, a 
young copyreader can often improve his work by con- 
sciously breaking the task into two readings. During the 
first, while he is grasping the story's content, he will 
correct all the small errors, e.g., A, B, and C. He is 
then ready to go over it again to change the arrangement, 
e.g., D, E, and F. Careful preliminary practice, like the 
pianist's finger exercises, will in time enable him to gather 
in the story at a glance and correct it page by page as it 
comes to him. 

Many experienced copyreaders use the three-reading 
method, thus : ( i ) Glance through story to get its sense 
without correcting anything. (2) Read thoroughly and 
correct every detail as well as trim or expand. (3) Check 
over to see that story is coherent and corrections are 
right, as well as to gather ideas for headlines. Subheads 
are inserted during this reading. Type directions, guide 
lines, and other markings go in last. 


In addition to correcting the manuscript and numbering 
the pages, the copyreader must also mark it with printer's 
directions and label it for reference. All of these marks 
must be placed directly on the manuscript, in the margin, 
at the head of the first page, or at the end. The usual 
custom is to inclose them in circles so that the printer will 
not set them up. 

i. Type Directions 

Type directions are placed at the head of the first 
page, usually at the left. They indicate the type, length 


of line, and character of display. Ordinarily it is not 
necessary to specify the type for the headline further than 
to indicate the style of head No. 5 for instance since 
the printer knows from his schedule what type is desired. 
In newspaper work, the copyreader is not greatly con- 
cerned with the style of type since only a slight variation 
is possible. He may mark it 8-point or /-point, as the 
case may be, although the office practice will usually make 
that unnecessary. If he desires display, he may mark 
it "bold face" or "leaded/' or "indent i em/' or "i em 
hanging indention/' In some cases he may mark it 
"double measure/' meaning lines stretching across two 
columns. More exact type specification, necessary in other 
kinds of work, will be discussed in another chapter. 

2. Guide Lines 

Guide lines are signs or labels by which the copyreader 
indicates the content of a piece of copy and the position it 
should have in make-up. Their purpose is to facilitate 
make-up and to keep track of the many pieces of copy 
that he sends to the composing room. The term guide 
line, or catch line, includes a number of different kinds of 
labels with different purposes. One kind of guide line 
indicates the position of the story as a whole; another 
designates the position of various parts of the story. But 
whatever its purpose, the guide line is usually set up by the 
printer and placed at its head, so that the same label ap- 
pears in all the proofs until the paper has been made up. 
The make-up man removes the guide slugs when he 
places the stories in the form. 

"Every story is given a name or short designation as 
soon as it reaches the copyreader's hands. The name may 


be "Smith Murder," or "Council Meeting," or "Wreck 
No. I," or "Wreck No. 2" some short name that indi- 
cates its content. If the story is sent in one piece with 
headline attached, the name serves as a handy designation. 
If the story is sent to the composing room in sections the 
name becomes an identification of the various parts. 

For example, if the city council is holding a prolonged 
session and the staff of the morning paper is receiving the 
story in sections and rushing it to the linotype machines, 
it may be labeled thus : The first piece sent down carries 
the catch line, "Council Meeting" at the head and "More 
to come" at the end. A turned slug at the end of a galley 
is the printer's "More to come." As the various parts are 
written and edited, they are labeled "First Add Council," 
"Second Add Council," and so on. If other items are to 
follow the story under the same headline, they are desig- 
nated "First Follow Council," "Second Follow Council," 
and so on. When the lead is ready it is marked "Lead 
Council." The head that goes down a few moments 
later is marked, "Head Council." If after all is ready, 
the reporter brings word that the council had at the last 
moment delayed adjournment long enough to transact a 
piece of business more important than all the rest, the 
copyreader must prepare corrections. First he sends down 
a piece of copy marked "Insert Council After Lead." 
Perhaps there are inserts "A" and "B" or more. Then 
"New Lead Council." After that "New Head Council." 
Perhaps then he is forced to send instructions to "Kill 
Fourth Add Council" meaning to throw away part of 
the original story. With a series of guide lines such as 
these a copyreader is able to label each piece of copy with 
brief instructions to the printer. It wiU be noted that 


each invariably contains the original name of the story. 
In some offices these catch lines that designate the various 
parts of a single story are not set in type and do not go 
beyond the man who puts the story together in a galley. 
Very small stories are not ordinarily "slugged/* as the 
small headline is set on the same machine and serves as 
sufficient identification. 

Another use of guide lines is to indicate the department 
of the paper to which a piece of copy, item, or story, 
belongs. One story is labeled, "Society," another 
"Sports," another "Market." The catch lines are set in 
type at the head of the story; in some cases, in fact, the 
office has a series of department slugs already cast in 
larger type for this use. When a story appears in the 
proof with such a designation it is said to be "slugged/ 1 

The one guide line thit the copyreader never omits on 
any story is some mark at the end to tell whether or not 
the story is complete. If it is complete, as it stands, he 
always places an "end mark" below the last line. The 
mark may be a double cross, "#," or the telegrapher's end 
mark, "30," or simply "End." If the story is not com- 
plete, he writes "More to come," "More," or some definite 
information like "List to Follow." Unless there is some 
such designation at the end of the copy, the printer cannot 
be sure whether to close up and set aside the story or to 
hold it open for additions. 

In the writing of catch lines, care must be taken to use 
expressions that will not offend readers or cause a laugh 
if the slugs slip into print. "Add Society" may cause no 
damage, but "Kill widow" or "Capitol bunk" may be mis- 
understood. Some "slug" jokers carry the game too far. 

It must be remembered that the discussion of catch tine 


usages given above is only general and typical. Practi- 
cally every office has its own system, and the systems 
change constantly. Even the guide lines used in press 
association telegraph copy change almost year by year 
under new filing editors. 

In large offices, stories are "slugged" by the city or 
telegraph editor before they reach the copyreader. In 
small offices, the copyreader "slugs" the story, often using 
the first line of the headline as a catch line. 

3. By-Lines 

The designation of stories that are to carry "by-lines," 
or signatures of the writers, is usually determined by the 
city editor. But it is well for the copyreader to note the 
tendencies in their use. The extensive "signing" of 
stories came into use just a few years ago, partly to 
counteract the disappearance of "personal journalism" 
and the growth of "anonymous journalism." Among the 
first signatures were those of famous correspondents who 
were permitted to inject some of their opinions of the 
facts they reported. The press associations began "to 
sign" their best writers. The local staffs followed with 
by-lines for the sport editor, the society editor, other de- 
partment editors, and finally for local reporters. At first 
it was the "star" who received a by-line, and probably 
the name meant something to the reader. Now the by- 
line has become largely a matter of office discipline a 
reward for greater accuracy, better newsgathering, or 
clever writing and the "cub" is as likely to have a by- 
line as the star. Hence the practice is rapidly becoming 
meaningless and confusing to the public and is not likely 
to continue in its present form. 


4. Other Copyreading Terms 

Although every city and every newspaper office has its 
own copy desk terminology and slang, some expressions 
are quite universal. The terminology of printing and of 
headlines will be found in other chapters, but a few terms 
may be given here which refer primarily to the handling 
of copy. All illustrations are called art The point 
where a story turns to another column or page is the 
break. Clippings from other newspapers or the morgue 
are clips or exchanges. Miscellaneous filler matter, 
mainly reprint from other papers, good at any time, is 
grapevine, miscellany, or bogus news. Short stories that 
may be put in anywhere are fillers. A diagram of a page 
is a dummy'. A story that rival papers do not get is 
exclusive a beat, a scoop. A brief wire bulletin is a 
flash. Matter is marked follow copy if unusual spelling, 
punctuation, or style is to be reproduced. When marked- 
out material is to be retained, it is marked stet. Matter 
set half -column wide is half -stick. Hold for release means 
to set up but not to print until further orders or at the 
time specified in release date. Discarded copy is hooked, 
spiked, or killed. A story that must be printed under any 
circumstances is must copy. Material that is set up for 
future use is time copy. Matter that is already set up 
and is to be added to" a new story is pick up. Body type 
set irregularly around a cut or other display is run around. 
Stories that are sent to the composing room in takes or 
stories .that follow an event chronologically are running 
stones. The stories available for the day are on the 
schedule. Any headlines, boxes, or other matter used 
day after day and not reset is standing. Any tabulation 
is a table. An article that runs from the bottom of page I 


to the top of column i, page 2, is the turn story. Matter 
that has few errors is clean copy. When copy has all 
gone to the compositors, it is all in hand; when it is all in 
type, it is all up. The making up of pages is done 
on the stone. Young copyreaders must not confuse fol- 
low, or second-day, stories with Folo used as a catch line. 


1. The technique of learning to copyread: 

(a) Learn the symbols and how to use them. 

(b) Analyze kinds of errors and commonest forms of 

(c) Exercise in searching for errors without correcting 

(rf) Read different pieces of copy, searching in each 

for one kind of error. 
(*) Read a piece of copy again and again, searching 

each time for one kind of error see A. B. C. D. 

E. in chapter. 

(/) Practice 3-reading method. 
(g) Finally develop 2-reading method. 

2. Materials for class exercises: 

(a) At first, for comparative work, it is well for entire 

class to work on same story, mimeographed. 
Stories may be "made to order" to provide enough 
errors, or special kind of errors, through re- 
writing of newspaper stories. Some may be 
prepared to emphasize each type of error. Many 
of these duplicate exercises will give rudimentary 

(b) Ready-made copyreading exercises, in duplicate, 
may be purchased see Bibliography, Appendix 


(c) Read copy on carbon duplicates of stories written 

by students in reporting class or on student 

(d) Local offices of press associations will often sup- 
ply carbon copies of reports for a few days. 

(e) Many syndicates will supply their services for use 

in copyreading classes. 

(/) When students become proficient, they may edit 
copy of student newspaper, or "sit in" on copy 
desks of local newspapers. Rudimentary drill 
should precede this. 

3. Best results are accomplished when small groups (five to 
ten) work around the "rim" of a table with the teacher in "the 
slot," dealing out the copy, correcting it at once, and handing 
it back for further editing. This will develop speed, proficiency, 
and, if the session is two hours long, "staying power." Later 
students may take turns in the slot. 

4. Follow a style sheet strictly. A good way to master it is 
to take it up one section at a time, (i) Capitals. (2) Figures, 
etc. Note Three Hints. 

5. Class may draw up punctuation rules for class use 
"office rules" deciding on them by vote. 

6. All doubtful matters may be decided by class vote to 
establish "office policy." 

7. Draw up a list of trite expressions and adopt a "Word 
Diet," barring one after another. 

8. Draw up list of long Latin and Greek derivatives often 
found in copy with their Anglo-Saxon synonyms. 

9. Draw up a list of roundabout, "word-wasting" expressions 
and their short-cut synonyms. 

10. Draw up a list of words most frequently misspelled. 
Students may conduct "spelling contests" by trying to find all 
the misspelled words in very bad pieces of copy. 

11, Compile a list of all available local directories and refer- 
ence books and note their contents. 


12. Practice putting in subheads. 

13. Practice making up daily schedule of stories and pre- 
paring copyreader's record, working on news in yesterday's 

14. Prepare proper guide line and slugs for all stories in one 
issue of a newspaper. 

15. Supplement study of kinds of errors with references to 
other textbooks see Bibliography, Appendix III. 

16. Form a Bureau of Accuracy and carry out a check of 
every name and fact in local newspaper using all reference 

17. Read further on libel (see Bibliography). Look up state 
statutes on libel. Search for libelous matter in newspapers 
applying queries suggested. 

1 8. Elaborate short dispatches, by writing another paragraph 
or two of "background." 

19. Practice trimming stories to various specified lengths. 

so. Read newspapers constantly and criticize their copy- 

21. Reediting is good practice. After one student has read 
copy, another may criticize his work. 

22. Analyze news value, by studying relative interest of 
various stories on front page of a newspaper. 



FEW newspaper readers realize that the modern Ameri- 
can headline, as it appears in every daily and weekly news- 
paper in the land, is a native American invention and al- 
most an exclusive characteristic of our newspapers- that 
it is barely sixty years old that it is one of the most 
difficult and exacting kinds of writing that fall to the lot 
of the newspaper worker. It is one of the things that 
make the American newspaper up-to-the-minute, inter- 
esting, and easy to read. Like the summary lead of the 
news-story, the verbatim interview, and many other in- 
ventions of the newspaper men of this country, it was 
developed to meet the needs of our busy, wide-awake life 
and, for all the faults of which it is guilty in unskilled 
hands, it makes our newspapers what they are "news- 
papers" rather than "journals." That it is typically 
American is shown by the fact that it was adopted 
throughout the United States almost on the morning after 
its invention, and even today, sixty years later, is very 
slightly used in other countries outside the western hemi- 

When the American citizen gleans the news out of 
twelve or sixteen newspaper pages of fine print and 
acquaints himself with all the world has done overnight, 
in the short time given to his morning coffee or his ride 



to the office, he is doing something that only an American 
can do. He is extracting the gist of 60,000 to 80,000 
words of reading matter in the time required to read half 
a column. To be sure, he is getting only the gist of the 
news, but the elaboration is there also and is in such shape 
as to be found without much hunting through material 
that does not interest him. That is because his newspaper 
was written especially for him by men who realized how 
short a time he can devote to learning the world's events. 
It is because, before the paper was left on his doorstep, a 
newspaper desk man had painstakingly extracted the gist 
of all this news and put it in the most readily available 

Some critics, among them newspaper men, are now 
pointing out that .the overdevelopment of the "bulletin 
headline" is causing the American people to become a 
nation of "headline readers." That is, the typical reader 
is said to be acquiring a habit of scanning the headlines 
and reading none of the material below them. How true 
this impression may be and what effect it may have on 
the future development of the headline is beyond the 
scope of this book. But it is in order to point out the 
growing emphasis of the headline and its effect upon 
American thinking. The "slant" blazoned by the head- 
line is unconsciously taken up by the reader, regardless 
of the wording of the story, so that it colors his under- 
standing of the entire news event. The tremendous coin- 
age of short, vivid headline words is affecting all Ameri- 
can speech and writing. Because of the space limitations 
of the headline, the display type can give but a scrap of 
the news, and the reader who is content to read only these 
scraps lives on a diet of very small bits of the news. 


Furthermore! if ten persons write headlines for the same 
story, probably no two of them will present exactly the 
same angle. Should "office policy" enter in, the particular 
angle may have somewhat the effect of an editorial. From 
that point of view, the problem is many-sided and com- 
plicated. Since this volume is devoted primarily to the 
technique of headline writing, it must leave for other 
books the adequate discussion of ethics. But certainly 
no person should undertake the writing of headlines with- 
out having a thorough realization of the vast amount of 
public service and ethical consideration that is bound up 
in the work. 

When the statement is made that the American head- 
line is a characteristically American device, the statement 
refers, not to the form of the headline, but to its content. 
The idea of placing a title or heading in larger, blacker 
type over every article is as old as printing. The practice, 
also, of dividing this heading into a series of decks, or 
layers, is not new. But the idea of saying something of 
making a definite, concrete statement in the heading is 
the American invention. 

Early Headings 

Back in the early nineteenth century, when newspapers 
were weekly budgets of opinion-molding editorials, rather 
than recorders of events, editors placed at the tops of their 
columns such headings as "Local Intelligence," "European 
Events," "Marine News." But the heading was a mere 
label of the kind of news contained in the column and the 
same label might be, and was, used day after day regard- 
less of the significance of the facts that it announced. 
Even later when editors tried to make their daily news- 


papers more interesting by expanding the single title into 
a series of display lines extending halfway down the 
column the impressive headline was merely an elabora- 
tion of the first title or a series of subtitles appropriate to 
the variety of news reported below. To the American 
newspaper man of today it seems incredible that these 
trade ancestors of his could use so much type and say so 
little. It was as if they had purposely tried to put as 
many different labels on their bottle as possible, without 
revealing its contents. 

The New Idea in Headings 

Not until the days of the American Civil War did 
newspaper editors conceive of the idea of substituting for 
this meaningless label a headline with something to say. 
They discovered it then because the war was their first 
big "news story" and, in handling it, they were forced to 
develop the methods that are inherited by us of the pres- 
ent day. It was only within the previous twenty or thirty 
years that newspaper men had come to understand that 
news, rather than editorials, was what the American 
people wanted, and until their first big story came in the 
Sixties they had been entirely concerned with learning the 
vast number of things that constituted the news and how 
to report them accurately and speedily. Before the war 
they were so interested in gathering facts that they cared 
little about the form in which they were presented, and 
their readers were glad enough to get the news without 
questioning the time required to extract its kernel from 
the verbose, roundabout, boastful articles of the news- 
gatherers. But when day by day the news of the great 
war came into the cities, the editors began to realize that 


their readers were not satisfied to plow through lengthy 
dissertations on the difficulties encountered by the brave 
correspondent, finding at length his glowing account of 
the battle and its result. They wanted the result first and 
the explanation afterward. As the editors began to 
realize this, they turned the correspondents' stories around 
and put the result first developing .thereby what we now 
call the news-story summary lead. And to the same end, 
they threw out the label head which announced day by 
day "The Great War," or "News from the Front/' and 
used its space to present the answer to the readers' great 
question "Vicksburg is Taken" "20,000 Killed on the 
Potomac." The first editor who substituted such a war 
bulletin for the standing label was the inventor of the 
American headline. 

One Effect of War on Newspapers 

What the Civil War taught American newspaper men 
in headline writing was to bulletin the news in headline 
and lead. More recent wars have taught them other 
things. The Spanish-American War added to this the idea 
of using the same headlines as advertisements of the con- 
tents of their papers. It was during and just before the 
war of '98 that headlines grew in size and blackness and 
spread beyond the column rules until sometimes they 
stretched entirely across the front page. The sensational 
newspapers, to be sure, had been developing the advertis- 
ing possibilities of their headlines, but it was the Spanish 
War that brought the "spread" and "banner" into com- 
mon use. The World War brought many other changes, 
including the daily use of the banner by newspapers that 
had never used it before. For many years, newspapers 


will be assimilating the new ideas learned during the 
period from 1914 to 1918. 


The modern American newspaper headline has two dis- 
tinct purposes : to bulletin the news and to advertise the 

A News Bulletin 

The modern headline bulletins the news by presenting 
in display form the content of the story printed below it. 
It selects the gist and the most salient facts in the story 
and displays them in concise, readable form for the benefit 
of the rapid reader. It is a complete statement that would 
be clear in itself without the explanations that follow. Its 
many-deck form emphasizes the most interesting phase 
of the story in the first deck and presents, deck by deck, 
the subordinate facts that qualify it. If the headline is 
well written, the rapid reader need not read the story to 
know its content 

A News Advertisement 

The advertising value of the modern headline is a corol- 
lary of its bulletin nature. If the news bulletin is suffi- 
ciently interesting in wording and prominent in form, it 
catches the reader's eye and interests him in reading the 
story. This applies both when the reader is browsing 
through his paper and when he is looking over the news- 
stand to buy a paper. The banner head, which is merely 
a news bulletin in large type across the page, serves the 
same purpose in America as the "news contents bills" 


which the London newsboys display in selling their papers. 
It catches the eye and interests a possible buyer in what 
the paper has to sell. Its sales value is evidenced by the 
fact that it was first used by afternoon papers which de- 
pend largely on street sales for their circulation. Jt is 
doubtful now whether it is of value except on stttf 
editions. ^^ 

Is It Sensational? 

In considering the advertising value of the large, black 
headline, it is necessary to point out the fact that large 
headlines are not in themselves an indication of sensa- 
tionalism. The quality of sensationalism in American 
newspapers is not at all dependent upon make-up. A 
paper that is most conservative in its make-up may be 
extremely sensational in its appeal and "yellow" in its 
treatment of the news. Another paper with a screaming 
front page may, on the other hand, be decidedly conser- 
vative and fair in its news. It is merely trying to sell its 
editions. "Yellowness" is a matter of content and ap- 
peal, rather than of display and make-up. 


To constitute a bulletin and an advertisement of the 
news, the modern headline must possess several distinct 
characteristics : 

z. A Summary 

It must summarize the story which it heads and pre- 
sent the gist of the content. It should display the facts 
of the story in skeleton form. 


2. The Newsy Feature 

It must present in the first deck the feature of the story 
the fact that gives the story its news value. As all the 
emphasis is in the top deck, this should be the most inter- 
esting. Since the news value of the story often hinges 
upon certain ideas already in every reader's mind, the 
first deck should make a direct appeal to these ideas. 
Whenever the story's entire interest is embodied in one 
word or one phrase, as is often the case, that word or 
phrase should be in the first deck. 

3. A Verb in Each Deck 

The first deck, and as far as possible every other deck, 
should contain a verb. As a bulletin of events, the head- 
line must contain action, and only a verb or some part of 
a verb can express action. 

4. Definite Statements 

The headline should contain definite concrete informa- 
tion. General statements have no place in it. It is a 
bulletin of a specific story and could not be used over any 
other story. 

5. Easy to Grasp 

Each part of the headline should be easy to read. Un- 
less the reader can grasp it and understand it clearly at 
a glance, it is of little value as a bulletin. 

6. Complete in Itself 

The headline should be perfectly complete and clear 
in itself. It should contain the necessary qualification and 
explanation without needing the story to explain it. The 


puzzling, mysterious title to be explained by its story has 
its place in other kinds of writing, but not in newspaper 
writing. No newspaper reader can be expected to go 
back and solve the meaning of the headline after he has 
read the story. 


The form of the headline has become more or less 
established in American newspapers. Much latitude is 
seen in the size and character of type and the combina- 
tion of parts, but the character of the parts offers little 
possibility of novelty. Every headline is made up of a 
series of layers, or "decks," extending horizontally across 
one or more columns and separated by short rules. Ac- 
cording to present practice, a headline may be made up 
of one, two, three, four, or even more decks. The head- 
line of more than four decks is rare although formerly 
headlines often had as many as twenty decks. Each 
headline is built on a specified plan usually indicated in 
the office by a headline schedule, in proof or printed form, 
designating each kind of headline by number or letter. 
The schedule shows the models to be used for different 
purposes, as well as their form and typography. As the 
printers have the same schedule, the copyreader indicates 
by the key number or letter the model for which his copy 
is intended. In writing a headline of any given form, 
the desk man must take into consideration, not only the 
number of parts and the length of each part, as specified 
in the schedule, but also the number of letters and spaces 
in each line since the size of type designated regulates 
the number of letters in the line. 


Kinds of Decks 

The briefer Knes in larger type are known as display 
decks. The longer, less prominent decks placed below 
are banks. The four common varieties of decks are: 
(i) the cross-line; (2) the drop-line; (3) the pyramid; 
and (4) the hanging indention. 

I. The Cross-Line. The cross-line is, as its name 
signifies, simply a single line stretching across the space 
allotted to the headline. In the one-column head, the 
cross-line may be "flush," so as to fill the entire space 
from column rule to column rule, or it may be short and 
"centered" in the space between the rules. For example : 



2. The Drop-Line. The drop-line is a cross-line that 
has been separated into two or more parts in succeeding 
lines. This headline is also dubbed stepped line, step-line, 
break-line, /a/>-line, or split-line, in various offices. Its 
first line begins flush with the left-hand column rule and 
extends to within two or three units of the other rule 
leaving white space at the end : 


This two-line heading is an example of the commonest 
form of drop-line deck, called the two-part drop-line. As 


this and the following illustration shows, in the two-part 
drop-line the second line is indented two or three units at 
the left but extends to the right-hand rule : 


In the three-part drop-line, the middle line is of tht 
same length as the others but centered. All three lines 
are correspondingly shorter than in the two-part drop- 
line, for example : 


The four-part drop-line (and the rare drop-line of more 
parts) is built on a similar scheme and the lines are cor- 
respondingly shorter : 




3. The Pyramid Deck. The pyramid, commonly 
used as a subordinate deck, may have any number of lines 
from two to five. It is distinguished by the fact that 
each of its lines is shorter than the preceding line, and 
each is centered in the middle of the column. The last 
line sometimes contains only one word. It has the ap- 
pearance of an inverted pyramid and appears most often 
in three-line and four-line form. The following are 
typical examples : 

High Ooeait Rates the Only 


|!few Milwaukee Sanatorium Has 
I Capacity for 260 Patients 

Legislature Will Be Asked to En- 
large Appropriation Made 
for Work in 1925 

Judges McMurdy and Sadler 

Assert Law Would Curb 

Powers to Restrict 

Licenses j 

4. The Hanging Indention. This is a series of two 
or more lines, in which the first fills the entire space be- 
tween the column rules and the succeeding lines are in- 
dented at the left but flush with the rule at the right. The 
last line, indented like the others, usually does not fill the 
full space, although some newspapers require that the 


last line of a hanging indention reach the right-hand rule 

Mayor Now Disposed to Shift Park De- 
partment to Refectory Building in 
Franklin Park 

Children's Museum to Stay Mayor Dis- 
posed to Shift Park Department to 
Refectory Building in Franklin Park 

Members of Ministerial Union Adopt 
Resolution Opposing His Appearance 
Here as a Revivalist and Calling His 
Methods Irreverent 


As variations of these four standard deck forms, orig- 
inal new varieties appear constantly and are used to some 
extent. One is the flush drop-line, consisting of a series 
of lines that entirely fill the space between the column 




A more recent development is the pyramid top deck 
used by the Hearst newspapers and a few others : 




Combination of Decks 

With the four common kinds of decks as a basis, news- 
paper men have devised various combinations of the va- 
rious decks with the idea of combining symmetry with 
display. In so doing they have established certain pre- 
cedents that are seldom violated. The cross-line and 
drop-line are the forms ordinarily used in display lines. 
The cross-line is commonly used for any deck, although 
most frequently as the first or third deck. The drop- 
line usually appears as first deck, in two-, three-, or four- 
part form, and frequently as third deck, in two-part form. 
The pyramid and hanging indention are ordinarily sub- 
ordinate decks, or banks. They appear as intermediate 
decks second and fourth between display cross-lines or 
'drop-lines. Both forms may be used in the same head- 
line, customarily with the pyramid above, although usually 
the two intermediate decks are of the same kind. 

Headlines are most commonly built in two, three, or 
more decks. The present tendency is toward a smaller 
number of decks; the single-deck headline is common 


and two-deckers are more and more popular. Headlines 
may be conveniently classified as major heads, for im- 
portant stories placed at the top of the column, and 
subordinate heads, for less significant stories lower down. 

The major headline usually consists of three or four 
decks set in the largest headline type used in the paper. 
If it is a four-deck head, its first deck is usually a two- 
or three-part drop-line, its third deck is a cross-line or a 
two-part drop-line, and its intermediate decks are pyra- 
mids or hanging indentions. If it is a three-deck head- 
line, the only variation is the omission of the last bank. 

The subordinate headline rarely has more than two 
decks. The first is usually a two-part drop-line or a cross- 
line. The second is always a pyramid or a hanging in- 
dention. The most frequent combinations are a drop-line 
and a pyramid, or a cross-line and a hanging indention. 

Type Used in Headlines 

In the matter of type for their headlines, newspapers 
follow precedents as in other respects. Until recently, 
the top deck was almost always set in capitals, but many 
papers are now using capitals and small letters in many if 
not all of their headlines. Subordinate "bank" decks 
pyramids and hanging indentions are either in capitals 
or in small letters with important words capitalized. 

The style of type in the top deck is quite uniformly 
an extra-condensed bold-face letter, and for many years 
one of the many kinds of extra-condensed Gothic was 
most popular. In recent years, however, many news- 
papers have abandoned the Gothic to experiment with 
more rounded, decorative faces. Caslon, Cheltenham, 
Bodoni, and similar faces are now as commonly seen as 


the Gothic. The change in headline type, as well as the 
use of capitals and lower case letters (U. and L.C), re- 
sults from a recent interest in the readability of headlines 
and the desire for more pleasing typography a subject 
that was little thought of a generation ago. Certain 
metropolitan newspapers have employed typographical 
experts to design their complete headline schedules. A 
few have had special type designed. It is not uncommon 
for a newspaper to use the same family of type in various 
sizes, in all headlines. From the large cities, the idea 
is spreading to smaller newspapers and becoming nation- 
wide. It is far from the idea of using as many different 
types as possible, which maintained a few years ago. The 
average editorial staff is now intensely interested in 
typography, and the next few years are likely to see an 
increasing number of innovations. 

Headline type varies in size from lo-point to 36-, 48-, 
and even 72-point type in the first deck. The average in 
major heads is about 36-point, while in subordinate heads 
a smaller type is ordinarily employed. In other decks than 
the first, the usual size is 8-, 10-, or i2-point, although it 
may run larger in the three-deck cross-line. 


To fulfill its mission as a bulletin and an advertisement 
of the news, the headline has acquired a more or less 
stereotyped form which dictates the content and character 
of each deck's message. Part of this results from the 
relative display of the various decks and part of it from 
the demand in the mind of the reader which has been 
built up by headline practice. The experienced headline 


writer knows the requirements by instinct, for he has 
learned it from many mistakes and blunders. But the 
beginner, to develop the instinct, must resort to the out- 
lining of material necessary in the building of a successful 
headline. If he does this conscientiously while he is 
learning, he will form habits that will later enable him 
to do the work by instinct and do it well. 

We say that a headline is "built" and not "written," 
because each deck is put together separately and because 
the headline builder undertakes each deck as a separate 
problem and may write any deck first. If he has planned 
the separate parts carefully, the finished portions will fit 
together into a complete whole. 

The first thing to be noticed in the building of the 
headline is the manner in which it is to be read. This 
largely determines the contents of its various parts. The 
headline is designed, in the first place, to suit the tastes 
of two very different kinds of readers. ( i ) One is a rapid 
reader who scans rather than reads and takes into his 
mind only the words that his eye chances to fall upon. It 
is to interest him that the headline writer alternates brief 
display decks with more extensive decks in smaller type 
just as the newspaper writer crowds his most inter- 
esting words into the first lines of paragraphs. Each is 
striving to catch the hurrying eye and hold it. (2) The 
other reader is a more leisurely one who, once he has 
started to read a story, reads it from the top deck of its 
headline to its last word. Both kinds of readers are in- 
cluded in every newspaper's circulation and both must 
be pleased. The headline must therefore be clear and in- 
teresting to the man who reads only part of it, as well 
as to the man who reads it all. 



Since it is easy enough to write for the man who rea'ds 
it all, headline writers are more concerned with making 
an appeal to the rapid reader. This appeal is accomplished 
mainly by making some decks more attractive than others. 
And to be attractive to the rapid reader, the decks must 
be brief. In the four-deck headline, this appeal is made 
in the first and third decks. We can be reasonably sure 
that the first deck will be read, if any is, and by setting 
the third in type that makes it stand out beyond the second 
and fourth, we can count on having that read also. If the 
rapid reader peruses more than the first and third decks, 
it is likely to be after he has read the display decks. In 
the headline below, for example, we are quite sure that 
the first deck and the cross-line will be read : 


County Judge Scully 

Seeking Loophole in 

Law on Matter 


Says He Will Remove First 
Ward Officials Living Out- 
side of Precincts 

14 Unit* 


iK Uato 



For the sake of illustration we may take the four-deck 
headline as typical of other forms and use the above form 
as our model. In laying out the content of these four 
decks, we shall work on the supposition that the order 
of importance of the decks is first, third, second, fourth. 
To insure the proper emphasis we shall build them in 
that order. In the first deck we shall aim to summarize 
the entire story with the most significant feature in the 
first line. Then we shall choose the next most interest- 
ing fact, preferably a striking one, for the cross-line. 
The other two decks we shall devote to explanation of 
the display decks. 

We can best understand the process of headline build- 
ing by the study of a concrete example. For this purpose 
let us take this story which appeared in a city daily : 

Every known obstacle in the way of a 
start in building the new Union station is 
believed to have been removed. 

At yesterday's meeting of the city council 
an ordinance was unanimously passed, giv- 
ing the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad the right 
to build a new coach and freight yard in 
the vicinity of Fifteenth and Lincoln streets, 
This will move the railroad's property out 
of the zone of development of the Union 
station and leave a clear field for the $65,- 
000,000 project. 

The work on the new station must be 
started by March 23. March 15 is the time 
limit for beginning work on the Baltimore 
& Ohio's new yard. 

The council also passed an order in favor 
of the Pennsylvania Railroad, giving it the 
right to erect a temporary freight shed so 
that the work of wrecking the sheds along 
Canal street can be started. 


The first step in building a headline for this story is 
to select the facts that should be presented in it. They 
are in general as follows: 

The new Union station may now be built. 

All known obstacles are out of the way. 

This was accomplished by the city council's action yesterday. 

The B. & O. Railroad was given the right to build a new 
coach and freight yard at Fifteenth and Lincoln streets to leave 
room for the station must begin by March 15. 

It is a $65,000,000 project. 

The work must be under way by March 23. 

The Pennsylvania Railroad is permitted to build temporary 
freight sheds to clear Canal street. 


The significance of these facts was of course im- 
mediately clear to any newspaper desk man in the city. 
The project of building a new Union station had been 
hanging fire for many years and many obstacles had 
already been disposed of. The council's action in this 
case did not mean that it would be built or that the 
railroads would take advantage of its action. The story 
meant simply that the council had granted these privileges 
to remove what seemed to be the last obstacle and de- 
clared that the railroads must comply before the date 
specified to secure the privileges. To the headline writer, 
the story indicated that the outlook was promising, al- 
though he realized that the railroads might reject the 
proposal. His problem was to point out this significance 
without overstating the case. 

With the above schedule of facts as possible material 
for the headline, the next step is to arrange the facts in 
four groups to correspond with the four decks. The 
first group must contain the most significant fact, and 
for the third group, the facts should accord with the 


prominent position and the shortness of the cross-line. 
The outline might be as follows : 

1. The new Union station now seems assured. 

2. Action of city council removes last obstacles in way of 
$65,000,000 project by granting privileges to railroads one 
privilege is to allow the B. & O. to move yards to Franklin 
and Fifteenth streets. 

3. The work must begin by March 23. 

4. Pennsylvania Railroad allowed to build temporary sheds 
to clear Canal street. 

All that remains now is to express these groups of 
facts in words and phrases that will fit the required space* 
The first deck, we find, has two lines of 15 units each. 
Here are several possibilities that suggest themselves at 





All of these are weak in that the first lines contain 
little of importance, and each is guilty of overstating the 
facts. The first is especially bad because it splits "Union 
Station." Let us try in our next attempts to keep within 
the facts: 





These are closer to the facts, but in each the first line 
is insignificant. Some of them are too "fat" and some 
have other faults. Evidently, we may improve on them 
by reversing the idea and beginning with the subject, 


and our next efforts are an approach to a satisfactory 
first deck: 




The last two are better, but "field" is not exactly the 
right word, although the reporter used it in his story. 
Substitute a synonym, thus: 


This is more effective because "track" has a railroad 
flavor. It indicates the possibility without assuming too 
much. The use of the word "depot" instead of "station" 
would probably be permitted in such a case by most news* 


Deciding that the above is satisfactory as first deck, 
we are ready to attack the cross-line and try to express 
the idea we have decided it is to carry in the 20 units 


This first attempt is good but the line is five upits too 


It fits the space but is not entirely true. 


Space requirements are met but the line is not entirely 
clear. Noting that the issue on which we are working is 
for February 19, we may try a different way of express- 
ing the time : 


Not so good because the first is not clear and the sup- 
pressed subject in the second may cause difficulty. Per- 
haps the third is the best. 

We next juggle with the content of the second deck 
which is to contain about nine average words. As we 



expressed it in the outline, "Action of City Council 
Removes Last Obstacle in Way of $65,000,000 Project 
by Permitting B. & O. to Build New Freight Yards," 
it is twice too long. Try cutting the first expression, 
"Council Removes Last Obstacle in $65,000,000 Project 
by Permitting B. & O. to Build New Freight Yards." 
Still too long. "Council Removes Last Obstacle in 
$65,000,000 Project by Permitting B. & O. to Move 
Yards." This is shorter, but it is evident that we must 
sacrifice some of the content. "Council Removes Last 
Obstacle by Allowing B. & O. to Move Yards." This 
is possible but it involves hyphenating "obstacle," More 
juggling gives us this : 

City Council Opens Way 

by Allowing B. & O. 

To Move Yards 

The fourth deck undergoes similar manipulation to 
condense its content to ten words. "Pennsylvania Road 
Permitted to Build Temporary Sheds to Clear Canal 
Street," "Pennsylvania Road May Build Temporary 
Sheds to Clear Canal Street," "Pennsy Road May Build 
Temporary Sheds to Clear Canal Street." Our efforts 
to fit the space and avoid awkward breaks at the ends 
of the lines evolve this : 

Pennsylvania Road May Build 

Temporary Sheds to Clear 

Canal Street 


Selecting the best of the attempts for the various 
decks, we put the headline together as follows: 


(City Council Opens Way 

by Allowing B. & O. 

To Move Yards 


Pennsylvania Road May Build 

Temporary Sheds to Clear 

Canal Street 

Another headline writer might have arranged the 
material thus: 

1. The way is now clear for the new Union station. 

2. City council opens way for $65,000,000 project but rail- 
roads must comply by March 23. 

3. The last known obstacles are now removed. 

4. B. & O. permitted to build new yard and Pennsylvania 
Railroad given right to build temporary sheds to clear Canal 

Working on this basis he might have evolved the 
following headline: 



Council Opens Way for 

$65,000,000 Terminal 

Long Promised 



5. & O. and Pennsylvania Roads 

May Move Yards and 

Freight Sheds 

The experienced headline writer would hardly work 
out the material so minutely, but the process illustrates 
the way in which the headline takes form in his mind. 
The student should group his facts and formulate a writ- 
ten outline of the various decks, as illustrated above, 
while he is learning to arrange his material. 


The building of this headline has brought out many of 
the mechanical details involved in headline writing but 
they may be summed up to advantage in a series of 
mechanical requirements which have grown up gradually 
with the development of the headline. This list can never 
be complete for any time after the day on which it is com- 


piled, since every time a headline writer meets a new diffi- 
culty and solves it in a new and acceptable manner he has 
added another item. In general, however, the precedents 
are well established and recognized in all offices. 
The mechanics tQ be taken up are the following : 

1. Length of lines 

(a) Counting the letters 
(&) Latitude allowed 
(c) Form of copy 

2. Headline based on lead 

(a) Headline versus story 

3. Interrelation of decks 

(a) Interrelation of content 
(6) Interlocking of grammar 

4. Verbs in headlines 

(a) Verb merely understood 

(&) Infinitives and participles 

(c) Tense of verbs 

(d) Adverbs of time 

(e) Active verbs 

(/) Imperative headlines 
(ff) "In" as a verb 

5. Choice of words 

(a) Five hints concerning diction 

(&) Repetition of important words 

(c) Articles 

(d) Contractions and colloquialisms 
(*) Slang 

(/) Unconventional synonyms 

(fir) Reformed and simplified spelling 

(ft) Rhyme and alliteration 

(i) Allegorical headlines 

(/) Headline jargon 


6. Typographical style in headlines 

(a) Punctuation 

(&) Abbreviation 

(c) Quotation marks 

(d) Figures 

(e) Division of words * 
(/) Capitalization in banks 

7. Emphasis in headlines 

(a) Meaningless generalities 

(&) Exactness and definiteness 

(r) Label and wooden heads 

(d) Person's name as feature 

(e) Telegraph and correspondence heads 
(/) Anonymous headlines 

(^r) Ambiguity 

8. "Color" in headlines 

(a) Humorous headlines 
(6) Questions 

i. Length of Lines 

It seems almost unnecessary to repeat that the first con* 
sideration in headline writing is to suit the copy to the 
space allotted to it, but the problem of line length is the 
first stumbling block that the beginner meets. Because 
of necessity for symmetry, the words must exactly not 
almost fill the space. More headlines are faulty in line- 
length than in almost any other essential, and, because of 
this, it is almost necessary to lay down the rule, "When 
in doubt, consider symmetry first and content afterward." 
For, no matter how nicely a given series of words may 
express the idea, it cannot be used if it is too long or 
too short for the allotted space. "Type is not made of 
rubber," as the printers say. If a line will hold only 


19 units of type of a certain size, 19^ is as impossible 
as 40, for it will bulge the column rule. Too short a line, 
in the same way, destroys the symmetry, and an attempt to 
space out between the letters is an acknowledgment of 
failure. Unless the headline writer takes this carefully 
into consideration he will cause endless trouble in the 
composing room and will spoil the appearance of his 

Counting the Letters. Before attempting to write copy 
for any headline, the writer must ascertain the number 
of units which each line will hold and mark them opposite 
the lines on the headline model. In counting the units, 
he must figure each letter and each space (between the 
words) as a unit. This applies to all letters except M 
and W, which count as one and one-half units each and 
7 and the figure i, which count as one-half unit each. All 
punctuation marks, except the dash and the double quota- 
tion mark, count as one-half unit each the latter count 
as full units. A growing practice is to count spaces in 
all-cap decks as one-half unit. 

The process of "counting in" a headline deck may be 
illustrated thus: 

1-1-1 -i-i-i-ii-*-i-i~i- i-i-i-i 

i _i-i..i.i-j- 1.1. 14.1-1 -r-i 

l-l-l-l-i-i-H-H-i-i-i-i-H-i-l-l , , 

LEADER IS HURT, BUT 16# units 


U. S. AIRMEN GO ON '5 units 


A slightly different set of units must be used in count- 
ing display headlines set in capitals and small letters 

(u. and l.c.), and the system varies with the type used 
because of the difference of letters and figures in various 
faces. In general, if the lower case letter is .taken as one 
unit, the usual capital will be about one and one-half 
units. Also, since more variable spacing between words 
may be used, the space is reckoned as a unit Perhaps 
the best general rule is : "Count every letter and space as 
one unit each then temper with judgment' 2 

Latitude Allowed. After the number of units allowed 
in the line is ascertained, the writer can then figure out 
exactly how much latitude he may take. In the drop-line, 
he may allow himself a margin of one unit each way. 
That is, if the normal line contains 16 units, he may con- 
sider 15 or 17 possible; but he should not go below 15 
or above 17, for 18 or 19 will probably fill the entire line 
from rule to rule. In a cross-line, he should figure the 
maximum of the line, from rule to rule, and keep within 
that. Less care is required in the building of the pyramid 
and hanging indention, for a certain amount of space may 
be taken up between words. In these decks, it is sufficient 
to count the words, but one must consider the varying 
lengths of words. The best rule is to estimate the num- 
ber of twp-sylldble words or the number of words of 
six or seven letters each. Also the skillful headline writer 
takes care to estimate the length of the words so as to 
avoid breaking a word at the end of the line, and in 
case of a hanging indention whose last line is full he 
must be even more careful. 

Form of Copy. To fulfill space requirements it is best 
to write the head, line for line, in exactly the same form 


as it is to appear in type and to count the units in each 
line. In fact, most offices require copyreaders to write 
the headline copy deck-for-deck, line-for-line, word-for- 
word, as it is "lo be set up. Also, the copyreader indicates 
the form of each deck with the following conventional 
markings : 

For the cross-line: 


For the drop-line : 


For the inverted pyramid : 

Brings Suit to Cancel Leases 

Signed Last Fall Tenants 

Refuse to Move 

For the hanging indention : 

Badger Batmen Outhit Gophers 
But Runs Are Missing Hill 
Pitches Seven Innings 



No headline should be considered finished unless the 
number of units in its major lines exactly matches the 
number allowed by the schedule. The bad appearance 


of headlines that are too short or too long is illustrated 
by these : 




Legibility of copy is very important. Many a puzzling 
headline gets into print because the compositor cannot de- 
cipher the copyreader's longhand scrawl. If it were con- 
venient to do so, it is likely that newspapers would re- 
quire typewritten headline copy; it is advisable to type- 
write when possible. In all cases, unless the copyreader 
writes a very legible hand, he should print out proper 
names and all doubtful words. Many offices require this 
to be done. 

What happens when the copyreader's scrawl is misread 
is illustrated by this headline taken from a small news- 



The headline meant to say, "Start Revaluation of Prop- 
erty Soon." It illustrates some letters most likely to be 
confused in longhand i.e., small o and a, capital S and 
L t small u. This headline, "Man, Burned Alive, Breathes 
Through Pipe," resulted from misreading of the word 


2. Headline Based on Lead 

The mechanics of newspaper make-up establish the ne- 
cessity of basing the content of the headline on the 
content of the story's lead. All facts and ideas in the 
head must be taken from the lead, and no facts should 
appear in the headline that are not included in the lead. 
I This axiom is made necessary by the fact that there is 
1 no surety that any article will retain its original length 
I in print. The make-up man usually has the right to cut 
* down any story to suit the space at his command, and 
the breaking of unexpected news just before press time 
may require that he cut down any story even to the 
lead. The editorial department prepares for this emer- 
gency by crowding the important facts in every story into 
its lead so that the killing of any number of paragraphs 
at the end will not destroy the story's clearness. The 
headline writer prepares for the emergency by confining 
himself to the lead, the only part of the story that he is 
sure will appear. If the lead does not contain the facts 
that he feels must go into his headline, he must rewrite 
the lead so as to include the necessary additions. If the 
headline writer violates this rule, the reader is likely to 
have his attention drawn to a story by an interesting state- 
ment in a headline and then find that the story itself con- 
tains no explanation of the statement He does not know 
that the original story contained further explanation that 
was cut off in the make-up, but he jumps to the conclusion 
that the headline writer has read something into the story 
on his own account Even if the statement appears in the 
last paragraph, the reader is annoyed by having to read 
so far to find it The evil is especially noticeable when 


the entire headline is based on some minor detail men- 
tioned casually near the end of the story. In this discus- 
sion, lead means not necessarily just the first paragraph 
it means the entire introductory summary that "leads off" 
the story. It may be half a column long. 

Headline versus Story. The relation of the headline 
to the story should be after this fashion: The headline 
contains the gist of the story in skeleton form ; the lead 
elaborates this skeleton in an adequate summary of the 
principal contents of the story ; the running story elabo- 
rates the various items mentioned in the lead. 

The first deck of the headline should be built on the 
"big feature" of the story, the news angle that makes 
the story worth printing. It must present the "action" 
of the story; if there is no action, the most interesting 
fact or item. If it is a "follow" or "second-day" story, 
the first deck should indicate that fact by repeating some 
key word, fact, event, or name from the preceding story. 
The news value of the story usually hinges upon a "key 
word" or expression perhaps a name or place. This 
should be in the first deck. The head writer must ask 
himself, "Why is the story newsy, worth printing what 
word expresses this idea?" That word gives his start. 

3. The Interrelation of Decks 

In headlines of two or more decks, the interrelation of 
contents and grammar of the various decks is very im- 
portant. As was indicated in the sample of headline 
building, it is ordinarily necessary to make a schedule of 
the contents of the story and to outline the various decks 
before writing any of them. That is the mechanical 
process involved in solving the problem. 



Interrelation of Content. Each deck should, in gen- 
eral, be devoted to presenting a separate idea, and the 
ideas in any deck should not be repetitions of the ideas 
of other decks. Each should be an independent state- 
ment. In relative importance, the prominent cross-lines 
and drop-lines should be considered first, but to what 
extent may the pyramids be mere elaborations of the dis- 
play lines? Many headlines, like the following, use the 
pyramid only as an explanation of first line a reiter- 
ation of the first statement in more complete form : 


Former Governor of Mississippi 
Seems Sure of Senatorshlp 

But more common is the headline, like the following, 
in which the pyramid presents additional facts: 



Two Hundred Depositors Stand In 

Line to Start Accounts With 

the Government 

In headlines of more than two decks, when there is 
interrelation of content, each pyramid Is usually re- 
lated to the display line immediately preceding it. 

Interlocking of Grammar. Grammatical interrelation 
is often present where there is no interrelation of content. 
The brief, skeleton form of the headline makes necessary 
the suppression of many necessary parts of speech, and a 
part of speech may be expressed in one deck and under- 


stood in the next. The greatest difficulty is caused by 
the suppression of the grammatical subject. Whether 
the succeeding decks be an elaboration of, or an addition 
to, the idea of the first, space may require that one noun 
may do duty as subject for the verbs of several decks. 
The subject may be expressed in the first deck and under- 
stood in subsequent decks, thus: 


Notifies Democratic Leader Under* 

wood That If He Finds Press Re- 

port Correct Fur Will Fly 

If the predicate is more significant, the subject may be 
suppressed in the first deck and expressed in a later deck, 


Melrose Boy Ordered by Court to Remove 
Stain Caused by Spitting Tobacco 

Either practice is seen in the best newspapers, but both 
are full of dangers. Unless great care is taken, some 
of the verbs reaching backward or forward into other 
decks for subjects will be in the wrong tense, number, 
or voice, as in the following case: 


Says States Have Right to 


This is especially true when the subject is a collective 
noun like "assembly/ 1 "class," or "audience." The noun 
may be used correctly either as singular or as plural but 
both forms should not be used together, as here : 


Texas Senate Passes Resolution to 
Inquire Into Late Election 

In long heads there is danger in suppressing the subject 
of a later deck after several subjects have been expressed 
in previous decks any one of the previous nouns may 
be subject of the later verb. 

Even when the grammatical subject is expressed in 
each deck, it is well to keep the attention focused on the 
principal idea of the headline. Too many subjects, as in 
the following, result in too great scattering of interest: 


Raving Block is Hurled Through 

Gotham Jewelry Store Window 

in Broad Daylight 


Women Scream While Detectives 

Shadowing Thieves Make 

Prompt Capture 


One step beyond this is the suggestion that the verb of 
each deck be in the same voice, so that the tone of the 
headline may be uniformly active, or uniformly passive* 
An alternation of active and passive verbs sacrifices con- 

When the subject is suppressed in the first deck, care 
must be taken or the result may be like the following : 


Movement Started After One le Killed 
In Collapse of Structure 

Headlines are often seen in which no subject appears 
at all. This is especially bad when each deck requires 
a different subject, as in this headline: 


Directs Health Board to Investigate 
Complaints of Favor 

The grammatical interrelation of decks is sometimes 
carried to the extent of splitting a sentence between two 
decks, so that both are necessary for clearness. Such a 
practice is frowned upon by most newspapers since it is 
usually felt .that each deck should be a complete sentence 
in itself. The following is an example of the "contin* 
uous" style: 


Not In Derlglon, but to Throw Police- 
man off Scent 


This idea of breaking a sentence into a number of parts 
to develop decks has been carried to its highest terms in 
the headlines of the Cincinnati Enquirer, with a one-word 
top deck beginning a sentence that runs through the other 
decks. In most newspapers, such a headline is considered 
a novelty suitable only to a human interest feature story 
the one kind of story requiring original treatment in 
the headline. 

The common feeling among headline writers is that the 
headline should be considered a compact whole made up 
of a number of independent parts. So far as possible 
each deck should be independent in thought and gram- 
mar, but the several parts should emphasize and de- 
velop one general idea when put together. 

4. Verbs in Headlines 

It is now a recognized rule in most newspaper offices 
that every deck must contain a verb. The use of the verb 
was the real change involved in the step from the label 
heading of the old school to the bulletin headline of 
the present day. As soon as it became desirable to express 
action in the headline, the verb became necessary and, 
since action is now the chief characteristic, a deck without 
a verb is rare. Readers have become so accustomed to 
the verb that they are unconsciously dissatisfied with the 
headline without a verb, even if it is excellent in other 
respects. Besides giving action to the heading, the verb 
through its tense expresses the time of the story. The 
ineffectiveness of the headline without a verb is shown 



Verb Merely Understood. Often no verb is expressed 
but the heading is worded in such a way as to indicate 
the verb that is understood : 


Should Not Be Allowed to Wreck Po- 
litical Parties, Says Wilson 

Infinitives and Participles often serve as verbs in head- 
lines. The future tense may be expressed by the infinitive 
because it saves space : 


Tense. The usual practice is to write all headlines in 
the present or the future tense. The past tense is rarely 
used, if at all. Although the story may be concerned 
with an event which took place in the near past, the 
present tense in the headline increases the vividness and 
emphasizes the freshness and timeliness of the news. In- 
cidentally the present tense is easier to write because in 
most verbs it is shorter and requires no auxiliaries. Hence 
the headline of speech reports reads "Hopkins Speaks 
on Soil," not "Hopkins Spoke on Soil." If it is an event 
to take place in the future, the infinitive saves the space 
taken by auxiliaries : for example, "Hopkins to Speak on 

In stories announcing deaths, it is customary to use 
the present tense, thus: "John Smith, Banker, Dies on 
Shipboard" or "A. H. HUSTING, PIONEER, IS 

Adverbs of Time. Amusing headlines often result 
from the attempt to introduce the time into the head 


whether the tense of the verb should be changed accord- 
ingly is a mooted point : 


^Active Verbs. When conditions of emphasis and 
space will permit, it is desirable to use active verbs, rather 
than passive, because of the greater sense of action in 
the active voice ; also because no auxiliaries or preposi- 
tions are required. "Flood Sweeps Snake Valley" or 
'Tire Ruins Hill Home" are more effective than "Snake 
Valley Swept by Flood," or "Hill Home Ruined by Fire." 
But whatever the voice of the first deck, it is desirable to 
use the same in succeeding decks. The question of voice 
is, however, often determined by the demands of em- 
phasis. When the subject is less significant than the 
predicate, it is best to put the predicate first, in spite of 
the passive verb. Thus, "Governor Run Down by Tipsy 
Chauffeur" is more effective than "Tipsy Chauffeur Runs 
Down Governor," since the interest is in the word 

Imperative Headlines. When the subject of the first 
deck is suppressed and the line begins with the verb, the 
statement often exhorts the reader or urges him to action. 
Newspaper men consider this vocative or "imperative" 
headline objectionable. Its effect is seen here: 



"/" as a Verb. Many editors object to the following 
use of in to take the place of a verb : 


5. Choice of Words 

The words used in headlines should be short, concise, 
and specific. The limits of space absolutely forbid the 
use of long words, especially in display lines. Also, the 
heavy, black type of the headline is difficult to read 
when the words are long and the lines are not broken 
by frequent white spaces. The words must be concise 
and exact because the brief space permits of no rambling, 
and the headline, however short, must be clear at a glance. 
They must be specific and concrete so as to give an exact 
picture and create a vivid impression. The headline 
writer usually thinks twice before he uses a word of 
more than two syllables. He learns to speak concretely 
and to cast his thoughts into sharp, vivid words that snap. 
It may be said, in general, that words of Anglo-Saxon 
parentage are the most suitable for the headline both in 
thought and size. Compare the alternative wordings in 
the following examples : 







Five Hints for headline diction are: 

1. Avoid one- word lines. 

2. Avoid words of more than two syllables in display 


3. Use the concrete example, rather than the general idea, 

in headlines. 

4. Use words and phrases that apply to the particular 

story so specifically that they cannot be used to 
headline another story. 

5. Make a collection of three-letter, four-letter, and five- 

letter synonyms for headline use. The larger your 
collection, the better will be your headlines. 

Repetition of important words is to be avoided. It is 
a generally accepted rule that no word shall appear twice 
in any of the decks of the same headline. The rule does 
not apply, of course, to articles and auxiliaries, but does 
apply to all nouns, verbs, adverbs, and adjectives. 
Hence a broad vocabulary is needed unless much time 
is to be wasted on the hunting of synonyms. In the 
same way, the headline writer avoids duplicating the 
words and expressions used in the first few lines of the 
lead. Variety has much to do with the interest of his 

The monotony of repetition is illustrated by the fol- 
lowing headline : 


Mends Avenge Citizen's Death with 
Double Murder 

The use of synonyms is the easiest of all devices to avoid 


repetition and it is one of the commonest characteristics 
of the headline, as the following example illustrates : 


Ocean Liner, Centralia, Is Driven on 
California Shoals 

Articles. The value of space in the headline makes 
necessary in most cases the omission of articles and aux- 
iliaries. There is little room for "a/ 1 "an," "the," etc. ; 
the thought appears in skeleton form. Although they are 
generally omitted, it is not considered bad form to in- 
clude articles to help out the balance. 

Contractions and colloquialisms are treated in dif- 
ferent ways by different newspapers. In some offices their 
use is strictly prohibited ; in others much leniency is evi- 
dent. A contraction is most often permitted when it is 
in accord with the generally colloquial tone of the story. 
In such cases it is effective, while with a more serious 
subject it would be out of place. The colloquialism tends 
in general to give the headline a homely, whimsical tone 
and should be used accordingly, for example : 


Widow Smith Is Sure of It, for She's 
Had Four of 'em 

Slang also has its place in headline writing in most 
offices, although headline writers are ordinarily urged to 
use it moderately. It should never, of course, be used 
in the heading of a serious story for it gives a careless, 
undignified feeling that the reader unconsciously carries 
with him as he reads the story. Slang in headline writ- 


ing may be treated on the same basis as in news writing. 
It should never be used when the idea may be expressed 
as vividly and as briefly in good English. The chief 
objection to slang is that it is constantly changing and is 
not understood by all the readers of the paper. When 
there is the slightest doubt on this score, the necessity of 
clearness should bar it absolutely. 

Unconventional Synonyms. Much the same comment 
is due to the many handy, unconventional short syno- 
nyms that headline writers have invented to suit the needs 
of their work. Common among them are "probe" and 
"quiz" for "investigate," "solons" for "legislators," 
"dope" for "prediction," "clash" for "controversy," 
"grill" for "cross-examine," "white plague" for "tuber- 
culosis," "haven" for "hospital," "dip" for "pick- 
pocket," "Pennsy" for "Pennsylvania," "grab" for 
"acquisition," "fake" for "pseudo," "hello girl" for 
"telephone operator," "finest" for "policemen," etc. 
Some of these are actual misuses of good English words 
such as "suicide" as a verb, "deny" for "refuse to 
grant," "win" as a noun, etc. These words are short 
and vivid; they express large ideas in limited space, and 
on that score many newspapers permit their use. But 
headline writers generally are admonished to use them 
with care and to be as loath to coin a new word or mis- 
use an old one in headline writing as in other writing. 

Reformed or simplified spelling is not permitted in the 
headlines of most newspapers any more than in their 
stories. It will be a boon to the headline writer if it is 
ever generally adopted, but now few newspapers use it. 

Rhyme and alliteration are in disfavor. The jingle of 
a rhyming drop-line is usually considered objectionable 



and the stuttering alliteration is frowned upon. Occa- 
sionally when the tone of a story demands a humorous, 
trivial treatment, the headline writer seeks rhyme or al- 
literation for their effect. But in the average serious 
story the jingle is bad because it calls attention to itself, 
at the expense of its content. As in all other newspaper 
writing, headline words should convey the thought with- 
out obtruding themselves. The effect is illustrated by the 
following : 



Allegorical Headlines. Except in feature stories, 
headlines built on allegory, metaphor, or literary allusion 
are to be avoided, unless clear to the most ignorant, e.g. 
WATERTOWN SQUARE (Indian monument fell 

Headline Jargon. There has been a tendency in recent 
years toward excessive use of slang and synonyms that 
is resulting in a "headline jargon" that is as bad for 
newspaper men as for the public. The jargon is at its 
worst, of course, on the sport page, but it is rapidly 
gaining strength in news pages. It is much seen in 
"serial" stories of large import, such as noted trials, and 
there it usually colors and exaggerates the facts. The 


total import of the jargon is -that all society is a seething 
turmoil; doubtless this is the feeling of the ignorant 
reader. For instance, when the mayor and city attorney 
disagree over a small legal matter, the headlines shout 
"fight," "clash/' "split," and the ignorant expect blood- 
shed and arrest. When the Sewing Circle decides to look 
into the quality of moving pictures, the head writer digs 
up the old blood-stained "quiz" and "probe." Any news- 
paper front page, except the best edited, illustrates 
"headline jargon." Is it necessary to good headline 
writing? A study of these same front pages will prove 
that it is not. In some rare cases it results from "office 
policy." For the rest, it is merely thoughtlessness, lazi- 
ness, "rubber stamp" work. It is the same story as the 
careless news writer's habit of seizing the worn-out trite 
stand-bys that every other careless news writer uses. The 
same kind of "Word Diet" for the head writer, to 
weed out these old-timers from this vocabulary, will 
save him from jargon and give him originality. 

6. Typographical Style in Headlines 

The ordinary rules of English and newspaper typo- 
graphical style are followed in general in matters of 
punctuation, abbreviation, quotation, figures, etc., al- 
though some special uses have developed. 

Punctuation is used as little as possible. No periods 
are used at the ends of decks except, in some offices, at 
the end of pyramids and hanging indentions. The period 
is seldom seen at the end of display decks. Commas are 
almost never used in display decks and are avoided as 
much as possible in other decks. When the use of two 
independent clauses, not joined by a conjunction, re- 


quires a separating punctuation point, the semicolon or the 
dash is used. The usual custom is to use the semicolon 
in display decks because it requires little space thus : 


In pyramids and hanging indentions, the dash is uni- 
formly used, thus : 


are Thrown, Shots Fired One] 
of Wounded Men Is Dead 

Apostrophes are of course used when necessary; question 
and exclamation marks appear in their proper places. 

Headline writers lately are learning to do many inter- 
esting things with punctuation, but it must be admitted 
that much of the "tricky" punctuation that has come into 
display decks is merely proof of inability to meet the re- 
quirements in a legitimate way. For instance, the use 
of a comma to show omission of and (first example) and 
the stringing together of nouns without verbs, separated 
by semicolons (second example) are just lazy shortcuts: 




Abbreviation in headlines is usually governed by office 
rule. Every newspaper, to be sure, permits in its head- 
lines any abbreviations sanctioned by its style sheet 
such as "Mr.," "Mrs.," "Dr.," "Co.," etc. How much 
beyond the style book the matter of abbreviation may be 
carried depends on the office. Some newspapers permit 
"U. S.," "Prof.," "U. of W.," initials of railroads, and 
similar abbreviations; others strictly forbid them. In 
some cities, such initials and abbreviations as "L" for 
elevated railroad, "Y. M. C. A.," "S. I. T. & L. Co." 
for "Southern Iowa Traction and Light Company," 
"I. R. T." for "Interborough Rapid Transit Company," 
are permitted. The practice may be carried so far as 
to allow "S. P. U. G.," for "Society for Prevention of 
Useless Gifts," "S. P. C A." for "Society for Preven- 
tion of Cruelty to Animals," "L W. W." for "Indepen- 
dent Workers of the World," "I. R." for "Initiative and 
Referendum," "J. D. Jr." for the son of the oil mag- 
nate, "G. O. P." for "Republican party," etc. It may be 
said, in general, however, that excessive abbreviation is 
to be avoided, because it does not look well in type and 
because the meaning is not always clear. When abbre- 
viations are overdone, as they are in some newspapers, 
they become an offensive part of "headline jargon." Good 
headlines can be written without ever using abbreviations ; 
the task is harder, but the headlines are the better for it. 
, Quotation marks are not used to any great extent in 
headlines because they take valuable space. The quoting 
of a single word is seldom necessary since any word usage 
that is common enough to appear in the headline is too 
well known to require quoting. The use of quotation 
marks around slang words is usually a feeble apology. 


Occasionally when the headline is a direct quotation of 
some man's statement, quotation marks are used to set it 
off. Many newspapers, however, consider quotation marks 
unnecessary here; a dash is often used instead. Besides 
taking space, the marks do not look well in type: 




Figures are largely used in headlines of many news- 
papers because they are striking and saving of space, but 
their use is frequently regulated by office rules. In some 
cases the headline writer must follow the rules laid down 
in the style sheet for all news writing. In other cases he 
may use more figures than these rules permit. The usual 
practice is to establish a definite dividing line such as 
10 or 100 to use figures for all numbers above the 
line and to spell out numbers below except in certain 
specified cases. The commonest custom is to use figures 
for numbers of two or more digits and spell out one-digit 
numbers. In the headline, also, it is permissible to begin 
a sentence or a deck with figures in violation of the copy 
rule. When a number expressed in figures is longer than 
the corresponding word as "1,000,000" or "million" it 
is wise to use the word. A common usage is shown here : 


Seven Drowned When Perry Steamer 
Hits Shoal and Sinks. 


Most offices frown upon "padding out" by spelling out 
numbers for which the style sheet specifies figures. 

Division of words is not considered desirable in head- 
lines. Although it is permitted to some extent in pyra- 
mids and hanging indentions, it is bad form to break a 
word at the end of a line in display decks. The bad ap- 
pearance of hyphenated drop-line is shown here : 


In the same way it is bad form to divide an infinitive, 
a noun and its article or modifiers, a preposition and its 
object between two lines. The separation of an unimpor- 
tant word, such as "an," "and," "but," "to," etc., is a vio- 
lation of the idea of logical division of lines. Thus : 



If possible, the words should be divided so that the first 
line is a separate unit : Not, ACTRESS DENIES HER 

Capitalisation in Banks. In decks which are set in 
capitals and small letters, the usual rule is to capitalize all 
words of more than four letters all nouns, pronouns, 
verbs, adjectives, adverbs, interjections, auxiliaries, both 
parts of a compound verb, and prepositions that are part 
of a verb (except infinitive sign). A simpler way to 
remember the rule is : 

Capitalize all words except articles, conjunctions, and 
prepositions of less than four letters. 


7. Emphasis in Headlines 

The emphatic sentence beginning plays as important a 
part in headline writing as in other newspaper writing. 
The first words of every deck are the ones that catch the 
reader's eye. Headline writers, therefore, make an effort 
to place the emphasis at the beginning of each deck. This 
is especially true in two- or three-part drop-lines as top 
decks. The first line should contain the most striking 
words in the deck, even if this requires grammatical 
transposition. In the following examples the second is 
more effective : 







The last lines, however, must not be neglected. It is 
decidedly bad practice to pack the gist of the statement 
in the first line and then to trail out the following lines 
with useless words to fill the space. The following will 
illustrate : 



Every word in the headline must count. This display 
is too valuable to be wasted on words that simply fill space. 


Too many young headline writers pad out second and 
third lines with empty words to reach the required number 
of units. If the thought selected for the deck, when writ- 
ten in its briefest form, does not fill the space, it should 
be discarded or amplified with concrete details that add to 
its significance. Seldom is there a thought so bald that 
an attempt to give it greater concreteness will not fill the 
deck and improve it at the same time. The following 
examples show what might have been done with the 
padded decks above: 



Meaningless generalities have no place in headline 
writing. If the reporter has failed to reduce the thought 
to its most concrete form, the headline writer must analyze 
his expression to discover the exact meaning or signifi- 
cance. The general head has little defense. Witness the 
following generalities and the concrete language that 
might be used in place of them : 








The "Label" or "Wooden" Head which merely indi- 
cates the kind of story and might be used over several 
stories of the kind *. g., COURT HAS BUSY DAY 
is to be avoided. This "stock" headline SCHOOL 
be used once a week, but NEW HIGH SCHOOL IS 
URGED BY DR. JONES probably could not. 

Exactness and dejmiteness in headline writing, as in 
lead writing, requires the use of names and identifications 
as well as general allusions to the actors, victims, places, 
etc. This is especially true of the three- and four-deck 
head which makes possible exact reference. The actor 
should not be passed over as merely "he" or "she" ; some- 
where in the several decks the name should appear. In 
accident and crime stories, the exact place should appear 
somewhere. The headline, in other words, should not only 
be a skeleton of the story, but a bulletin an exact, definite 
summary that would be clear without future explanation. 

A good way to write a headline is to write a ten-word 
telegram of the news use the gist of it in the top deck. 

Some tests of exactness and concreteness in headlines 

I. Might the headline be used over any other story of the 
same general content? 



2. Does it answer as many of the five Ws (who, when, 

where, what, why) as are needed for quick grasp 
of the news? 

3. If it is a follow or second-day story, does headline 

refer to preceding story? 

4. Is the "keyword" of the news in the first line? 

5. If a person's name is the feature, is it in the top 

deck? If the name is not reasonably certain to be 
recognized, does it have proper "news identifica- 
tion"? (N. B. The use of first names of promi- 
nent or notorious persons, their nicknames, or sup- 
posedly clever allusions to them, may easily be over- 
done, at the expense of dignity or courtesy.) 

Telegraph or Correspondence Headlines should, if pos- 
sible, carry the name of the city in the top deck. The 
average reader is much more interested in an accident or 
crime story in the home city than in one a thousand miles 
away. When he sees FALLING CORNICE KILLS 3, 
INJURES 50, his first idea is that it is local and concerns 
familiar persons or buildings. But when he finds in the 
story that it happened in another city, he feels duped. The 
headline should have read, FALLING CORNICE 
KILLS 3 IN CHICAGO LOOP. It is such small mat- 
ters that arouse criticism of the press. But, on the other 
hand, do not say "Here" in a local headline. 

In weekly or community newspapers which are develop- 
ing the use of bulletin headlines over correspondents' let- 
ters, the headline is valueless unless it carries the name of 
the locality concerned. Even when the best news item 
in the letter is used as a lead and is bulletined in the head- 
line, the news value depends on the place, since the letters 
are read only by those who are interested in the place 



concerned. For example, NEW CANNERY TO BE 
BUILT NEXT YEAR appears to be local news; but 
carries the proper "place label" 

Anonymous Headlines are those that do not fix au- 
thority, responsibility, or source; they announce "Says," 
"Urges," "Plans," "Advises," "Will," without telling 
"who." They are to be avoided. For example, SAYS 
different news value when the subject of "says" is a judge, 
a motorist, a motor club, the mayor, or some one else. 
Some offices try to avoid this by forbidding the verb- 
beginning, but the reverse, MOTOR FINES TOO 
HEAVY, IS CHARGE, is not much better. 

Effort to obtain concreteness should not lead the head 
writer to go beyond the story for facts. No statement 
should appear in the headline that is not contained in 
the story. 

Ambiguity is closely related to the question of emphasis. 
Ambiguous words often lead to ludicrous and puzzling 
headline statements. They can be avoided only by great 
care in the use of words with two meanings and especially 
words that may be used either as nouns or verbs and as 
verbs or adjectives: 




8. "Color" in Headline Words 

Because of the extreme brevity and baldness of head- 
line statements, the writer must think of the meaning that 
the reader finds between the lines, as well as in the words 
themselves. He must remember that, since he has room 
only to suggest a thought, he must word his suggestion in 
such a way as to 'direct the reader toward the proper cdh- 
clusion. He must, in other words, consider the connota- 
tion of his words and phrases. In the parlance of the 
newspaper office, connotation is called "tone" or 
"color," and the headline which leaves an opening for 
the reader to "read something into the story" is said to 
be "colored." ; 

Impartiality is a headline virtue demanded in almost 
every newspaper office. The headline writer is given no 
more liberty in the matter of expressing opinions than is 
the reporter. There are, of course, a few newspapers 
that deliberately write headlines to prejudice the reader 
for or against the story, but these newspapers ar$ in the 
minority. Independent, unbiased newspapers generally 
insist that their headlines shall do no more than bulletin 
the. news. They forbid any attempt to prejudice the 
reader or to pass judgment on the facts. If the headline 
writer has an opinion, he must keep it to himself. He 
must be as impartial toward the facts he handles as the 
ideal judge and allow none of his personal feelings to 
influence his treatment of them. 

Perhaps the best test of "color" is this : Can the reader 
tell from the headline whether the writer approves or 
disapproves of the news or of any person in it? The 
necessity of fitting a statement into a definite number of 


letters and lines forces the use of synonyms that hit "just 
beside the mark" in connotation. One such word carries 
a wrong impression into the reader's mind that may undo 
'all tfa^ effort for accuracy and exact qualifications of a 
careful reporter. After one has juggled hopelessly to 
express an idea in a difficult headline, his sense of ac- 
curacy becomes dulled it is sometimes necessary to ask 
the man at the next desk to pass on the results of his 

Partiality and color usually creep into headlines in- 
directly by way of the associations of the words and ex- 
pressions used. An unobtrusive adjective buried in a 
long deck may give the thought a twist that will try the 
case of the story before the reader learns a single fact. 
A derogatory noun used as a synonym may carry with it 
a prejudice that precludes open-mindedness. An over- 
vivid verb may qualify its subject to the extent of reading 
in a final verdict. The following is an example of a 
headline that is an editorial upon, as well as a bulletin of, 
the news : 


Humorous Headlines. The tone of a headline should 
strictly accord with the tone of its story. If the facts are 
serious and the story is a straightforward statement, the 
head should give the same feeling. If, however, the facts 
are treated lightly or humorously by the reporter, the 
headline writer may give his bulletin a humorous twist. 
While summarizing the news, he will also put the reader 
in the proper state of mind for the humorous article. The 


following are typical examples of successful humorous 
headlines : 





Nigh Sixty Year, 
but Knows a 'Dip 9 

Questions are often effectively used in headlines. The 
headline may ask a direct question of the reader to interest 
him in the story this kind of question is seldom effective. 
Or the content of the headline may be put in question 
form to indicate that the facts are problematical or suppo- 
sititious, or to show that they represent a possibility. On 
occasion this use of the question is effective, but it may 
easily be overworked. The presence of several question 
headlines on the same page gives the impression that the 
content of the entire newspaper is an uncertainty. The 
following illustrate the two kinds of question headlines : 





The faults to be avoided in writing headlines are, in 
general, the violations of the newspaper precedents noted 
above. There are, however, certain faults that deserve 
special comment and repetition. 

i. Waste of Space 

A newspaper headline contains no room for generalities, 
and yet the wasting of headline space is one of the com- 
monest faults. Unless the headline gives a concrete, 
definite statement of fact, that is clear in itself without 
further explanation, it is ordinarily a bad headline. The 
headline must not only give the nature of the news bul- 
letined, but must include the exact facts that make it news. 
Many headlines refer to the chief actor in the story as 
"he" without divulging his identity ; they detail the results 
and circumstances of an event without mentioning the 
place or time of its occurrence. The fault may be avoided 
by testing the headline with the questions that it suggests. 
Does it answer all the essential questions, e. g., when, 
where, who, how, why? If it does not answer some of 
them exactly, it is not a good headline. 

The best way to overcome this fault is to develop a 
larger vocabulary, particularly of short words needed in 
headlines, and to combat "headline jargon." The matter 
may be treated both negatively and positively: (i) Put 
yourself on a word diet, barring the trite words day by 
day. (2) Make a business of gathering three-letter, four- 
letter, five-letter synonyms, for the search will increase 
your vocabulary. (3) Avoid one-word lines. (4) Avoid 
words of more than two syllables. (5) Use the concrete 


example, rather than the general idea. (6) Write a head- 
line that fits no other story except the one in hand. 

2, Lack of Symmetry 

"Looks" are of great importance; the modern headline 
is an arrangement of display type designed to improve the 
physical appearance of the newspaper. Unless its lines 
are of proper length and balance, it fails it destroys the 
appearance of the page. The headline writer who writes 
lines too long or too short, who fails to count the units 
and to fit the schedule, is failing in half the requirements. 

3. Inaccuracy 

This fault takes many forms, some of which have been 
discussed in earlier pages, and constitutes probably the 
fundamental consideration of ethics in headline writing. 
"Inaccuracy" ranges all the way from unintentional er- 
rors, thoughtless "color," careless use of words, to intenr- 
tional overplaying, dishonesty, exaggeration, arid "policy" 
editorializing. It is impossible in this book to discuss 
adequately the ethics of headline writing, but the subject 
must be considered by young copyreaders as one of the 
most important angles of present-day newspaper work. 
Every time a new means of display is devised to increase 
the sales value of the headline, the ethical problem is 
accentuated. Some aspects and causes of inaccuracy are : 

(a) Carelessness and Lack of Knowledge. Uninten- 
tional inaccuracy may come from one of these : ( I ) Hazy 
or insufficient knowledge of the subject of the story; (2) 
failure to read story carefully; (3) haste in slapping 
down the first headline that one thinks of; and (4) heed- 
lessness and irresponsibility in regard to the newspaper's 


relation to the public. Here are some examples taken 
from newspapers: BOILER BLAST ON SUGAR 
PLANTATION KILLS NINE (story said "Refinery") 
one appearing, three failing) CHURCH REFUSES 
AID PLEDGED FOR RELIEF (refused one plan of 
whites, one Indian) BUSINESS MEN TALK IN 
RUM SALE PROBE (testify in court) DANCE ACT 
STOPPED BY POLICE CHIEF (movie show, not 

(&) Too vivid words. Attempt to make story bright, 
to say much in short space, causes apparent misstatement 
of fact e.g., 80 POLICE VETERANS FACE 
OUSTER (story said they retire on pensions) SO<- 
OFFICERS BUT PRESIDENT (abolished offices) 

(c) Omission of qualifications. Scraps of ideas, 
stripped of the careful qualifications which were in the 
original statement and the reporter's copy, are displayed in 
heads. This is often seen in reports of addresses and 
interviews, e.g. FAITH IN CONGRESS IS SPEAK- 
ER'S PLEA (he said he had faith) BONDSMEN TO 
FORFEIT BAIL FOR MAZARRA (story said if he 
does not report Monday) PROM ELECTION IS 
DEADLOCKED (merely close ; recount ordered). 

(d) Assumptions Given as Facts. A police theory, a 
lawyer's explanation, a detective's hunch, a reporter's 
guess, presented as such in the story, appear as facts in 


the headline, e.g. OKLAHOMA LAWYER DUPED 
TO DEATH (story said it was police theory) SLAY 
YOUTH IN MYSTERY CAR (body found, rest 
IN CLOSED CAR (physician's theory). 

(e) False Quotation. Often the headline makes a 
direct quotation, credited to some one in story, of an 
expression taken from the reporter's lead summary or of 
the head writer's size-up of the meaning of a long state- 
ment. The headline should not quote anything except the 
exact words that are quoted in the story, e.g. NOT 
use those words in story) "GERMANY PAYS 6 BIL- 
LION BEFORE WE PAY" (quotation of lead sum- 
mary, not statesman's words). 

(/) Exaggeration or "overplaying.'' This results 
from head writer's overzealous attempt to make the news 
attractive, e.g. 107 FALL IN GERMAN POLICE 
RIOT (seven killed, 100 wounded) BLAST IN MINE 
TRAPS 14 (story said they were unaccounted for, 
thought to be off duty) HUNDREDS SHOT IN 
STORMED (mob tried to). 

(g) Personal Equation. What the individual copy- 
reader sees in the story makes a great variation in it. 
These headlines were all written for the same story: 


(h) "Policy" Headlines. Few newspapers desire their 
editorial policy, in regard to politics, foreign affairs, 
finance, labor, strikes, boycotts, race conflicts, or other 
public questions, to color their headlines. But readers can 
often find what appear to be "policy" headlines. To some 
extent, this results from (i) the fact .that the headline 
writer is overconscious of his newspaper's editorial policy, 
(2) certain "stock" notions and prejudices current in the 
newspaper profession, (3) familiarity with the majority 
point of view of the public. A conscious effort is neces- 
sary to keep these out. e.g. COAL STRIKE PEACE 
NEAR (somebody says so in story) LEAGUE NEAR 
COLLAPSE, GENEVA VIEW (but not official view) 
(master builders ask voluntary reduction of wages) 
GERMANY TO STOP PAYING (may stop, if). 

(i) Trial by Headline. In stories of crime and arrest, 
the headline must not go beyond the actual status of the 
case. If the headline insinuates that a man is guilty, just 
because he is arrested, or if one angle of the testimony is 
overplayed, public sentiment may be so aroused that a 
fair trial is impossible. If random facts from unsup- 
ported charges made in complaints are played up, the per- 
son stands convicted even if the case never gets to court 
particularly true in divorce petitions. With the growth of 
sensationalism, "trial by newspapers" is coming to be a 
great problem, and most of the evil is in the headlines. 
said she volunteered information) NEGRO CON- 
such confessions) TOOK "OTHER WOMAN" OUT 
IN FAMILY AUTO (says divorce petition). 


(/) Libelaus Headlines. Newspapers are often sued 
for libelous statements in headlines, although there is no 
libel in the story below. This results from stripping 
away of qualifications. Omission of the name or use of 
alleged are of little avail, e.g. WOMAN INVOLVED 
IN PASSING FAKE BILLS (police think so) MAN 
ARRESTED FOR THEFT OF CAR (released at once 
story said). 

(k) Headline Editorials. When a headline goes be- 
yond the bare facts in the story and expresses an inter- 
pretation of, or comment on, the facts, it is an editorial 
and its big type gives it more force than anything on the 
editorial page. It is often difficult to draw a clear line, 
but, for one case of such "editorializing" under orders, 
dozens may be found which result from haste, careless- 
ness, personal prejudice, or the mere forecasting of the 
results of the event, e.g. RIOTOUS SCENES IN 
COURT (no riot in story) MAGNUS TELLS 
PLAN (abolishes it) NEGRO TREK NORTH 
SHOWS 1923 RISE (story gives year's figures but no 
increase shown). 


x. The Jump Head 

This is a name given to the headline written for the 
second part of a story that is "broken over" from the 
front page to an inside page. The jump head introduces 
the continuation. In some cases the jump head is written 
by the desk man in advance of make-up ; in others it is 



written by the make-up editor as the emergency of break- 
ing the story arises. The usual jump head expresses the 
same facts as the original headline in less space and with 
less display. 

The jump head may be the original head set in smaller, 
more extended type, so that the same words fill the desired 
space. It may be the same headline, in type and wording, 
with one or more of the later decks omitted. Sometimes 
it is merely a repetition of the first deck in its original 
form. Generally, however, the jump head is the original 
head rewritten in more compact form. If the top deck of 
the first headline is a three-part drop-line, the jump head 
may be a two-part drop-line. A two-part drop-line may 
be changed into a single cross-line. In some cases the 
original words are used ; in others only part of them ap- 
pear. The jump head usually makes less attempt to sum- 
marize the story; its function is that of recalling the 
original headline. All of these things are regulated by 
office practice, however, and many headline schedules 
contain models of the jump heads to be used with various 
major heads. Here is an example of a headline and its 
jump head : 





2. The Banner, or Streamer, Headline 

This is a headline in large type that stretches across the 
top of an entire page. Banners are used by American 
newspapers (i) to emphasize the most important news 
and (2) to assist newsboys in selling papers on the street 
or the news-stand. The banner sometimes appears as a 
single cross-line which serves as the top deck of the head- 
line of the principal news story. Some papers carry a 
series of banners bulletining one or more stories. The 
top cross-line is, of course, concerned with the most im- 
portant news and is given greater display than those that 
follow it. The individual streamers serve as a striking 
table of contents of the columns below. 

In the writing of the banner head, the advertising ele- 
ment predominates since the headline serves the purpose 
of "the news contents bill" supplied to newsboys by Eng- 
lish newspapers to assist them in attracting attention to 
their wares. Hence the type of the banner must be suf- 
ficiently large and clear to be readable at a distance, and 
its content must be such as to attract the eye and arouse 
interest or curiosity. With this requirement in mind, the 
headline writer constructs his banner heads in accordance 
with the same rules followed in other headlines. He uses 
a verb and makes the headline a complete statement of 
fact. He counts his letters and spaces and adjusts the line 
to the space allowed. When office practice encourages 
variety in make-up of succeeding editions, the headline 
writer often decides the wording of the banner without 
reference to space and then selects a type that will fit the 
proper space, choosing large or small extended or con- 
densed, type according as the statement is short or long. 


Before the World War, the banner headline was al- 
most entirely confined to editions intended for street sale 
and was thus most commonly used by afternoon papers. 
Big war news, however, led other papers to adopt the de- 
vice until it came to be standard on almost every front 
page. After the war, when big news became scarce, oc- 
casion for the banner declined, but the habit persisted. 
The result was "overplay ing* ' of less important news "to 
dress up the page." Sales value of stories, rather than 
real importance, came to be the basis a street accident or 
striking crime that the newsboys might shout. The value 
of such a device for carrier or mail editions is question- 
able, but the banner has run rampant, not only in the 
large city press, but in community dailies, country week- 
lies, and even high school papers. Meanwhile certain 
prominent newspapers have persistently avoided it, "ex- 
cept when the news warrants." 

Among the names now applied to the banner are 
"streamer," "ribbon," "flag," "line," and other nicknames. 

The relation of the banner to the regular column head- 
line of the same story is in general treated in two ways : 
( i ) The banner is considered as a sales bulletin, complete- 
ly set off by a cut-off rule; the column headline is written 
without regard to it, arid the story is placed anywhere 
on the page. (2) The banner is looked upon as the top 
deck of the story's column headline; the story is placed 
at the top of the column, and the cut-off rule is broken 

Blanket line is the name most often applied to the page- 
wide headline that has come into use across the tops of 
inside news or department pages. It is used for its deco- 
rative value to dress up the page. 


3. Spread Heads, or Layouts 

The ordinary newspaper headline occupies only one 
column, and when it grows beyond the column rules it is 
distinguished by the name "spread," or "layout" ; the lat- 
ter word is borrowed from the art department. The 
spread was invented by a class of newspapers that try to 
avoid symmetrical and conventional make-up in display- 
ing the news, and it has since been taken over by the 
majority of American newspapers. In character and 
content it differs from the usual one-column headline only 
in that it spreads over a number of columns. There are 
no rules for its form ; originality is its chief characteristic. 
Its top deck, which is usually a drop-line of several parts, 
stretches across the top of the entire layout and may head 
any number of columns. The pyramids and cross-lines 
below it may stretch across the entire width of the layout, 
or cover only part of it. Sometimes several small decks, 
alike or different, occupy places side by side under the top 
deck. The story beneath may begin in any column under 
the spread, or up among the decks. 

To write a spread heading, great imagination and 
knowledge of type are necessary. The attempt is to dis- 
play the news in a striking way and to give the page an 
attractive appearance. The editor ordinarily makes a 
diagram of the top of the page and lays out the space care- 
fully before he begins to write. After deciding upon the 
nature of the spread and the kind of type for each deck, 
he estimates the letters and spaces accommodated in each 
line* With this diagram as his model, he writes contents 
to fill it exactly. In the spread heading, more than in 
any other kind of headline, the words must fill the lines 


4. Subheads 

Many newspapers break up their stories with small dis- 
play lines, called subheads, inserted in the columns at 
specified intervals. Their purpose is to make the paper 
easier to read. Such display is used as the linotype machine 
affords black-face, capitals, or small capitals and the 
subheads are usually shorter than a full line. There are 
no rules governing the frequency of the subheads, but 
the ordinary practice is to insert a subhead about once in 
200 words. In content they correspond to chapter head- 
ings, since they summarize the paragraphs that follow or 
suggest their content in a vivid, interesting way. It is to 
be noted that a subhead is usually a complete statement, 
with a verb, and that it attempts to express the idea in 
an original way. In some cases, the subhead is inserted 
some distance ahead of the discussion that it suggests so 
that the reader must go almost to the next subhead before 
he finds its explanation; by that time the next subhead 
has caught his eye and his interest is carried further. The 
subheads are written in by the copy editor as he prepares 
the copy for the printer. They are seldom used in stories 
of less than 200 words, and a common rule in newspaper 
offices is that not less than two subheads shall be used 
in one story. 

5. Divisional or "Folo" Headlines 

Some newspapers employ, besides the subheads within 
stories, another series of display lines to mark larger 
divisions of the story. They head the individual "takes" 
or angles developed by different reporters or coming from 
different parts of the country. Thus they head the parts 
slugged "Folo." For example, in the report of a wide- 


spread storm, the first take is a local story; each later 
dispatch from another city carries a divisional head. Or 
in the composite story on the day's automobile deaths or 
prohibition raids, telegraph dispatches, with "folo heads/' 
follow the local story. 

6. Outlines, Overlines, Captions 

These are names used for the titles and explanations 
that accompany illustrations. The overline is placed above 
the picture and is usually more of the nature of a label, 
or title. Many newspapers, however, apply the principles 
of headline writing to their overlines and make them 
newsy and interesting. Besides giving the name of the 
person or thing pictured below, the overline usually points 
out the picture's relation to the news. The overline is 
usually set in display type. The caption, which occupies 
a position beneath the illustration, is usually longer and 
more of the nature of an explanation of the picture. It 
describes the person or thing illustrated and points out the 
significance of the cut. Combined with the overline, it is 
often so complete that no further story is necessary to ex- 
plain the picture. Captions and overlines are usually writ- 
ten by the desk men and must fit the more or less irregular 
space left by the art department in preparing the illustra- 

7. News Digests 

When a newspaper publishes a news digest or index on 
the first page, the parts of it are written by the copyreader 
as he handles individual stories. As he sends the head- 
line to the composing room, he sends along a line for 
the news index. 


8. Other Headline Terms 

When the entire headline is set in a frame of column 
rules, it is a boxed headline. Fancy type ornaments used 
in headline display are dingbats, bugs, etc. Dashes used 
to separate part of stories or headlines are dubbed dinky 
dash, jim dash, etc. In some offices, the column head of 
the story covered by the banner is called a drop head. 
Newspaper pages are divided in matters of display by the 
fold across the middle. The name-plate at the top of 
page i, because it is cast in one piece, is often called the 
logotype or the flag. Stock headlines used day after day 
and not reset are standing heads. Reporter's by-lines are 
often called title lines. Headlines for tops of columns 
are top heads. Cutlines used beneath pictures are often 
called underlines. The statement of ownership on the 
editorial page is the masthead or flag. 

Every newspaper office has its own slang for headline 
usages, and newspaper slang varies in different cities and 
in different parts of the country. 


1. Compile headline schedules of representative newspapers, 
noting number of units and words allowed in each line. 

2. Headline exercises may be divided into several steps: 

(a) Comparative work, in which all the students write 
the same form of headline for the same story. 
(Material may be obtained by clipping current 
stories from distant newspapers, mimeograph* 
ing without headlines, assigning same headline 
form used in the newspaper, and later com- 
paring students' headlines with newspaper's 


(b) Top deck drill. One after another, practice writ- 

ing the most typical top decks of representative 
newspapers, going from the easy, many-unit 
two-part drops to some of the very difficult 
types. Here again the students may work on 
the same form for the same story to compare 

(c) Multiple decks. Working with the same story, 

students will first begin "digging out" the out- 
line for two-deck, three-deck, and four-deck 
headlines. After sufficient practice in out- 
lining, they will write the headlines, all work- 
ing on the same schedule for same story. 

(rf) Different schedules. Each student will choose a 
different newspaper "for employment" and 
master its headline schedule. Then, working 
on the same story, students will write head- 
lines according to the schedule selected by each. 

X*)' Rapid drill on copy desk with teacher or student 
in the slot, dealing out copy to be edited and 
headed. Entire desk should use same headline 
schedule, but students will handle different 
stories. As each headline is completed, it is 
criticized and handed back for revision. The 
material may be current local, press association, 
or syndicate copy. 

r (/J Headline writing and editing for student news- 
paper and "sitting in" on desk of local news- 

3. Practice again and again outlining material for multiple- 
deck headline. 

4. Emphasize form and legibility of headline copy. 

5. In all headline copy, place total number of units at end 
of each line. Check them. 

6. Search constantly for good and bad headlines in news- 
papers, as well as for novelties. 

7. Prepare classified lists of three-letter, four-letter, and five- 
letter headline synonyms. 


8. Prepare lists of words of current "headline Jargon 91 and 
bar them. 

9. Decide by vote what abbreviations shall be permitted. 
10. Practice writing various kinds of jump heads. 

n. Practice writing subheads and division heads, as well 
as blanket heads for inside pages. 

12. With some stories, prepare lines to go into the News 

13. Practice designing spreads, first by searching for good 
examples and imitating them; then by laying out page and 
working out original typographical schemes. 

14. Practice writing cut-lines for news and feature pictures. 

15. With later stories, try writing banner headlines. 

1 6. Good practice in deciding content of top deck may be 
obtained by writing ten-word telegram of the news. 

17. Gather examples of "colored" and inaccurate headlines. 

1 8. Look into old files to see headlines of former years and 
to note development. 

19. Search newspapers for examples of each problem and 
point discussed in above chapter. 

20. Rewrite faulty headlines found in newspapers. 

21. Draw up a headline schedule for a particular small com- 
munity newspaperdaily or weekly. 



PROOFREADING is the mechanical process of checking 
the errors that a printer makes in setting type. It is entirely 
concerned with mechanics and typography ; it is not con- 
cerned with style or content. Unlike copyreading, it has 
nothing of the creative in it and implies no license to cor- 
rect or alter the author's words. The final authority is 
the writer's copy; the proofreader's office is to make a 
detailed comparison of this written copy with the printer's 
mechanical version and to note all deviations from it. 

Printer's proof is a hastily made impression of type 
matter devised to make easier the task of checking up the 
errors in the typography. It is prepared by the printer as 
soon as the type is set, and the operation is called pulling 
a proof. The printer places the type matter in a long 
metal tray, called a galley, passes an inked roller over the 
face of the type, spreads a sheet of paper over the galley, 
and takes the impression by passing a small roller over 
the paper or by hammering it into the type with a block 
of wood. The resulting impression is called a galley 
proof. When the proofreader has noted the errors in the 
galley proof and the printer has corrected the type ac- 
cordingly, another proof is taken a revised proof or 
revise. If a reading of the revise shows up many errors, 
a second revise may be necessary. Still further proofs 
are required after the type has been taken from the galley 



and made up into page form. These are called page and 
form proofs. 

Book Proof 

In the magazine or book publishing office, the original 
galley proof and enough revises to insure mechanical per- 
fection are read by the office force. A final galley proof, 
pulled after the last corrections have been made, is sent 
to the author for any small alterations in content he may 
desire. The type is then paged, and a proof of each page 
is read by the office proofreader and the author. If the 
page forms are to be electrotyped, a proof of the electro 
pages is read as a final checking up before the plates are 
placed on the press for printing. Even after the matter 
has been made ready on the press, the first two or three 
impressions, form proofs, are folded and read to see that 
the pages are in the right positions and printed properly. 
If the pages have not been electrotyped and the printing 
is directly from type, a pressman must watch the printed 
impressions constantly to note any breaking down of type 
or sinking of type areas resulting in imperfect impression. 

Newspaper Proof 

In the newspaper office, the first galley proof is cor- 
rected by professional proofreaders, or by members of 
the editorial staff if the paper is small. After the revise, 
a proof of each galley is sent to the managing editor, so 
that he may look over the day's edition before press time ; 
another is sent to the news editor or make-up man to be 
used in making up the pages. After the final revise of 
the galleys, no further proofs are taken until the type has 
been placed in the forms of the printed pages. A form 


proof is then usually pulled for a survey of the make-up 
and the catching of any mixing of type or articles in the 
making-up. The only real proofreading done in the news- 
paper office is concerned with the galley proofs. But 
every newspaper worker should know how to correct 
proof quickly and accurately, for only the larger offices 
afford professional proofreaders. These are members of 
the mechanical force, rather than the editorial staff; in 
fact, they are usually members of the typographical union. 

The Copyholder 

Since proofreading is little more or less than a com- 
parison of proof with copy, the proofreader usually needs 
an assistant, a copyholder, to follow the original copy. 
One of them reads aloud punctuation marks, capitals, 
paragraphing, type changes, as well as words while the 
other, following the copy, notes discrepancies. As the 
errors are discovered the proofreader marks the proof. 
This method is necessary to insure the discovery of omis- 
sions and additions that would escape notice if the copy 
were not followed. Quite often the proofreader follows 
the lines with a card to aid in concentration. 

How the Printer Revises 

Before one can correct proof intelligently, he must 
know how the printer handles it in revising the type. The 
more or less unusual means employed by the proofreader 
are explained by the fact that the printer does not read 
through the proof in search of corrections; he simply 
glances down the margins of the proof and makes the 
corrections indicated there. He is not likely, therefore, 
to notice any corrections placed in the body of the proof. 


To attract his notice, it is necessary to place all corrections 
in the margins opposite the lines containing errors and to 
mark them large enough so that he cannot miss them. 
When the proofreading sign in the margin has called his 
attention to the error and indicated its nature, he looks 
through the line for another mark indicating the exact 
location of the error. Both marks are necessary to insure 
accurate correction. 


The proofreading marks used in all offices and known 
to all printers, except in the smallest country offices, are 
as follows : 

Kind of Type 

Ctbp. Change to capital letter. 

#. c Change to small capital letter. 

Change to lower case, or small letter* 

Change to Roman type. 

Jltsf. Change to Italic^ type. 

&. Change to bold-face type. 

4>/ Letter marked is from wrong font. 

-J- x Letter marked is broken or imperfect. 

O Letter marked is reversed, or upside-down. 

Insert period. 

y Insert comma. 

}/ Insert semi-colon. 

Insert colon. 


V Insert apostrophe. 

Insert quotation marks, single or double. 
Insert one-em dash* 
Insert two-em dash. 
ff Insert hyphen. 


ft Make lines parallel. 

SSS, Make lines straight. 

* Transpose order of elements marked. 

f Move to the left. 

Move to the right. 
Move up. 
Move down. 

Indent one em, 


Put in space between words. 

Take out space or correct uneven spacing be- 
tween words. 

Take out all space and close up. 
Qose up but leave some space. 
Insert proper ligature. 
Push down space that prints up. 
Insert space between letters. 
Straighten lateral margin. 


Insert space between lines* 
Reduce space between lines. 


ft Begin a new paragraph. 

Afe V Do not begin a new paragraph. 

A***** ** Make elements follow on same line* 

Substitute full form of word or number. 

Substitute figures. 

Insertion and Omission 

Caret indicates place where element in margin 
should be inserted. 

Oblique line through letter indicates that it is 
to be changed or removed in accordance 
with margin mark. ^ 

Take out element indicated. 

Don't make change indicated; let it stand. 

Allow word to remain as it is. 


Is this right or according to copy? 
See copy to find what has been omitted in 


There are many technical questions which arise in the 
use of the standard proofreading marks and many are 
settled only by office rules and practice. But the young 
proofreader will do well to consider them before he at- 


tempts to break away from old established customs or to 
establish new precedents. 

1. Position of Marks 

All proof marks should be placed in the margin opposite 
the error. The printer will not see the correction unless 
it is so indicated. But the margin signal is not enough. 
The error must also be indicated in the line so that the 
printer may know exactly to what word or letter the 
correction refers. 

2. Use All the Marks 

The young proofreader often wonders why it is neces- 
sary to use so many different marks when, as it seems to 
him, half a dozen will do the work as well With an 
intelligent printer, he reasons, it is scarcely necessary to 
indicate more than the position of errors and the omission 
and addition of words. In a large number of cases, to be 
sure, the error is so obvious that the printer needs only 
to have his attention called to it. But proofreading, like 
all other processes involving great accuracy, should be 
done with the greatest accuracy possible, and a sufficient 
number of marks to cover all possible cases is necessary. 
Sometimes the printer is not so intelligent as one might 
wish ; often he is lazy and averse to making any correc- 
tions that he can avoid. The proper proof mark, however, 
settles the matter beyond all dispute. In the case of the 
intelligent, reliable man, it saves him the time necessary 
to puzzle out what the proofreader meant. Again, the 
use of all the marks indicates to the printer that the 
proofreader knows his business and .that is often a very 
good impression to create in the composing room. Ex- 




fHatt and Fire/ Destroy Experiment*. V 
Plant Men In Blazing /lothe** *, 

Leap from Wlitdowe * -*/ 

^. ~^~ / 

Pittsfield, III! June. 25. Seven men* ff 
were probajy fataJy burned today by . 

an explosion of gasolene in the nforkff. / 
ot the ^tlas Experiment Company. 
All of the fourteen persons on the 
Becond^oor leaped from the windows 
blazing like torches. 
. The explosion came at 3/20 p. in. 
while 'most of the workmen were in 
th* /aboratory on the teeond floor* 
Without warning a 20. gallon retort 
1)Ur JK into flame A ^ Dd Dazing petrol 
.M fftti V1** itj, ".I 1 78 ' ! !)'(')* 
-was seo flying about the room. 

The cause of the explosion is not. 
"known. Experiments On a ne.w pro- 

I C^BS for manufacturing^ were being; 

I made at the time; and Is it thourJit; 

' tttat a retort-aii^i a.l lamiiini <Jjeftame 


_]"the first his/ of ilame was followed 
by a blast or blaming gasolene/' aid 

Charles R-- /amuels, foreman of the, 
laboratory, tnto afternoon. "We boy 
h*d no time/ for . flreBcapes we 

T . (Note; /his example of Corrected 
Proof is the printed version of the 
newspaper story which was edited "' 
page *8.* The flrst deck of its h< 
(line was st by Jiand; tto resf '* 
tory was composed on a 



perience justifies, all in all, the use of all the proof marks 
and it is best to begin by learning them all at the outset 

3. Connecting Lines 

Very often newspaper proofreaders use a connecting 
line between the error in the line and the mark in the 
margin. That is, they draw a line from the error, through 
the typed matter, to the margin and place the proof mark 
on the end of it. This method may work out satisfac- 
torily if there are few errors in the proof, but in general 
it is bad practice. If the proof is very "dirty" or has 
more than two errors in the same line, the many connecting 
lines result in great confusion. The standard practice is 
better in every case. 

4. Neatness 

Every proofreader should take pride in the neatness of 
his work. Even if he does not consider neatness an evi- 
dence of his skill, he must remember that his careless work 
may result in serious confusion and delay in the compos- 
ing room. He should use small proof marks, especially 
when he is reading closely set small type, and should place 
them exactly opposite the line which contains the error. 
If the mark is above or below the line, the printer does 
not know to what line it belongs. He should also use 
both margins; that is, he should place the correction in 
the margin nearest the error. The printer is accustomed 
to working in from one margin to the center of the line 
and then going to the other margin to work toward the 
center again. If a mark is placed in the left-hand margin 
to indicate an error near the right-hand end of the line, 
the result is confusion. 


5. Red Ink 

Many proofreaders use red ink because the contrast 
between the red and the black emphasizes the corrections 
and because it is easier to make small, legible marks with 
a fine pen than with a pencil. 

6. Oblique Lines 

The use of slanting lines beside proof marks is often 
a cause of confusion and it is well to adopt a uniform prac- 
tice. A good rule is to use an oblique line, at the right of 
the letter or word, to indicate that the letter or word is to 
be inserted. If the oblique line is used only in this case, 
it will have a definite purpose, besides separating marks. 
For example: tr. means transpose, but tr/ means insert 
tr; lead means more space between lines, but lead/ means 
insert the word lead; cap. means capital letter, but cap/ 
means insert the syllable cap, etc. 

7. Marks in the Line 

To mark the location in the line of errors indicated in 
the margin, a similar uniform practice may be adopted. 
The caret ( A ) should be used to indicate places where 
words, letters, or punctuation points are to be inserted. 
The oblique line drawn through the letter or point will 
indicate that the letter or mark is to be taken out or 
changed. The use of the two marks for the two pur- 
poses is a great aid to the printer in finding the errors 
to which the marginal corrections refer. 

C. Inserted Material 

In inserting matter that has been omitted, if the omis- 
sion consists of more than two or three words, it is best 


to write the omitted material in the margin near the proper 
place, put a line around it, run an arrow to the printed 
line, and indicate the place of insertion with a caret in 
the line. Material to be inserted should never be written 
between the lines, and the proofreader should take pains 
to write it legibly. If more than a line has been omitted 
or several lines have been mixed up, it is well to bracket 
the faulty lines and write "See Copy" in the margin. 

9. Follow Copy 

The proofreader should always follow the author's 
copy. In every case, the author's copy and the editor's 
corrections on it are his final authority unless office rules 
prescribe that he shall follow a certain typographical 
style and certain rules of spelling in spite of the author's 
practice. In most cases, however, the editor will adapt 
the copy to office rules and the proofreader may rely on 
his editing. In no case should a proofreader attempt to 
correct proof unless he has the copy for comparison. 


Space Justification 

In specifying the removal or insertion of letters or 
words, the proofreader must always bear in mind the 
mechanical difficulties under which the printer works. 
The compositor is dealing with one of the most inelastic 
things in the world metal type and one of the most 
immovable the column rule. He cannot put into a line 
one more letter than the line will hold; if he does, the 
line will bulge the column rule and cause the lines above 
and below to drop out He cannot take a word out with- 


out putting something in its place ; else the line will be too 
short. When the proofreader calls for corrections that 
involve the insertion or removal of material in a line, the 
printer has only one recourse he must catch up the added 
or subtracted space by altering the lines immediately above 
or below the changed line. The only elastic thing in the 
line is the space between the words and in any given line 
its limits of elasticity are seldom more than the width of 
two or three letters. Hence if the proofreader calls for 
the insertion of an eight-letter word, considerably more 
than can ordinarily be caught up in one line, the printer 
must run the last word over into the next line, catch up 
what he can there, run over into the third, and catch up 
the rest there. Sometimes one insertion or one removal 
will require the altering of four or five lines. The ex- 
perienced proofreader tries, when the character of the 
copy permits, to minimize this difficulty by taking into 
consideration the alteration required by a correction. If 
he is merely substituting new words, he counts the letters 
and tries to fit them to the space occupied by the old. If 
he is adding several words, he tries to insert just enough 
to fill an entire line so that only two lines will be affected. 

Linotype Justification 

The problem of catching up space occupied by correc- 
tions is even more serious in linotype composition than in 
hand-set type. Here each alteration requires the resetting 
of the entire line, and each line that is affected by the 
catching-up process must be entirely reset. From the 
proofreader's standpoint this is bad, because, in resetting 
a line to make a correction, the printer may make an error 
in some other part of the line. 


Irregular Spacing 

The proofreader sometimes objects to seeing large 
spaces between words in one line and small spaces in the 
next and is moved to call for better spacing. Before he 
makes the marks, however, he should look over the lines 
carefully to see whether better spacing is possible without 
much alteration and catching up. Every line of type 
must "justify" must come out even and sometimes the 
variation in word lengths makes impossible even word- 
spacing. Sometimes, of course, a printer is careless in 
this regard and wastes space in justifying; again he may 
purposely space out material to increase the amount he 
has set since he is usually paid on a space rate. In such 
cases of careless or unnecessarily wide spacing it is 
well for the proofreader to catch the printer up and re- 
quire proper justification in his work. 


In addition to the errors that may be classed as varia- 
tions from copy spelling, punctuation, and content 
there are certain mechanical errors that the proofreader 
must watch for carefully. 

i. Alignment 

Every line of type should be reasonably straight ; that 
is, the bottoms of the letters should all be on the same 
straight line. In the case of material set up on a worn- 
out typesetting machine, perfect alignment is almost im- 
possible, but in the case of hand-set material, almost all 
imperfect alignment is due to the printer's carelessness 
and should be corrected. 


2. Broken or Imperfect Type 

This mechanical fault is common in all kinds of set 
and the strictness which the proofreader uses in correct- 
ing it depends upon the character of the work. Very 
often what appears to be imperfect type is merely imper- 
fect proof, resulting from a hastily taken impression or 
poor ink. But since the proofreader has no way of know- 
ing what is the real cause and, if the work is particular 
he is wise to mark the doubtful type. His mark on 
the proof will result, at any rate, in an inspection of the 

3. Wrong Face 

The presence of type of a different size or face in any 
printed matter is rare in machine work but more or less 
common in hand-set work. It results from what the 
printer calls "dirty case," a composing case in which the 
type has been carelessly distributed. Since the printer 
works more by feeling than by sight, some letters are 
more likely to be "wrong face" than others. The chief 
offenders are i, o, and s. In some kinds of work it is 
necessary to watch carefully to see that the small capitals 
i and o do not creep in as lower case. 

4. Reversed Letters 

Upside-down characters are very common in hand-set 
work, especially when certain fonts are used. Those that 
cause the chief difficulty are the lower case o, s, u, n, p, d, 

c, e. Sometimes a reversed n is used for u, reversed p for 

d, etc. In every case the error can be noted by the fact 
that the reversed letter is slightly above the line in most 


5. Other Faults 

Other mechanical errors that often get past the sharp- 
est eye are : the insertion of a word that does not material- 
ly alter the sense ; the repetition of the last word or syllable 
of one line at the beginning of the next; and the substi- 
tution of one word for another of almost the same length 
and meaning. 


It is well for the proofreader to be able to identify the 
various kinds of composition since certain errors com- 
mon to one are impossible in another and the character of 
the composition often affects the corrections. There are 
three kinds in general use at the present time linotype, 
monotype, and hand. 


Since in linotype composition each line of type is one 
piece of metal cast integrally, the easiest way to identify 
it is by the character of its impression on proof or in the 
press. In the make-up of galley or page, the various 
slugs often do not stand firmly on the bottom. Hence 
one line often stands above the others and make a heavier 
impression; or one end of the line may be up and the 
other down, with a resulting variation of impression. In 
some cases also all the slugs may be slightly tilted so that 
the bottom or top of the type of each line is slightly 
heavier. This variation of impression by lines is a sure 
indication of the kind of set. If the work is done on a 
machine whose matrices are slightly worn, another identi- 
fication is by hair-lines between the letters resulting from 


the fact that the matrices have not fitted together closely 
and shreds of type metal have been forced between them. 
If the metal shreds rise high enough to touch the paper, 
they print very fine hair -lines that are hardly noticeable 
except tinder close scrutiny. Very imperfect alignment 
is often an identification of linotype composition. 


Monotype work is more difficult to identify because it 
is done on a machine that casts each letter separately, so 
that the result is practically the same as hand work. It 
can often be identified by the spaces or quads that work up 
between the words and leave rectangular black impres- 
sions on the paper. In hand work, the printer usually 
uses several small spaces between two words; on the 
monotype machine, whose line justification is automatic, 
the spaces are a single piece of metal. This serves as an 
identification as the single piece is more likely to work up 
and the black splotch between words is plainly the impres- 
sion of a single piece of metal. This, combined with the 
lack of errors common in hand-set and the varying line- 
impression of linotype work, makes identification possible. 

Hand-Set Type 

Hand composition is readily identified by the presence 
of wrong face letters and uneven justification in the same 
line, since these errors are practically impossible in ma- 
chine work. 

Errors Common to Various Sets 

In linotype composition, wrong face is rare, and re- 
versed letters are impossible, but imperfect letters and 


bad alignment are common, plus the common typograph- 
ical errors that are possible on the typewriter. In 
monotype composition, both wrong face and reversed 
letters are impossible, except after corrections have been 
made, but the proofreader must watch for "weak" type. 
If much of the type is imperfect or uneven in impres- 
sion, this is an indication that the type metal was too hot 
and the .type is honeycombed; if the proofreader allows 
it to go through, much of it may break down in the press. 
All errors are possible in hand composition and the proof- 
reader must be on the alert for wrong face and reversed 
type as well as the other errors noted. 


1. To obtain the best practice, the entire class should read 
proof on the same material a number of proofs of same matter. 

2. Good proofreading exercises may be purchased for class 
use see Biography, Appendix III. 

3. To develop a sharper proofreading eye, students may check 
and correct each other's work. 

4. It is well to use the methods of professional proofreaders, 
using a pen and all the marks. Connecting lines and other 
newspaper short-cuts should be barred. 

5. Read proof with a card, following line by line. 

6. Class may have oral drills to learn proof marks and their 

7. Practice identifying various kinds of composition in pub- 

8. Practice inserting or removing material so as to require 
as little resetting and re justifying as possible. 



AFTER all the stories for an edition have been written, 
edited, provided with suitable headlines and set in type, 
after all the advertising has been written and composed, 
after all the copy for the editorial columns and other 
special sections has been "set up," there still remains the 
task of putting together this mass of material into the 
form of columns and pages ready for the stereotyper and 
pressman. This task is called make-up. It involves such 
a combination of mechanics and editorial problems that 
it can hardly be said to belong either to the composing 
room or to the editorial office. In fact, the task is usually 
performed by a man from each 'department working to- 
gether over the same stone or table. The problems in- 
volved are so numerous and complicated that it is impos- 
sible to point out anything more than general tendencies 
and common practices. 

The importance of make-up, however, cannot be over- 
estimated. Although the reader is less conscious of it, 
probably, than of other characteristics of the newspaper, 
he is undoubtedly greatly influenced by the mere "looks" 
of the paper he reads. If clothes make the man, even 
more so does mere outward appearance make or unmake 
the newspaper. Magazine editors spend much time and 
money on the physical appearance of their publications 
and ponder a long time over the slightest change, but 



many newspaper editors do not give the matter a thought. 
Then the editor wonders why the painstaking work of 
his editorial room and the strength of his editorial policy 
do not increase his circulation. 

The main considerations in make-up are: (i) to dis- 
play the news with prominence proportionate to its 
importance; (2) to make it easy for the reader to find 
various contents; (3) to make pages attractive in ap- 
pearance; (4) to advertise news so as to impel the reader 
to buy the paper. Sometimes one of these aims is upper- 
most in the editor's mind; again he is concentrating on v 
another. In general, the fourth aim has been so 
emphasized recently that the first is neglected; the sales 
idea has led to "overplaying" of somewhat trivial, 
sensational news. 

Evolution of Make-up 

Average readers and some newspaper men think of the 
form and make-up of our daily news periodicals as a 
standard, cut-and-dried form that some one started years 
ago and every one since has accepted as the best. They 
forget that newspaper form arid make-up, as we know 
them, are the result of a long, laborious evolution, a con- 
stant trying out and adopting of new ideas. The evo- 
lution, furthermore, is not yet completed, for each year 
brings changes that will last for generations to come. 
And in this evolution, more progress can be credited to 
the composing room than to the news office. Every step 
in the development is more or less directly related to the 
improvement of mechanical processes. The size and 
number of pages have changed with the development of 
printing presses. The character of type has changed 


with the invention of typesetting machinery. Illustra- 
tions have come in with the photographic process of en- 
graving and have been violently affected by the general 
adoption of stereotyping. 


The tendency of recent years has been decidedly toward 
standardization of make-up. Pages, after growing from 
a pamphlet size to a spread that was dubbed a "blanket- 
sheet," have settled back into a convenient, pleasing size, 
so uniform that different papers vary but a few inches 
in height and width. Headlines have changed from the 
tiny label to a half-column of cross-lines, and back again 
to the short-deck form that gives greater display in less 
space. Column widths have shifted back and forth until 
the standard twelve and one-half or thirteen ems was 
reached. Standardized advertising practice and stand- 
ardized machinery have accomplished this. The number 
and position of departments have changed until almost 
every newspaper now carries almost the same sections 
in the same places. The front page has developed under 
the growth of street sales from an unimportant cover to 
most important page in the newspaper, and the back page 
is still doubtful area. Every element of the present-day 
newspaper is the result of a slow growth brought about 
by altered mechanical, business, and editorial possibilities, 
and until the student of newspaper making realizes this, 
he is not ready to discuss the problems of make-up. 
Nothing is right in the newspaper simply because it is 
so; precedents are constantly changing and new ideas in 
make-up are as significant as new ideas in reporting and 



Before we can study the problems of make-up, we must 
investigate the mechanical processes involved. Much of 
the problem is dependent upon mechanical possibilities 
and the conditions under which the task must be done. 

Who Makes Up the Paper 

Most newspapers are made up by an experienced printer 
under the personal guidance of a member of the editorial 
staff. The latter may be the managing editor, the as- 
sistant managing editor, or, if the newspaper is large, 
a special make-up man called the news editor. Depart- 
ment pages are made up by their editors. Part of the 
task is preliminary planning, because the act of making- 
up must be done quickly. Throughout the day, as the 
various articles are set in type, the news editor receives 
galley proofs and plans his make-up. He classifies the 
articles as regards importance, nature, and headlines, and 
notes the position requirements slugged into the stories 
by the city or managing editor. He may even make a 
diagram of the various pages to assist him in visualizing 
the finished paper. Just before press time he takes the 
bundle of proofs and his diagram to the composing room 
and begins the work of making-up. The material is 
heterogeneously laid out in galleys of type and his prob- 
lem is to direct the printer in sorting the mass and fitting 
it into the rectangular steel "chases" that bound the 
forms, so many columns wide and so many inches high. 

The Make-up Man's Problems 

The task is complicated by the fact that no two stories 
are of the same length and usually nothing fits into th$ 


space in which it is intended to go. Two stories, for ex- 
ample, whose similar heads call for a balanced position, 
may vary several inches in length; to place on a line the 
small headlines below them, the make-up man must 
quickly decide whether to throw away the last part of 
one story or to break it over into another column or 
page. Another article is just long enough to fill all of 
the column except an inch at the end ; the make-up man 
must find a filler for the space, "lead" out the story with 
strips of metal between the lines, or cut it down to leave 
room for a short story below it. The number of mechan- 
ical difficulties that arise is infinite. At the same time, 
while wrestling with the problem of making things fit, 
the make-up man must remember the display and posi- 
tion demanded by the various pieces of news, for his 
work will receive careful scrutiny as soon as the first 
copy is off the press and he may be called to the managing 
editor's office to explain why he buried such-and-such a 
story at the bottom of the fifth page, although its im- 
portance required a place at the top of the fourth page. 
The time element is even more serious. With plenty 
of time and thought, almost any one could solve the puz- 
zle of making up an edition, but the make-up man must 
work with one eye on the clock. His task is the last step 
in the editorial department's work, and it is a serious 
offense to delay the closing of the forms five minutes, 
since the time for the last mechanical steps of stereotyping 
and putting plates on press is figured in seconds. 

Dummy Diagram 

In most metropolitan offices, the making of a "dummy 
diagram" is a regular part of the office routine. The 




*> 2 







advertising department first submits a dummy of its pages, 
and the news editor then lays out the news make-up. Cer- 
tain offices use "the conference system" whereby the man- 
aging editor, editor-in-chief, assistant managing editor, 
and make-up editor listen to "the day's schedules" out- 
lined by the city and telegraph editors and plan the day's 
paper. It is a practice that may well be copied in smaller 
offices for it saves time and results in better make-up. 


Preparation for Final Make-up 

Every effort is made in the modern newspaper plant 
to reduce the amount of make-up that must be done 'dur- 
ing the last few minutes. As many pages as possible 
are made up and stereotyped long before press time. The 
editorial page, woman's page, society page, and in general 
most of the inside pages are made up hours in advance. 
The advertising is usually set up and placed in the forms 
long before press time. It is usually necessary to hold 
open two pages until the last minute, the front page and 
an inside page to accommodate break-overs crowded out 
of the front page by late news. Just before press time 
the inside page is made up and sent to the stereotypers. 
The front page is, however, left until the last second. 
The make-up man has it partly made up and knows what 
to do with the remainder of it, but he cannot lock the 
form until the editorial office sends down word that the 
last piece of news is in. Even after he has closed it up, 
the telegraph operator or a belated reporter may bring in 
a front page story that involves complete remaking. The 
last page to leave the composing room is the starter page. 

Successive Editions 

In large offices the process of making up is not done 
once, but many times, each day. The number of editions 
put out by the average newspaper may range from two to 
ten, seldom less than four, and each must be made up 
anew to accommodate later news and to suit the interest 
of varying circulation. The "all-day" newspaper is com- 
mon in the cities, whether it be called an "afternoon" or 
a "morning" paper. In some cities one may buy after 
the theater at night the first edition of the following day's 


paper. The average city morning newspaper closes its 
first mail edition for distant points between nine and ten 
o'clock of the evening before. Another mail edition goes 
to press just before midnight, and a third between one 
and two A. M. The city edition is not closed until almost 
four in the morning, and it may consist of two editions, 
one for distribution by carriers and the other for morn- 
ing street sale. The afternoon newspaper starts printing 
its first edition just before nine in the morning. Before 
eleven it is printing its noon edition. An early mail 
edition goes to press about noon, and the home edition 
for the carrier boys is on the press by three. After 
that it may issue a street edition to catch the reader going 
home from work, a late sporting edition, or a market 
edition containing closing quotations. Some newspapers 
issue ten editions a day, one each hour. 

Edition Make-up 

Each successive edition means a new task for the 
make-up man. The news pages must be remade to pre- 
sent later news. The mail editions must carry news of 
interest to readers outside the city, and the city editions 
must emphasize local events. The banner heads must 
be changed with each successive street edition, whether 
or not later news has come in. Usually certain pages, 
i.e., the editorial page, woman's page, advertising pages, 
and feature pages, remain the same throughout all the 
editions, but the remainder of the paper is changed 
throughout. As soon as the stereotypers have made a 
matrix of the front page, even before the plates are on 
the preiss, the make-up man has ripped open the form and 
begun the make-up of the next edition. An edition in- 


volving change only of the front page or an extra re- 
making between regular editions is a replate. 

Make-up Language 

Some of the expressions used in the printing office in- 
dicate the progress of the make-up man's work. When 
all the copy has been sent to the composing room by the 
editorial staff, the copy is all in hand, and when it is in 
type ready for make-up it is all set or all up. Each page 
form, consisting of a steel chase which forms the frame 
for the page of type, is made up on the stone, a table with 
a smooth stone or metal top. After the form is made up, 
it is planed down with a block of wood and a mallet to 
give it an even surface; any type or slugs that are not 
standing squarely on their bottoms are said to be off their 
feet. Before the form is locked up with wedge-shaped 
metal quoins, it is justified all space is taken up with 
leads between the lines. Unimportant short material used 
to fill holes in the make-up is called filler. The form is 
then said to be closed and is put away, or turned over to 
the stereotypers ; if any changes are required after it has 
been closed, it must be ripped open. In some offices, the 
paper is said to have been put to bed when the plates have 
been bolted on the press ready for printing. The last 
page to be made up before the deadline is the starter 
page because it starts the presses. A new edition making 
over only the front page is a replate. Boxes on either 
side of the top of the front page, beside the name-plate, 
are ears. The blank space left for stop-press news, such 
as sporting results, is the fudge box. Matter is squared 
up in adjoining columns under one wide headline. The 
line that cuts off the bottom of such squared up material, 


or of any story that is incomplete, is a cut-off rule. The 
fold is the important horizontal line dividing .the top and 
bottom of the page. 


The study of newspaper make-up in its broader sense 
involves more than the mere mechanical process of trans- 
ferring type from galleys to form and solving the puzzle 
of fitting stories into irregular spaces. It involves the 
entire study of the external, physical appearance of the 
finished newspaper the problems of printing design and 
appeal. Many of the problems involved have no definite 
solution; many are merely questions of taste; to most 
of them there are many answers. But the young man 
who is just entering the newspaper business and the old 
newspaper man who has spent his life over the copy 
desk, too busy to think of the printer's work, will find 
it to his advantage to investigate the answers given to 
these questions by other newspaper men and the prece- 
dents followed in other newspapers. In few of the 
following discussions will an attempt be made to point 
out the best practice ; the intent is merely to open up the 
various problems to the interested student. Further study 
must be carried on with the newspapers themselves. It is 
hoped that the discussion will arouse interest in the ques- 
tion of why one newspaper achieves a pleasing make-up 
and why another fails to be physically attractive. 

The Front Page 

thej#ot important page in 

the modern newspaper, it must be studied as a separate 


problem, although many of its questions apply with equal 
force to other pages. It is obvious .that the necessity of 
uniformity requires that the inside pages conform with 
the front page, but it is apparent that the front page has 
many individual problems. 

I. Body type is the first problem and must be studied 
with the relation to other type as well as to paper. The 
selection of body type involves both size and face, with 
reference to easy legibility and desired appearance. It is 
obvious that only type can be considered that is available 
on the linotype machine, since most newspapers use that 
machine or something like it. 

The average newspaper reader would probably declare 
that all newspapers use the same size of type in the body 
of their reading matter. Such is not the case. The com- 
mon practice among city newspapers is to set their read- 
ing matter in minion (/-point), with unimportant stories 
in nonpareil (6-point) and in some cases the editorials 
and important stories in brevier (8-point). Country and 
small city papers commonly use brevier throughout. Oc- 
casionally a country newspaper is found that uses bour- 
geoise (Q-point) or brevier on a 9-point body. The 
reason for this is that the city paper desires to crowd 
as much reading matter as possible into its pages. The 
country paper, on the other hand, cannot afford to set up 
so much material, and therefore uses a larger type. 

The face of the body type is even less obtrusive, but it 
has more to do with the appearance of the finished news- 
paper. It involves the question of tone and contrast 
Some newspapers desire great contrast and use a thin- 
faced body type with^a very*4k)ld headline type; the con- 
trast causes the headlines to stand out prominently on a 


background that is almost white at a distance. Other 
newspapers prefer to give their pages a uniformly gray 
tone without contrast, for they use moderately black body 
type with light-faced headline type. 

2. Display in body type is significant because of its 
effect on the finished newspaper. Some newspapers set 
all their reading matter solid without emphasizing any 
individual parts; others try constantly to make the im- 
portant leads and significant paragraphs stand out from 
the surrounding matter. The entire question is limited 
by the possibilities afforded by the linotype machine, since 
few newspapers will bother to set individual paragraphs 
by hand for the sake of display. In general only two 
kinds of display are possible on the linotype machines in 
use in most offices the use of larger, blacker type and 
the utilization of white space. The first involves setting 
all the reading matter in capitals, small capitals, or bold- 
face type ; all of these are possible without changing the 
machine's magazine, for the average linotype has black 
face instead of italics. The second involves "leading 
out," placing strips of metal between the lines, or in- 
denting every line so that the type body is separated from 
the column rules by white space. It is possible, of course, 
to set some reading matter in boxes (framed with a line 
on all four sides inside the column rules), or to use larger 
type or double measure (lines two columns long), but 
none of these things can be done without adjusting the 
machine and adding some handwork. 

3. Headline display must be considered by itself and 
in its relation to body type. If contrast is sought, a larger, 
blacker headline type is used and readability is an im- 
portant factor. In size, headline type has grown from 


,the ID-point and 12-point, formerly used, to 24-, 36-, 
and even 72-point in one-column heads; the average is 
probably 24- or 3<>point in major heads and something 
smaller in subordinate heads. In general a condensed 
or extra-condensed type is used, but the face is changing 
very much. Until recently some form of the Gothic was 
the commonest headline type, but now a more rounded 
letter, such as Caslon, Cheltenham, Bodoni, is becoming 
more popular. At the same time, the all-capital-letter top 
decks are in many cases being replaced by caps-and- 
lower-case. One of the most significant movements in 
newspapers in recent years has been the study of the 
readability of headline type. Many editors have come to 
feel that the typical headline schedule is too traditional 
and in general ineffective ; .they are breaking it radically. 
On the other hand, they realize that too much variety of 
type in headlines is faulty; hence a modern tendency is 
to use one type family throughout their headline schedule. 
The number of decks depends entirely upon the amount 
of display desired. If originality and variety are desired 
in the make-up, one of the easiest ways to achieve them 
is to depart from the standard two- and four-deck forms. 
The headline of more than four decks is rare because it 
takes too much space and is probably not read. The use 
of two varieties of major heads and two of subordinate 
heads greatly facilitates make-up. The matter of head- 
line display must be decided upon the basis of the news- 
paper's policy. If the newspaper desires to convey the 
impression of solid, reliable conservatism, it uses small, 
inconspicuous headlines; if it desires to appear bright, 
wide-awake, and enterprising, it uses larger headlines of 
constantly varying appearance. The most striking ten- 


dency of the day is the reduction in the number of decks ; 
there is an increasing number of newspapers that use 
nothing longer than two decks. 

Some modern tendencies may be expressed thus : 

1. Do not make headlines so extensive that you develop 

"headline readers" who do not read the stories. 

2. Many typographical experts declare that 18-, 24-, and 

3O-point type is large enough for any major drop- 

3. Too much display results in confusion and no display 

at all ; the emphasizing of one or two stories is the 
best way to advertise the news. 

4. All stories should have headlines; the use of 

BULLETIN, LATEST, etc., is useless. 

5. Don't set drop-lines of the same form side-by-side, 

"tombstone fashion" ; they destroy each other. 

6. Too much variety in headline type is displeasing. 

7. The two-deck top head saves space and time and ade* 

quately displays the news. 

8. Headlines should not be huddled together "above the 

fold," leaving the bottom of the page without in- 

Banner headlines have undergone a strange evolution. 
They were invented to assist in street sales. As afternoon 
newspapers depend more largely on street sales than do 
morning papers, afternoon papers adopted them rather 
generally and morning papers did not. The question was 
decided mainly on the basis of circulation is it mainly 
street sale or subscription? That was the status until the 
outbreak of the World War. Then, because of the 
bigness of the news, banners were adopted by many morn- 
ing newspapers, some of which had a decided reputation 


for conservative make-up. After the war these news- 
papers, instead of abandoning the banner headline, con- 
tinued to use it for other news. We then saw them arti- 
ficially featuring news for the mere purpose of creating 
a reason for .their banner heads. What the outcome will 
be, time alone will decide. It seems evident, however, 
that since the streamer's only value is to assist the news- 
boy, it will gradually be abandoned by those newspapers 
which do not depend largely on street sales. Whether or 
not the banner improves the appearance of the paper is a 
matter of taste. The chief fault of the banner headlines 
is that it often "overplays the news." About five days 
out of seven no news warrants the prominence; on these 
five days, "to dress up the page/' a story is overwritten 
and overplayed. Since the story most suitable for this 
purpose is usually of the sensational type, the banner 
emphasizes crime and violent death far above its real 
importance. Some offices purposely "play" the story with 
"sales value" regardless of its relative worth. The ulti- 
mate result is that it is forcing all newspapers into "street 
sale competition," and training readers to buy on the 
street the paper with the loudest scream rather than to 
subscribe regularly for the worth-while paper. 

Spreads and layouts have undergone the same evo- 
lution as banner heads. They have been borrowed from 
the evening papers, which used them for advertising pur- 
poses, by the morning newspapers which have little use 
for them. Many a newspaper that boasted of never using 
a spread more than once a year now is using them every 
day. It may be pointed out, further, that the spread has 
served a valuable purpose in emphasizing the occasional 
"big" story that the office must handle. 


The use of subheads is another questionable point. 
They undoubtedly make the newspaper more readable, 
but they also break up its continuity. Many a system of 
headlines and body type carefully worked out to give the 
sheet a uniform, pleasing tone has been wrecked by the 
use of too prominent subheads. Much care must be 
taken in selecting them. If the editor desires great con- 
trast on his page, he should of course use conspicuous 
subheads to accord with the conspicuous headlines ; black- 
face type in capitals and lower case will accomplish this. 
If he desires a uniform tone, his subheads should be set 
back into the paper; light-face capital or small capital sub- 
heads will break up his stories without resulting in great 
contrast. The frequency of the subheads should be de- 
cided on the same basis. In wording and content, the sub- 
head must necessarily accord with the tone of the news- 
paper. The "snappy," colloquial subhead is decidedly 
out of place in the thoughtful journal, and the empty, 
label subhead is as much at variance with the lively sheet. 
All the various elements of the newspaper must accord 
with its policy. 

4. Number of Stories. Although many readers are 
not aware of it, newspapers vary greatly in the number 
and length of the stories carried in a single edition es- 
pecially on the front page. Many editors are convinced 
that their readers prefer to read a little about many dif- 
ferent subjects; other editors are equally sure that their 
readers prefer to know all about a few subjects. It would 
appear that the first idea would be more in accord with 
the policy of the light, popular newspaper, and yet there 
are papers of this class that follow the definite policy of 
printing a few long stories. Certain it is that no news- 


paper has room enough to print all the news and some 
selection must be made. If many short stories are used, 
the page contains more headlines and has greater variety; 
it gives the reader the impression that he is getting a great 
amount of news for his money. It is impossible, on the 
other hand, to treat any given story in an adequate, ex- 
haustive way; the reader may get the idea that many 
things have been hinted at, but few have been fully cov- 
ered. The result is that the many-story paper appears less 
thoughtful. It also contains less reading matter because 
much of the space is devoted to headlines. From the 
make-up man's point of view, it is much simpler to put 
together a page of many stories since their relative 
importance is not so marked and more elasticity is af- 
forded. The policy must be determined definitely; mid- 
dle ground in the matter is difficult to maintain, since 
variation of length has so much to do with relative em- 
phasis that it can hardly be trusted to a changing news 
staff. The character of the news thus handled has little 
effect on the length of the stories; uniformly long stories 
may be as guilty of sensationalism as uniformly short 
stories and vice versa. 

5. The Breaking of Stories from the Front Page to a 
Later Page. There are newspapers that make a practice 
of completing front-page stories on that page. There 
are others that uniformly begin many stories on the front 
page and break them to inside pages. The latter practice 
gives the varied effect obtained by the use of many short 
stories, without sacrificing collusiveness in the handling 
of the news. There are certain things to be said for each 
practice. Much breaking over gives much variety and 
interest to the front page; it crowds more subjects into 


that limited space; it gives the newspaper the appearance 
of carrying more news than it does; it leads the reader 
into the advertising pages. Break-overs, however, seri- 
ously complicate the task of make-up ; any change of the 
front page requires change on an inside page and the 
making up of succeeding editions involves the remaking 
of more forms. Many readers, also, find frequent break- 
overs very annoying. It is certain that a story should 
not break on a paragraph, and that the breaking-over of 
just a few lines is decidedly bad. 

When all, or nearly all, of the front-page stories are 
completed on that page without breaking over, the ques- 
tion arises of breaking long stories from column to 
column. If a story begins in column 2 and is too long 
to be completed in that column, where shall the rest of 
it be placed? A few papers prefer to place it at the top 
of the next column, thus carrying the reading matter con- 
tinuously from column to column. Others place it at the 
bottom of the next column, separated by a cut-off rule. 
The second practice reserves the top of each column for 
headlines, but it often involves some difficulty for the 
reader in finding the rest of the story. The former prac- 
tice is best suited for the reader who peruses his news- 
paper from beginning to end like a book; the second is 
best for the reader who scans and reads at random.' 

6. Illustrations. In former days when wood-cuts were 
the only illustrations possible, the only question was one 
of cost. But since the development of the photographic 
process of engraving and the growth of syndicate cut 
services, illustrations have been brought within the reach 
of every newspaper. The question with the individual 
newspaper is what kind of illustrations, how large and 


how many; and in what position. On the front page illus- 
trations of the right kind doubtless aid in the sale of 
papers. Som newspapers follow the practice of printing 
one cartoon on the front page each day; others use the 
space for a single half-tone illustration of some phase 
of the news; still others use a number of smaller cuts, 
usually portraits, scattered about the page. When the 
paper can obtain the services of a good cartoonist, the 
cartoon is probably the best front-page illustration. But 
it is much cheaper to hire a photographer or buy photo- 
graphs from a syndicate; the cost of the engraving is 
about the same in either case. When no cartoonist is 
available, the question can usually be reduced to a choice 
of one large cut or several small ones. The large cut 
has the advantage in that it can present a more interesting 
picture than a one-column portrait; on the other hand, 
it seems to demand a position at the top of the page 
and occupies the space valuable for featuring important 
news. The small cuts break up the page, but they can 
be placed anywhere and occupy relatively unimportant 
space. Thd chief difficulty is the position. Unless sym- 
metrically arranged small cuts break up symmetry in 
typography. If symmetrically arranged, the cuts give 
the page a stiff, formal appearance. A large cut or lay- 
out of small cuts is most difficult to place. In a seven- 
column paper, the cut must be three, five, or seven col- 
umns wide to center in the page; in an eight-column 
paper it must be two or four columns wide to center. 
Two-column cuts are too narrow and four are too wide. 
If the cut occupies the center of the top of the page, 
it is cut in half when folded on the news-stand and loses 
its effectiveness. If placed on the right side so as to be 


on top of the news-stand, it occupies the most valuable 
space in the newspaper, besides giving an ungainly look- 
ing page when the paper is opened. If placed on the left 
or at the bottom it does not show on the news-stand and 
therefore loses its value as an attraction for buyers. 
Some editors can see little advantage in front-page cuts 
since, unless the stereotyping and press work are excel- 
lent, half-tone cuts do not print clearly. The entire prob- 
lem of front-page illustration is a knotty one and is prob- 
ably usually solved by the answer of the question, Is the 
cut worth the valuable space it fills ? 

7. Position of Prominence. This is not a problem but 
a fact. On the front page the two outside columns are 
the most prominent because they are set off by the mar- 
gins at the side. The top of the last column to the right 
is the better for two reasons : ( i ) it is on top as the paper 
lies flat on the news-stands; (2) its story can be con- 
tinued in the first column of the second page. The top 
of the last column to the left is next in prominence be- 
cause, as the paper is opened, it is the logical beginning 
of the newspaper. The other columns are almost equal 
in importance, although those nearer the right are in sight 
on the news-stand. When a large cut occupies the top 
of the page, the columns beginning under the cut are em- 
phasized. In judging the importance of various columns, 
some editors consider the appearance of the newspaper 
on the news-stand; others think of it as opened in the 
reader's hands. Many editors solve the problem by de- 
voting certain columns to certain news, i.e., the last on 
right to local news, the last on the left to national news. 

8. Symmetry. Balanced and symmetrical arrange- 
ment of headlines and other front-page display is a prob- 


lem that almost every newspaper has wrestled with. 
Newspapers in America have ranged themselves into sev- 
eral groups in seeking a solution, and their pages may 
be roughly classified thus : ( i ) The balanced, symmetrical 
page; (2) the dissymmetrical "focused" page; (3) the 
helter-skelter, "circus" make-up, seeking only novelty; 
(4) the page of contrast and balance. Some make an ef- 
fort to attain symmetry ; others frankly avoid symmetry 
and seek a changing front page. There are a few news- 
papers that maintain strict symmetry at the top of the 
front page, but make no effort to balance the headlines in 
the lower half. 

While the newspapers that avoid symmetry can hardly 
be discussed in connection with the question of attaining 
a balanced front page, it is worth while to notice what 
they seek to do. The dissymmetrical "focused" front 
pages, instead of spreading out the news in an orderly 
way so as to give equal emphasis to several stories, at- 
tempt to drive the reader's attention to one spot and to 
center all interest in one story. They do this, not by 
disorderly, hit-or-miss arrangement of headlines, but by 
a carefully worked out scheme of concentrated display. 
The third class the helter-skelter "circus" page frank- 
ly has no scheme of arrangement at all. It simply seeks 
novelty and variety by scattering headlines in a kaleido- 
scopically changing mass each day. The fourth group 
usually seeks balance, but constantly varies the method 
of attaining it. Instead of using the same form of head- 
lines each day, as does the first group, this class uses 
one-column headlines one day, two-column the next, boxes 
or pictures the next but always on a careful plan. 

Symmetrical front page make-up aims to display alter- 


nate columns and at the same time to emphasize the two 
outside columns. It is easy to obtain with seven columns 
or in any page which has an odd number of columns. 
In the seven-column front page, symmetrical arrange- 
ment of the top of the page is usually attained by plac- 
ing display headlines in the first, third, fifth, and seventh 
columns, and by using less prominent headlines in the 
second, fourth and sixth. This method emphasizes four 
stories and gives excellent balance. In some cases, the 
headlines in the third and fifth columns, while standing 
out above the smaller heads, are less prominent than the 
first and seventh headlines. This gives symmetry while 
emphasizing two stories. The same balance is accom- 
plished in many seven-column pages by the use of two- 
column spreads in the first and second, and sixth and 
seventh columns, with a displayed headline in the fourth 
column. When a cut is used in the seven-column page, 
it is usually one column wide and in the fourth column, 
or three columns wide in the center of the page. In the 
latter case, the two long heads can be balanced below it. 
The arrangement of the lower half of the page is usually 
determined by the fact that the stories under the promi- 
nent heads are the longest. The first and seventh stories 
frequently extend to the bottom of the column ; the third 
and fifth extend almost to the bottom ; the second, fourth 
and sixth are shorter. This brings small heads high up 
on the even-numbered columns and low down in the third 
and fifth columns. 

Symmetry is more difficult to attain in eight columns 
or in any page of an even number of columns because 
two columns must be grouped together as displayed or un~ 
displayed. Some newspapers solve it by breaking up the 


space with a cartoon or illustration, and almost invariably 
they place the cut at one side because the best front-page 
cut, the three-column cut, cannot be centered in eight 
columns. It matters not whether the cut is placed to the 
right or the left of the center, but different effects are 
attained through the choice of columns. If the cut oc- 
cupies, for example, the fifth, sixth, and seventh columns, 
the most prominent headlines occupy the first, third, and 
eighth columns. 

Styles of front page make-up are invented by the 
metropolitan press and copied by smaller newspapers, 
often without regard to their suitability to the paper's 
field. It would seem plain that the "circus" and the 
"focused" page, with the daily banner head, have little 
place in a conservative small city daily or country weekly. 
It is to be hoped that the community press may evolve 
a make-up of its own, disregarding the methods of sen- 
sation, of street sale competition, and other factors of 
large city journalism. 

Make-up Problems of the Paper as a Whole 

Many of the questions discussed above apply equally 
well to the entire newspaper; uniformity requires that the 
front page set the precedent for all succeeding pages in 
the matters of type, display, and general form. There are 
other problems, however, that are of equal importance in 
the physical appearance of the newspaper. 

I. Number of Columns per Page. Until recently most 
newspapers have been printed in seven thirteen-ern 
columns per page. Within the past few years, however, 
it has been found that a great saving of paper can be 
effected by the adoption of eight columns per page, with- 


out materially enlarging the sheet. The increased cost 
of white paper has been largely the reason. The addi- 
tion of an eighth column on each page of an eight-page 
newspaper gives an additional 160 inches of advertising 
space or over 10,000 words of reading matter without 
increasing the paper cost. The space for the extra column 
is ordinarily gained by reducing the width of the margins 
and by narrowing the columns from 13 to 12^2 ems 
that is, from 2 1/6 to 2 1/12 inches. The narrowing 
of the columns is not noticeable to the reader and or- 
dinarily no corresponding reduction in advertising rates 
is made. The extra 20 inches of space per page is there- 
fore clear gain, so far as paper cost is concerned. Some 
newspapers, however, have been slow in making the 
change because it necessitates a rebuilding of their 

2. Number of Pages and Sections. On small news- 
papers which employ flat bed presses, the number of 
pages is definitely set by the capacity of the press; all 
additional pages over the standard edition must be 
handled as insets or extra sections. This problem is 
therefore determined for them mechanically. To the 
newspaper which has a rotary press, the number of pages 
is usually determined on the basis of the amount of ad- 
vertising carried. Before the war, the common propor- 
tion was from forty to forty-five per cent advertising, 
with fifty-five or sixty per cent reading matter. 
Increased printing costs have reversed the proportion; 
the average newspaper now devotes from fifty-five to 
eighty per cent of its space to advertising. In a seven- 
column, eight-page paper, containing in all fifty-six col- 
umns, the amount of advertising space totals some thirty 


to forty columns. If the advertising department sells 
more than about thirty-five columns of display for any 
one issue, the number of pages and amount of reading 
matter must be increased accordingly. Ordinarily the 
pages are increased in multiples of four, since two-page 
insets are awkward. When the number of pages is in- 
creased four or eight pages, the editor must then decide 
whether to print the additional pages as a second section 
or fold them in with the main body of the paper. In 
some offices this matter is settled by the capacity of the 
press. When the pape'r has more than one press of large 
capacity, either plan is feasible, but the use of a second 
section doubles the speed with which the newspaper may 
be printed. On the large rotary presses, the increase in 
the number of pages decreases the output per minute 
accordingly; if half the pages can be printed as another 
section on a second press, the entire paper may be printed 
as quickly as one section. 

In relative rank, the pages usually are : ( i ) Page one ; 
(2) page three, because the eye strikes it after turning 
inside; (3) page 2, because it is the "turn page"; (4) 
the back page. If there is a second section, its first and 
last pages rank high. Right-hand, or odd pages, are 
more important than left-hand. That is why many news- 
papers jump stories to left-hand pages, reserving odd 
pages for new stories. Different offices have various 
ideas on this matter, as well as on the ranking of columns 
on inside pages. 

3. Position of Advertising. This is a matter that is 
difficult to settle because the advertiser has his own ideas 
about the position of the space he buys and few news- 
papers can disregard his wishes. With due regard for 


his influence, certain phases of the question may be noted. 
Since the front page has become something more valu- 
able than a wrapper, most large papers are agreed that 
none of its space should be sold to the advertiser. The 
large papers that carry advertising on the front page are 
rare. But on the inside pages practices differ. Some 
papers crowd their advertisements together so that their 
reading pages are kept fairly free of advertising. Others 
prefer to yield to the advertiser's wish to be near reading 
matter. In the latter case they sell two or more columns 
of each inside page. In the selection of the columns to 
sell practices differ. Some papers confine their adver- 
tisements to the last two columns to the right, reserving 
the more prominent left-hand side of the page for read- 
ing matter ; others sell the outside columns on either side, 
saving the space in the center; others crowd all adver- 
tisements into the bottom of the page; still others seem 
to leave the matter to the printer who makes up the 
advertisements. The most popular arrangement is the 
"pyramid page" which is made up with the widest ad- 
vertisement at the bottom and successively narrower ads 
above it, each resting against the right-hand margin. 
The result is an upright pyramid of ads on the bottom 
and right of the page and an inverted pyramid of reading 
matter at the top and left. Whatever the policy, how- 
ever, the laying out of the advertisements should be super- 
vised by the editorial department so that an otherwise 
attractive make-up may not be marred by a careless and 
heterogeneous placing of ads. 

4. Advertising Display. There has been some ten- 
dency toward limiting the amount of display in adver? 
tisements. The movement was started by James Gordon 


Bennett, Sr., when he refused to allow cuts or display 
type in the advertisements of the New York Herald. 
Some newspapers tell their advertisers in advance what 
type and cuts may or may not be used, or fix a cash 
penalty for undue display. They realize that all attempts 
to increase the attractiveness and tone of their pages 
may be thwarted by one overdisplayed advertisement. 
Some newspapers refuse to use any black-face type larger 
than a certain specified size, requiring that larger type 
must be of the outline or shaded variety, which gives 
display without blackness. In the same way some refuse 
to use cuts of more than a certain blackness and forbid 
the use of broad, black rules or other borders. They 
thus require that their advertisements conform to the 
same scheme of tone and contrast that they have selected 
for their news columns. The matter of daily or frequent 
change of advertising copy is a problem rather beyond 
our discussion, but many editors are thinking about it 
in their attempt to make their advertisements as much 
a part of the reading matter of their pages as their news 

5. Departmentizing. The basis of departments has 
changed in our newspapers : ( i ) It was formerly a matter 
of grouping news of various kinds; (2) it is now a mat- 
ter of classifying readers and developing special depart- 
ments for various groups e.g., sports, society, books. 
The newspaper of former days was almost completely 
divided into departments and special columns. Every 
item was classified and placed in the proper section. The 
news department scheme is still followed to a large extent 
in the more conservative of American newspapers. The 
objection to it, however, is that strict classification of the 


newspaper's news thwarts the proper displaying of the 
important stories. Hence we find that the average news- 
paper is growing away from the news department idea 
and the more radical editor is abandoning it altogether. 
When we find that the news department scheme is main- 
tained, we find it modified by the practice of taking out 
of the department the important items and leaving under 
the department head only the routine news. That is, the 
big sporting story, the society item of general interest, 
the unusual market story, the very important obituary, 
is found on the front page rather than in its proper classi- 
fication. Certain departments still maintained in most 
newspapers are sports, society items, personals (in small 
papers), markets, obituaries, reviews and criticisms, 
editorials, etc. But the attempt to classify general news 
as local, state, national, foreign, shipping, railroad, police, 
courts, real estate, etc., has been largely abandoned, except 
in the case of the smallest items. The reasons for and 
against the news department idea depend, as do many 
other things in a newspaper, upon the clientele to which 
the editor caters. Undoubtedly the thoughtful, system- 
atic reader, who either reads the entire paper or at least 
makes a point to read all news of certain kinds, likes to 
find items arranged in classified sections so that he can 
discover them all with little difficulty. The haphazard, 
chance reader, who scans at random seeking only the 
strikingly interesting or important news the average 
American reader is not willing to spend the time to 
read through the various departments in search of news. 
He likes to have the day's "specials'' displayed at the top 
of the menu, for he wishes a few titbits rather than a 
complete, well-rounded meal. The editor decides the 


department problem on the basis of his circulation and is 
most likely to be thinking of kinds of readers, rather than 
of kinds of news, when he plans a department. 

6. The Editorials. The old-time American newspaper 
featured its editorials and gave them at least a page. 
Now, however, editorials have generally lost much of 
their prestige and in many newspapers are being main- 
tained largely as an empty custom. Hence as the edi- 
torial section has shrunk gradually into a column or two, 
the page has become a problem of make-up. Since it is 
customary to place the publisher's announcement at the 
head of the editorial page, that fact, more .than the im- 
portance of the editorials themselves, determines its 
place. The average newspaper uses a left-hand page 
near the center of the issue for its editorials, but since 
the page seldom contains more than two or three columns 
of editorials, the editor wonders what to do with the rest. 
Even if the editorials are set in larger type and wider 
columns, there is still half a page to fill. It is obviously 
no place for news, and we find a variety of practices 
exemplified. Some newspapers fill the remaining columns 
with editorials reprinted from other papers; some fill 
them with book and theatrical reviews; some develop a 
humor column and other features ; some fill a large part 
of the space with a striking cartoon. The conservative 
newspaper finds these related subjects of value, but the 
more "popular" editor doubts their importance. Often 
the page deteriorates into a dead-wood section which is 
devoted to space fillers. The development of features 
that make it as interesting as the rest of the paper is an 
indication of enterprise. Certain newspapers, however, 
have demonstrated that careful make-up and some con- 


sideration of content will make their editorial pages very 
valuable features. 

The status and position of the editorial page suffered 
a marked change when the sensational newspapers hit 
upon the idea of using the editorials as circulation-build- 
ers, moving the editorials to the back page. Their idea 
has been taken up by many less sensational newspapers, 
and now one of the most conservative journals in the 
country uses the back page regularly as an editorial sec- 
tion. The change in position has also brought a change 
in make-up. The back-page editorial is usually set in 
larger type and double-measure and the entire page is put 
together with great care. Symmetry is obtained by using 
the four outside! columns for double-measure editorials 
and filling the central portion with cartoons, anecdotes 
or other features. This use of the back page is valuable 
to the newspaper which desires to make a feature of its 
opinions and comments. 

7. Other Special Sections. Some of the modern de- 
partments that involve questions of make-up are the 
sporting page, the society section, markets, woman's sec- 
tion, obituaries. 

The sporting department is maintained as a separate 
page or section in almost all American newspapers. It 
is in charge of a special editor and is given a fixed posi- 
tion. Some newspapers feature it by giving it the first 
page of the second section or by devoting to it a special 
four-page section on pink or green paper. The principal 
questions involved in its make-up are": to what extent 
shall important sporting items be lifted out of it, and 
to what extent shall other news be injected into it ? Some 
newspapers make a practice of extracting important 


stories from it to be played up on the front page. Again 
when sports are dull, they use other news to fill up the 
sporting page. From an ethical point of view, other con- 
siderations are: relative amounts of local and outside 
sports; amateur sports encouraging physical exercise 
versus professional touting; relative amounts of home- 
made and syndicate or association material; presence of 
material that encourages betting or gambling; excessive 
publicity for professionals; material for women readers; 
and quality of English. 

The society section usually varies in importance in 
inverse proportion with the size of the city in which 
the newspaper is published. Society news is of great 
importance in small cities and of less importance in large 
cities, although with the attempt to cater to womdn read- 
ers, society news has achieved a greater development in 
certain large cities. The make-up problem raised is 
whether society news should be maintained as a separate 
section of standard size and position, or whether it should 
be used as a convenient filler to utilize odd space. In 
newspapers that feature society news, the section is usu- 
ally maintained in the same position each day under a 
prominent department heading. Certain journals even 
place the name of the society editor above it. Some de- 
velop one story each day into a "leader" and announce 
its content in a "blanket head" across the top of the page. 
The independence of the section is often accentuated by 
a different kind of typography. When the society editor 
prefers to devote the section to a few longer items, a 
distinguishing style of subhead is often selected for each 
item. When shorter items are used, they are often sepa- 
rated by asterisks, by classifying subheads, or even by 


the use of hanging indention in the set-up. Undoubtedly 
any variety of make-up that will make the section more 
attractive is of value. Society illustrations have been 
adopted by many newspapers, and when the newspaper 
cannot afford daily cuts of local social celebrities, it illus- 
trates this page with syndicate pictures of national society 
lights. The society editor is usually allowed to break 
away from the newspaper's style sheet in the use of titles 
and tabooed expressions. Few social sections are so in- 
dependent, however, that the managing editor hesitates 
to remove an important wedding notice or other signifi- 
cant social item to the front page. 

The woman's section is a newcomer in the American 
newspaper because it is only recently that an attempt has 
been made to cater to the women readers. Its contents 
and make-up are, therefore, not to any great degree stand- 
ardized. Each newspaper has its own ideas about the 
appeal to be made or is casting about blindly, keeping 
sharp watch for any indication of a successful strike. 
Certain newspapers have concluded that society news is 
women's news arid have placed the two departments near 
together or have combined them. Almost every woman's 
section contains material on dress, fashion, and cooking. 
"Household Hints" is a common heading. After careful 
study of box-office business, some editors have placed 
theatrical news and criticism on the woman's page. Other 
journals, working on the basis that many women desire 
more thoughtful reading, have gone in for serious articles 
on woman's activities. Whether to make the section 
light or thoughtful is still a question. It is certain in 
most editors' minds, however, that the page must be typo- 
graphically artistic and different from the rest of the 


paper; the use of illustrations, especially portraits and 
fashion cuts, is common with most of them. 

The market section is a standard feature in many 
newspapers. In some cases it is merely a column, con- 
taining a general story on market conditions and closing 
quotations. Other newspapers, considering that this is 
primarily the business man's page, make a feature of it 
and employ a special editor to take charge of it. In such 
a case it is ordinarily subdivided into departments, but 
its articles carry the newspaper's standard headlines. The, 
sizes of type and form of tables are often specified in the 
style sheet. 

Obituaries are mentioned here because many news- 
papers devote a special section to them and make a point 
of including biographical sketches with each day's deaths. 
Typography is the only make-up question involved. The 
attempt is usually to condense the section into the smallest 
possible space, and type is chosen with this idea in mind. 
In some newspapers, the obituaries are printed entirely 
in smaller type; in others the first paragraph is in or- 
dinary type and the sketch is in finer type. In some cases, 
the succeeding obituaries are separated by black-face sub- 
heads indicating the deceased's full name ; in others a rule 
separates the items and the obituary is distinguished by 
the surname in light- faced capital letters run in the first 
line as a side-head. 

The "Radio," automobile, and other special pages that 
come and go involve few make-up problems not common 
to the rest of the newspaper. 

8. The Back Page. Until recently the back page was 
considered a wrapper and of small importance. Most 
newspapers sold as much as possible of it to advertisers 


and filled the remainder with unimportant material. Its 
real importance was pointed out by the so-called sensa- 
tional newspapers that turned it into an editorial page. 
Other editors have devised other uses for it. One of the 
earliest was the back-page comic section. In 1914 a 
Chicago newspaper turned the back page into a second 
front page devoted to local news. The basic idea was 
not entirely new, for many small city papers had printed 
some local news on the back page, interspersed with ad- 
vertisements. But to eliminate all advertisements from 
its columns, to repeat the journal's name at the top, and 
to give it as much attention as the front page, was a 
new step. Later came the idea of a full page of pictures 
on the last page. And so on. The importance of the 
back page will probably lead to further experiments. 

9. Length and Number of Stories. As suggested in 
the discussion of the front page, newspapers show a great 
diversity of opinion in deciding whether to print a large 
number of short stories or a relatively small number of 
long articles. The reasons for and against, as dis- 
cussed above, apply throughout the paper, although it 
may be added that the adoption of a definite policy greatly 
facilitates the work of the make-up man. The consid- 
eration is one of editing. Front-page stories, handled as 
they are with greater care, are ordinarily likely to be 
worth the space they occupy. Stories on the inside pages 
are in many cases long simply because they are loosely 
written and strung out beyond the length warranted by 
the facts. Many can be found in almost any newspaper 
that would be greatly improved by a thorough boiling. 

10. Fillers. To what extent should the make-up man 
be allowed to use "fillers," two- or three-line items, to 


plug up the holes in his make-up? In the most carefully 
edited newspaper, fillers are never used, and the make-up 
must come out even without them. In smaller offices, 
the practice is sanctioned to the extent of providing the 
make-up man with a galley of ready-made fillers. Jokes, 
anecdotes, axioms, epigrams, statistics, condensed state- 
ments of fact, advertising readers, and anything that can 
be crowded into two or three lines is used. Some editors 
use personal items as fillers or even slugs reading "Sub- 
scribe for the Leader/' "Watch Our Want Ads." The 
use of fillers is of great assistance in make-up, but much 
objection is offered on the score that frequent fillers give 
the page a patchy appearance. Certain it is that they 
must be chosen with care when they are used, so that the 
reader may not be annoyed by inadvertently plunging into 
a silly joke at the bottom of a serious discussion. The 
practice of using fillers, while not always bad, can easily 
be overworked. 

ii. Syndicate Material. With the development of 
syndicated reading matter and illustrations in plate and 
matrix form, the newspaper editor has to give much 
thought to deciding how much of it to use. Certain it is 
that by patronizing syndicates he can supply more inter- 
esting material to his readers than he can have written 
in his own office. He can give his readers a broader 
outlook on the news of the world in words and pictures 
than his staff can provide, and in general his syndicate 
material is written in better style than his staff articles. 
On the other hand, many of his readers who take two 
newspapers, may find the same material in both. Every 
inch of syndicate material, furthermore, crowds out an 
inch of local material, and to all newspapers local news 


brings popularity and circulation. Many an editor spends 
so much money and space on syndicate material that he 
prints little eilse part of the money put into a better 
local staff would improve his business. Since neither a 
complete exclusion nor an excessive use of syndicate 
material is advisable, it would seem wise to establish a 
definite office rule specifying what proportion of the news 
columns shall be devoted to each kind of material. 

12. Illustrations. The question of illustrating the in- 
side pages is as important as that of pictorial art on the 
front page. Syndicate pictures in matrix form can be 
purchased more cheaply than cuts can be made, but un- 
doubtedly they do not have the news value of the local 
picture. An indistinct, bleary half-tone showing the 
"Ruins After the Broad Street Fire/' snapped by the 
staff photographer, is certainly worth half a dozen excel- 
lent cuts of "Vesuvius in Eruption" or "The Miraflores 
Locks." A smudgy half-tone of "James Jones, Rock 
Valley Pioneer," draws many more readers than an ex- 
cellent portrait of "The Duke of Fido in Hunting Attire/ 1 
But not every editor has a staff photographer, a near-by 
engraver, and a purse to illustrate his local news. There 
is also the possibility of the ever-interesting diagrams, 
maps, and sketches, to illustrate the news, if some one can 
be found to draw them. 

In the selection of photographs for newspaper use cer- 
tain axioms may be followed : 

I. Picture should tell its own story; the reason why it 
is printed, its news value or interest, should be 
clear at a glance. Thus a mechanical device should 
be shown in use. The caption merely enlarges on 
the picture's message. 


2. Picture should be pruned down, silhouetted, or other- 

wise reduced to its essentials its story. Confus- 
ing background should be cut out. 

3. Picture should contain human interest a person to 

add interest and show size of other objects. The 
"pretty girl" appeal, however, is overused. 

4. Photograph must contain contrast for the photo- 

engraving process will "flatten out" the picture. 

5. Classify pictures as "news pictures," which must be 

run at once, and "feature pictures" whose interest 
will last for a time. 

6. Pictures should not be revolting or disgusting. 

7. "Natural poses" are better than stiff portraits. 

Some technical considerations are : 

I. For half-tone cuts, best copy is unmounted glossy 
photograph, 4x5 or larger. Specifications needed 
are: I. Width of cut in inches; II. Fineness of 
screen (50 to 85 lines for stereotyping; 85 to 100 
for unstereotyped newspapers; 120 or finer for 
books and magazines) ; III. Edge finish (square, 
oval, outline, vignette) ; IV. Hand work (retouch- 
ing, routing out, tooling) ; V. Name and address of 
sender ; VI. Time at which cut is desired. 

2. For line engravings, best copy is black ink or charcoal 

on heavy white paper. Specifications: I. Width 
of cut ; II. Area and number of Ben Day shading, 
if any; III. Hand work, if any; IV. Name and 
address ; V. Delivery time. 

3. Write specifications, captions, etc., on sheet of paper 

and paste it lightly to back of photo. Never type- 
write on back of photo. 

13. Comics. The great rage at present is to print a 
large number of so-called "comics," either in regular 


series of comic strips, or as illustrations to chance jokes. 
They may be bought from the syndicates at a price that 
makes their use very desirable. A few editors scorn their 
use. Others look upon them as a necessary evil like the 
Sunday comic supplement, detesting them while realizing 
that they sell papers. It is certain that when a paper 
runs a series of good comics, many readers will turn to 
them before reading the front page; it is also certain that 
the comic back pages of many city newspapers are read 
in advance of the news. But on the other hand, while 
granting this, editors dislike to base the popularity and 
sale of their newspaper on such trivial features. 

14. Ease of Reading. This has become so important 
that "Easy to Read" has already appeared as a newspaper 
motto. All but the most conservative of American jour- 
nals have accepted the idea that their pages must be easy 
to read. In making the decision they acknowledge that 
they are catering to the casual reader rather than to the 
thoughtful reader. They are admitting that the man who 
will wade through an unattractive newspaper is fast be- 
coming unknown. Some of them are forgetting this rare 
creature entirely and catering entirely to the casual reader ; 
others are trying to reach both. When the latter ideal 
prevails, it is not a matter of news, but a matter of type 
and display, a matter of putting the words in the most 
legible, attractive form. The problem includes many of 
the questions discussed above. But once the matter 
of typography is settled, it is as much the problem of re- 
porters and copyreaders as of make-up man. No print- 
ter's skill will make news easy to read unless it is written 
and edited with that idea in mind. This involves the use 
of short paragraphs, the frequent use of quotation marks, 


graphical figures, meaty statements, sentence emphasis, 
and the knack of developing ideas in headlines. If a 
newspaper is to be easy to read, every one in the office 
must cooperate. 

15. What News to Emphasise. Many an editor leaves 
this important question to the hireling who makes up 
except in the case of certain front-page stories. He for- 
gets that it may be a matter of policy so important that 
newspapers have won or failed by it. Too few are the 
offices that have a definite aim, that have analyzed their 
circulation, as the magazine editor analyzes his, and made 
a conscious effort to supply and display the kind of mate- 
rial desired by that circulation. Too often it is a matter 
of what comes into the office or is easiest to obtain. One 
phase of the problem involves the relative value of local 
and telegraph news. Successful city dailies have made 
a definite study of this question and follow a definite 
scheme in the handling and placing of city, state, na- 
tional and foreign news. Few smaller newspapers have. 
Hence we find many small city dailies, while fighting a 
life-and-death battle with city competition, devoting their 
front pages to condensed telegraph news and neglecting 
or burying local events. Little thought is required to 
show that they cannot win, for their meager outside news 
is overshadowed by the columns of their city rivals. But, 
of course, the telegraph news is cheaper to get than local 
news. The matter must be decided on the basis of circu- 
lation and competition. In a town near a great city, 
where the city dailies early in the morning supply citizens 
with outside news, the only field left open to the small 
town daily is local news. In a town far away from a 
city, however, the city population is not present and the 


local daily has both fields to cover. But the question is 
not entirely confined to small towns. Many large city 
newspapers are more exclusively local than the smallest 
country weekly. Sometimes the policy is wise; some- 
times it is not. At any rate it deserves study in each in- 
dividual case. 

Some editors make it a rule to put on the front page 
each day at least one piece of news for each of the 
various kinds of readers in their circulation. Few edi- 
tors have analyzed this aspect. 

Many newspapers "play up" the same kind of news 
each day, forgetting the wide range of interests among 
their readers. A wiser policy would be to study "reader 
interest" and to play different kinds in turn. The daily 
accident or daily crime may have universal appeal, but 
certainly many readers are displeased with it. 

Although crime and violent death may occupy relatively 
a small amount of space, some editors, by crowding it all 
on the front page, make a "chamber of horrors" of their 
newspaper's show window. 

The effort to get a "big story" every day often distorts 
the news sense of the staff. Not every day has a big 
story, especially in smaller cities, and a wiser policy would 
be to emphasize properly all news available. 

Because of the extreme competition in some cities, there 
is a tendency in evaluating news to keep the editorial eye 
on the opposition newspaper, rather than on the* reader. 
After all, the paper is published for the reader, and there 
is no reason why each newspaper cannot do its own job 
as it thinks best, without so much regard to "the other 
fellow." Readers seldom compare the rival newspapers. 

Many newspaper practices are likely to be matters of 


office discipline, rather than careful analysis of reader 
interest. The scoop, the by-line, the "backing in" on 
stories that were missed, the careful parceling out of first 
and second day stories, the dreary following out of cer- 
tain routine news, and many other matters indicate a man- 
aging editor who is more interested in keeping his staff 
in order than in getting out a paper to interest his city. 

Some standing features, such as daily records, routine 
court affairs, the weather, vital statistics, obituaries, are 
badly handled in some newspapers. There are often read- 
ers who are interested in these features. 

Because of the number of syndicates, the energy of 
their salesmen, and the ease of using their product, many 
newspapers are making excessive use of this "non-news" 
material. Some are developing into "daily magazines/' 
printing more entertainment than news. At the same 
time, they are neglecting the valuable "local feature." 

The newjy acquired "leased wire" leads many a com- 
munity newspaper into excessive use of telegraph news, 
even to the extent of "playing up" non-local news above 
local news. 

It is seldom that a newspaper staff evaluates its product 
with a footrule to see just what it is giving the public. 
The following "measure" of the contents of a small city 
newspaper and of a metropolitan newspaper may suggest 
a possible procedure. The figures are column inches : 

Small City Daily. Exclusive of advertising, the paper con- 
tains 1,217 inches of reading matter, divided thus: news, 583; 
non-news (mainly syndicate), 568; editorials, 76. By source, 
its news is divided thus: national, 275; local, 210; state, 83; 
foreign, 15. 

By topic, its news divides thus: sports, 119; government, 63; 


markets, 60; crime, 59; education, 39; county correspondence, 
36; politics, 35; agriculture, 31; society, 30; social welfare, 25; 
music, 20; human interest, 14; obituary, 8; religion, 6; weather, 
6; labor, 5; etc. 

Non-news classifies thus: special features and cuts, 158; 
comics, 114; serial fiction, 58; movie news, 52; children's stories, 
43; cartoons, 42; verse, 19; recipes, 16; fashions, 15; health, 
business advice, etc. 

Conservative Metropolitan Newspaper. Exclusive of adver- 
tising, it contains 1,578 inches of reading matter, divided thus: 
news, 1,112; non-news, 406; editorials, 60. By source, its news 
is: local, 586; national, 314; foreign, 174; state, 37. 

By topic, its news is: business and finance, 366; government, 
160; sports, 132; politics, 118; crime, 80; society, 59; arts and 
science, 34; shipping, 33; social welfare, 31; education, 27; 
human interest, 19; churches, 18; labor, 10; weather, 8; obituary, 
4; fire, 4; civil courts, 3; scandal, 2. 

14; etc. 

nan interest, 19; churches, 18; labor, 10; weather, 8; obituary, 
fire, 4; civil courts, 3; scandal, 2. 

tfon-news classifies thus: special articles, 137; "colyums," 41; 
nics, 34; finance, 22; children, 14; household, 19; fiction,* 
; etc. 

Obviously neither newspaper has studied its readers 
as it might and is merely following a routine and a set of 
rule-of-thumb ideas. The small daily shows its new 
"leased wire" and is tending to be "a daily magazine." 

It is likely that such an evaluation of newspaper make- 
up and content, combined with study of reader interest, 
will be one of the next steps in American journalism. The 
business office of the newspaper has been studied scien- 
tifically; but the editorial side is still somewhat cluttered 
with outgrown traditions, hit-or-miss guesses, preju- 
dices, personal notions. A psychological study of it may 
show the reason for much present-day popular criticism 
of the press. But that is beyond the range of this book. 


Exercises * 

1. If printing laboratory is available, make-up may be prac- 
ticed on the stone. Linotype matter may be obtained from news- 
papers after it has been used in their regular editions. 

2. If no printing laboratory is available, make-up may be 
practiced with shears and paste-pot. Newspapers may be cut 
up into stories, reduced to galley form, and made up anew in 
various ways. 

3. Design and paste up front page dummies in imitation of 
various well-known newspapers. 

4. Dummy designs may be made of various inside and de- 
partment pages, such as editorial page, sport page, etc. 

5. Remaking of front pages for replate editions may be 
practiced thus : Take today's local paper, assume big story breaks, 
remake front page to get it in. Vary character of "news break/' 
and space needed for it. 

6. Cut up newspaper front pages and remake in accordance 
with various styles of make-up, redesigning and rewriting 

7. Practice making page schedules as foundation for dummies. 

8. One part of class may make up advertising schedule and 
dummy; another group then takes it and works out editorial 

9. Get all editions of one day of a metropolitan afternoon 
paper and study "remaking" involved. 

10. Compare make-up of city and mail editions of a metro- 
politan morning paper. 

11. Practice selecting photographs for print and writing 
specifications for engraver. 

12. Search standard newspapers for examples of all matters 
discussed in above chapter. 

13. Make a foot-rule analysis of a newspaper as suggested 
under "What News to Emphasize." 

14. Draw up a set of office rules for make-up man amplifying 
those under "Headline Display." 


15. Day after day, study news value of banner head story 
in various papers, watching for overplaying. 

16. Analyze reader interest of a particular newspaper and 
draw up office rules for front page news display. 

17. Analyze a newspaper page to determine how much space 
might be saved by certain changes in typography. 

18. Analyze the make-up of Sunday supplements and special 



ONLY a small proportion of the material printed in 
the average American newspaper today is prepared and 
written in the office. The present cost of production is 
so great that few newspapers can afford to hire a local 
staff large enough to write the newspaper's entire content 
every day. A large portion of their material is obtained 
from various cooperative and commercial agencies which 
are able to keep down the cost for any individual news- 
paper by supplying the same material to a large number 
of papers in various localities. In some small newspapers 
nine-tenths of the reading matter, exclusive of advertise- 
ments, is syndicated or association material. The propor- 
tion is of course smaller in large city dailies, although 
most of them depend upon press associations for their tele- 
graph news. Rare is the newspaper which does not devote 
at least ten per cent of its space to material secured in 
cooperation with other publishers. 

This cooperative material may be divided -roughly into 
two classes : association and syndicate material. Associa- 
tion material is primarily current news supplied daily by 
telephone or telegraph to enable newspapers to obtain all 
the news of the world without maintaining an extensive 
system of correspondents. It includes also local news 
* 231 


supplied in several large cities by city press associations. 
Syndicate material may include almost any kind of read- 
ing matter, supplied by wire, mail, or express, in type- 
written form, proof form, plate form, or in stereotype 
mats. This material is made up of condensed telegraph 
news, features, fillers, editorials, illustrations, special 
articles, interviews, speech reports, sporting news, bio- 
graphical material, ready-made advertisements, fiction 
stories and serials, comics, ready-made campaigns, and 
many other varieties. It is supplied by various methods 
and various companies and enables an editor to fill up at 
small cost all the many columns of his newspaper which 
are not occupied by local news, editorials, and advertise- 

The idea behind the syndicates and associations, what- 
ever may be their form and method, is cooperation, cut- 
ting down the cost of newspaper making by dividing it 
among a number of newspapers. Thereby an editor is 
able to publish a readable newspaper at a fraction of the 
cost of individual, independent operation. It would be 
impossible to include in this brief discussion all the various 
ways in which newspapers cooperate ; it will be sufficient 
to sketch the commonest means. 


If every newspaper depended upon its own resources to 
gather all the news outside its own city, it would need a 
correspondent in every city, town, and hamlet throughout 
the entire world. In the early days of American journal- 
ism that is what every newspaper tried to do in a more 
or less extensive way. But no one newspaper was rich 


Enough to cover the entire world with an adequate net- 
work of correspondents and the result was that various 
individual papers were constantly getting exclusive news 
of great import, to the dismay of their competitors, or 
being scooped on important news. The system was im- 
possible ; no one newspaper could gather all the news of 
the day through independent action. Besides this, the 
system led to a costly duplication of effort. If every one 
of the thousands of American newspapers had an ade- 
quate system of correspondents, most of the inhabitants 
of the globe would be newspaper correspondents. Co- 
operation in newsgathering to cover the news of the world 
has been evolved through a system of correspondents who 
represent entire associations of publishers rather than 
single newspapers. The modern newspaper depends upon 
such an association for the major portion of its outside 
news and maintains only a few special correspondents in 
localities in which it is especially interested. 

The association system was started in America in 1848 
when several New York newspapers organized coopera- 
tively to gather the news of the city, especially shipping 
news. During the Civil War, their association spread 
over the country to other newspapers, until now about 
1,250 newspapers are members of it and its news-gather- 
ing service is world wide. The organization is known as 
the Associated Press and is entirely cooperative. Each 
member assumes the obligation of supplying to the asso- 
ciation the major portion of the news of its locality and 
in turn receives the news supplied by all the other mem- 
bers, rewritten and condensed in accord with the change 
in news value resulting from distance. The cost of 
operating the enterprise is divided proportionally among 


the many members. Certain newspapers, too small to be 
full members, receive a daily ''pony" service a con- 
densed version of the world's news to the extent of a few 
hundred or few thousand words and pay proportion- 
ately. Until recently the "A. P." was primarily a service 
for morning newspapers but it now has a complete after- 
noon service. Although it supplies to its members all the 
important news of the day, its principal field is news break- 
ing between noon and midnight, too late for the evening 
papers. Ordinarily it has only one member in any city 
and does not supply its service to non-members. 

Another great American news association is the United 
Press Associations, founded in 1907 for afternoon papers, 
now serving about 900. It is a private corporation which 
sells its service to papers at a fixed rate. Its relation to 
its customers is, however, similar to that of the Associated 
Press to its members, and in extent and operation it is 
much the same. Recently it has organized a morning ser- 
vice, known as United News. Among other smaller press 
associations are the International (afternoon) and Uni- 
versal (morning) News Services, operated by the Hearst 
newspapers and selling news to others. Among the ser- 
vices of the past was the Laffan Service of the New York 
SHU. There is great rivalry between the various associa- 
tions, and a newspaper is as proud of a scoop secured by 
its association as of one made possible by its local staff. 
These associations take care of all American news and 
obtain foreign news through correspondents in various 
parts of the world and in cooperation with the great news- 
gathering agencies of other countries, such as Reuter's, 
Havas, Fabre, Bullier, Central News, Stephani, and other 


How the Association Works 

The manner in which these press associations gather 
arid distribute news may be illustrated by the organization 
of the Associated Press. The entire country is divided 
into several main divisions with headquarters in New 
York, Chicago, Washington, Atlanta, Kansas City, San 
Francisco, and other large news centers. The division 
headquarters are connected by main trunk lines of leased 
telegraph wires, some using double or triple wire service. 
The heart of the entire system is New York City, and 
from there main trunks run to the West via Chicago, the 
South via Washington and Atlanta, and to various large 
cities of New England and New York State. The south- 
ern division has its headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, but 
much of its news is filed at its two ends, Washington and 
Kansas City, and meets at Memphis. Washington con- 
stitutes a separate center in itself. Chicago is the head- 
quarters of the central division and has trunk lines to the 
Northwest via Milwaukee and St. Paul, to the Southwest 
via Kansas City, to the Coast via Omaha, Denver, Salt 
Lake City, and to St. Louis. Located at various points 
on these main trunk lines and subordinate to the division 
headquarteis are many district, or bureau, offices, which 
have charge of the newsgathering and distributing in their 
immediate vicinities. Some bureaus constitute relay 
points in which main trunk news is repeated, and from 
some bureaus go out state circuits, such as the New York 
state wire, the Kansas state wire, and the Michigan state 
wire. This press association operates 82,000 miles of 
leased wire in 100 main circuits and 47 state or special 
circuits, employs 1,000 telegraph operators, has 55 bu- 
reaus in America and 27 abroad, and serves 1,250 news- 


papers. Smaller newspapers receive about 15,000 words 
a day, while larger papers get perhaps 45,000. 

In organization the division office resembles a news- 
paper editorial office. Into it run telegraph wires from 
the other division headquarters, from the district offices 
of its division, and from various points in its local district. 
The work of the office consists in receiving news from 
these various sources, editing it to meet the needs of more 
or less distant newspapers, and sending it out again to 
other divisions, to its district offices, and to the various 
papers in its district. For example, suppose that an im- 
portant story is sent in to the Chicago division office from 
its correspondent at Springfield, Illinois. If it is of suf- 
ficient interest, it is sent in full to the eastern and southern 
division headquarters and to its various district offices, in 
slightly condensed form to far western offices, and in 
greatly condensed form to the newspapers of its district 
that receive only "pony" service. If of less importance, 
it is condensed for transmission to all points, except with- 
in the division. If of local interest only it is sent out only 
to papers within its own district. At the same time stories 
are coming in from other divisions that require similar 
treatment for further distribution. Still other stories, 
while being condensed for local distribution, are "relayed" 
through the office from east to west or west to east. All 
that is needed for the work of the office is a number of 
telegraph operators and a few editors, known as filing 
editors, who have a highly developed sense of news values. 
The work of district offices is similar although on a 
smaller basis. Part of their work is to send directly to 
the newspapers within the district which receive full 
"leased wire" or "pony" services, 


Most of this material is handled by telegraph. Some 
correspondence and distribution within a small district is 
done by mail. Long stories, such as complete speeches, 
which may be obtained in advance, are often sent out to 
the newspapers by mail, in typewritten or proof form, 
subject to "release" at a certain hour on a certain date 
or on the receipt of a release notice by wire. In some 
districts, pony services are distributed by long distance 
telephone, by a man in the district office reading into an 
instrument connected with a number of newspaper offices. 
In each office simultaneously a stenographer, with receivers 
clamped to his ears, takes down the news on a type- 
writer. When the service is received by telegraph, each 
newspaper must have a telegraph operator or receive the 
dispatches from the telegraph company's local agent. 
Most of the work is done by means of wires leased from 
the telegraph companies, and the newspaper that has its 
own operator is reached directly by a "loop" from the 
local telegraph office. A recent development in news 
transmission is the Morkrum Telegraph Printer, which is 
operated by a typewriter keyboard at the sending end and 
delivers typewritten copy at the receiving end. 

How the Service Comes to the Newspaper 

A newspaper that gets the complete service supplied to 
its district receives a more or less steady stream of mat- 
ter from early in the day until after midnight, and its 
operator takes down the matter in continuous typewritten 
form on numbered sheets of copy paper. Each story is 
headed by a separate dateline to indicate its source and its 
end is indicated by the mark "30" tised by the operators. 
The telegraph editor receives it sheet by sheet, edits it to 


suit the style and policy of his newspaper, cuts it up into 
stories, and turns it over to the composing room. After 
it reaches his hands it is handled as if it were local copy 
written by the reporters, although there is so much more 
than he needs that much of it must be thrown away. 

Although the service comes in a continuous stream, 
rarely is a complete story sent at one time. For the bene- 
fit of newspapers that have several editions and wish to 
get an edition on the press soon after the service begins, 
much of the important news is crowded toward the begin- 
ning. Hence early in the day, the paper receives a series 
of leads of important stories, each marked "More" at the 
end. Thus the essentials of the day's news are received 
first. Later in the day the remaining parts of these stories 
come in, labeled "Add Cincinnati Fire," "Add Spring'- 
field, Mass., Murder," "Follow Jackson Speech." Per- 
haps if there is much news, each story is broken into three 
or four "takes" arriving at various times. Later come 
"New Lead Cincinnati Fire," "Revised Lead Smith 
Trial," "Corrections for Chicago Wreck." If the news 
is being supplied as fast as the correspondent gathers it, 
the same story may have a number of revised leads as the 
day progresses. Expecting this, the telegraph editor holds 
each story as long as possible, if later developments are 
likely, or uses the new lead for a later edition. Frequent 
break-ins are made for corrections of facts and names in 
previous stories. More important than these are the 
"Bulletins" and "Flashes," cut in to hasten the service. 
For example, if the service is bringing an account of a 
football game, sent play by play from the press box at 
the field, the telegraph operator is likely to fall far behind 
in his sending, although he started sending introductory 



and descriptive matter long before the game started. 
Hence to aid the papers that are holding up extras waiting 
for results, the operator cuts in a "flash" at the end of 
each period, giving the score at that time. By the end 
of the game, although he is still sending accounts of 
plays early in the game, he stops long enough to flash the 
final score. The newspaper may then close its forms and 
save the rest for a later edition. 

For example, the "flashes" of one press association re- 
porting the nomination of a presidential candidate were 
(in part) : 

FLASH (at 1:16 p.m. C T.) Madison 
Square Garden, N. Y. With votes still to 
come on this ballot John W. Davis will have 
a majority. He is the first candidate to reach 
a majority in the convention. 

FLASH (at 1:17 p.m.) New York decided 
to change its votes and give Davis 90 votes 
after roll completed. Illinois expected to do 
likewise. Both Roosevelt and Brennan asking 

ADD RUNNING (i :i8) Brennan of Illi- 
nois asked recognition to change the vote to 
Illinois but was informed by the chairman that 
he must wait until conclusion of the ballot. 

FLASH (1:18) Iowa asked recognition of 
chair to swing entire vote to J. W. Davis. 

FLASH (i:i8)--Iowa withdraws Meredith's 
name and casts 26 votes for J. W. Davis. 

FLASH (1:20) California changes to 
Meredith one; Walsh 4; J. W. Davis 21. 

FLASH (1:21) Illinois changes vote to 
58 for J. W. Davis. 

FLASH (1:22) New York changes as fol- 
lows: Walsh 28; Davis 60. 

FLASH (1:22) Davis nominated. 

Cable Messages 

To save cost in cabling news, messages are usually 
skeletonized, or "skinned," before sending, and are trans- 
lated, or "unskinned," by the newspaper or press asso- 


ciation receiving them. Methods of "skinning" change, 
but the following newspaper cable (in part) will illustrate : 


7:48 p.m. Dec. 12 BERLIN Thompsons! 
Vienna via Budapest Quote communications 
strike necessary consequence long reconstruc- 
tion program and Austrian governments policy 
said foreign minister Grunberger interview] 
chancellor Seipel intends keep his word to un- 
|add item budget . . . (part omitted) . . . Sei- 
pel also protecting middle classes who been, 
among worst sufferers Austria and recognized 
need of educated man for something morenj 
food unquote asked whether any prospect so- 
cialists entering government ending continual] 
fight wherefrom whole population suffers 
Grumberger said saw unway admitting social- 
ists without fundamental changes policy 
whereto Austria pledged by league protocols 
unquote Seipel referred whole problem to 
parliament where socialists control twofifths 
votes compromise yet unfound estimated six- 
million letters await delivery industrial life 
practically standstill Conger. 


VIENNA, December 12. -"The communica-l 
tions strike is a necessary consequence of the! 
long reconstruction program and the Austrian] 
Government's policy," said Foreign Minister] 
Grunberger in an interview today. 

"Chancellor Seipel intends to keep his word 
not to add an item to the budget . . . (part 
omitted) . . . 

"Chancellor Seipel is also protecting the| 
middle classes, who have been among the 
worst sufferers in Austria, and has recognized 
Ithe need of the educated man for something! 
[more than food." 

Asked whether there was any prospect of 
the Socialists entering the Government and 
lending the continual fight from which the 
'whole population suffers, Herr Grunberger 
said he saw no way of admitting the Socialists 
without fundamental changes in the policy to 
which Austria had been pledged by the League 


Seipel has referred the whole problem to! 
Parliament, where the Socialists control two-] 
[fifths of the votes. 

A strike compromise has not yet been found. 
It is estimated that 6,000,000 letters await de- 
livery. Industrial life is virtually at a stand-; 


In several large cities, notably New York, Chicago, and 
Pittsburgh, city press associations are maintained, co- 
operatively or otherwise, to gather local news. For each 
newspaper to send men to all the police courts, fire sta- 
tions, hospitals, and other routine sources would mean 
much duplication, but through the city association, which 
maintains a staff of sixty or eighty reporters, they are 
able to cover the city at small cost. The city press ser- 
vice receives its news mainly by telephone from its re- 
porters, has it written by a few office men, reproduced fli 
many copies on a mimeograph machine (the desk man 
writes his story directly on the stencil) and sends it out 
through pneumatic tubes or private wires to various city 
newspaper offices. The newspaper editor depends largely 
on the city press for all routine news, usually rewriting 
the stories, and uses his own small staff to gather other 
news in which he is especially interested. From the point 
of view of the reporter, the city press affords excellent 
experience in newsgathering, but little opportunity to 
show writing ability. It is, however, a good place for the 
inexperienced beginner to go to when he seeks a position 
in the city, for if he does well there he is sure of consider- 
ation from the local city editors. 




Syndicate material is supplied to newspapers mainly by 
commercial firms which sell their service regularly or on 
occasion, charging on the basis of column, page, or week. 
The kinds of material supplied include almost every kind 
of reading matter that the newspaper editor needs. Syn- 
dicate services in general may be divided into four dif- 
ferent classes ; ready-prints, plate or matrix services, copy 
or proof services, and picture services. Several different 
kinds of service may be furnished by the same company 
and may be combined in a weekly service of various kinds. 


This name is applied to a kind of service whereby the 
inside pages of a newspaper are printed in the syndicate's 
own plant. It is intended especially for small weekly and 
semi-weekly newspapers and is dubbed "patent insides." 
In such a service, the syndicate prints the two or four 
inside pages of the newspaper, one side of the sheet, and 
the country editor prints the outside. The syndicate's 
pages are filled with general feature and informational 
material, set up in accordance with the newspaper's gen- 
eral size and appearance, and the content is changed for 
each edition. Such ready-prints cost the newspaper little, 
if any, more than white paper, and the editor is saved one 
run on the press and half the composition of his news- 
paper. The syndicate makes its profit from the advertis- 
ing carried in the ready-printed pages. 

Plate Service* 

The largest syndicate service received by small news- 
papers is a stereotype plate service sold by the column or 


the page. The content of the reading matter thus dis- 
tributed is written and set in type in the syndicate office ; 
it is then reproduced in the form of thin stereotype plates 
which are sent out to a large number of newspapers. The 
plates are one column wide, about two feet long and one- 
fourth inch thick, with grooved bottoms so that they 
may be fitted upon standard bases, kept by the newspaper, 
and thus be made type-high. The editor saws up the 
plates to fit the make-up of his newspaper and after he has 
used them returns them to the syndicate so that they can 
be melted up for future use. An editor who uses much 
of this matter is said to "edit his paper with a saw." 

Almost any kind of reading matter can be purchased in 
plate form. The editor may buy several columns of con- 
densed telegraph news, shipped to him each day early 
enough for his edition. His telegraph equipment then 
consists of a hack saw and a boy to meet the afternoon 
passenger train and receive the daily package of plates. 
He may buy all kinds of feature material, long or short, 
miscellaneous or classified. It may be a page of farm 
notes or a page on health. He may buy ready-made edi- 
torials and pert paragraphs, fillers and other short items, 
fashion notes, architectural ideas, political resumes, any 
kind of reading matter he desires. The syndicate will also 
supply him with plate illustrations of various kinds car- 
toons, photographs of prominent persons and places, 
sketches, maps, humorous drawings, comic strips. One 
of the latest developments is a page of ready-made ad- 
vertisements, written and set up in better form than the 
editor can accomplish, and arranged for him to mortise 
the name of the local advertiser at the bottom. These 
advertisements may be classified and accompanied by suit- 


able reading matter to attract the advertiser. All of this 
material is supplied in the form of plates as wide as the 
standard column, or several columns, if it is illustrative 
material. In handling it, the editor saws off as large a 
piece as he wants to use, slips it upon a base of the proper 
length, and locks it into the page form. Only a person 
experienced in such matters can distinguish it from ma- 
terial set in his own office. 

Matrix Service 

A modification of the plate service is the distribution of 
reading matter in the form of papier-mache stereotype 
mats. The editor receives the mat instead of the plate 
cast from it. A saving in shipping cost is thus accom- 
plished, for the mats are very light, but the editor must 
have facilities for casting plates from the mats. 

Biographical Syndicates 

There are regular services which supply biographical 
sketches and photographs of persons in the public eye. 
The sketch is printed in compact form and the picture is 
supplied in the form of a cut, a matrix, or a print that 
may be reproduced. The editor who buys such a service 
files the material in his "morgue" ready for instant use as 
soon as an obituary or biographical sketch in the daily 
paper is needed. 

Photo Syndicates 

Illustrative material for the newspaper may be pur- 
chased at small cost from photo syndicates which make 
a business of taking news photographs in all parts of the 
world and supplying photographic prints to subscribers. 
The editor does not ordinarily buy a regular service, but 


receives batches of pictures at regular intervals, from 
which he may select those which he wishes to use. He 
pays for as many as he keeps and sends the rest back. 
Most of the news-feature pictures that appear in news- 
papers are obtained in this way, as shown by credit lines. 
In smaller newspapers, however, they were purchased in 
plate form from companies which bought them from 
photo syndicates. 

Story Syndicates 

A large amount of the fiction and serial stories carried 
by newspapers and small magazines is purchased from 
syndicates which make a specialty of this material. It is 
sold in typewritten or proof form, and the purpose of the 
syndicate is to divide tip the author's price among a num- 
ber of publishers. The plan was started a few years ago 
by a New York magazine which made a business of syndi- 
cating to Sunday newspapers the excess of good material 
that came to it from its contributors. A large part of 
the content of the Sunday supplement is obtained in this 
way. Many authors now sell syndicate rights on their 
works, as well as the right of publication in one magazine. 

Syndicated Sunday Supplements 

With the growth of the special illustrated Sunday sup- 
plement, many schemes have been invented to supply 
newspapers with the large amount of material needed. 
One of them is the syndicated Sunday magazines which 
the newspaper uses as a special supplement of its Sun- 
day paper. Some newspapers print these Sunday maga- 
zines in their own plants, or buy the exclusive use of 
them, but the majority of the newspapers buy their Sun- 


day magazines from a syndicate which supplies them 
ready printed. There are of course several Sunday maga- 
zines and only one newspaper in any city buys the same 

Weekly Syndicate Services 

A combination of the other kinds of feature service is 
the daily service designed especially for city newspapers 
of fair size. It consists of a daily bundle of printed pages 
containing enough reading matter to fill several news- 
papers and the stereotype matrices of a large number of 
pictures to illustrate it. The service contains news 
articles, special features, newsy interviews, editorials, 
jokes, sporting news, special department material, fillers, 
comics, cartoons, news photographs, national society 
news, fashion notes, health notes, material for special 
campaigns, and many other kinds of reading matter. The 
service is supplied to only one newspaper in any one city 
and, were it not for the necessity of publishing some 
local news, the editor could make his entire newspaper out 
of the syndicate material. Some of it, in fact, is as 
newsy and interesting as his telegraph news and can 
hardly be distinguished from the matter which he receives 
by wire. The entire service, supplied six days a week, 
costs him about as much as one good reporter. He clips 
out what he wishes to use and sends it directly to the 
composing room. 


x. Obtain from local press association representative carbon 
copy of one or more days' complete report. Make thorough study 
of it and of the selection made by the local newspaper. 


2. Obtain from various syndicates, complete sets of services, 
study them, and note newspaper use of them. 

3. Practice handling the stories brought in "takes" and 
"flashes" by the press associations using carbon copy of daily 

4. From the press association obtain an "unskinned" cable 
story, mimeograph it, then "skin" it and edit it for use. 

5. Compare in two newspapers of same day, using same 
press association, the use made of various articles in the report. 

6. Study all the syndicate matter in a newspaper, noting credit 
lines, etc. 

7. Measure a newspaper with a foot-rule and find out how 
much, in column inches, is obtained from: (i) local staff work; 
(2) special correspondents; (3) press association; (4) syndi- 
cates; (5) other sources. Reduce figures to percentages. 

8. Compile a morgue from syndicate material, especially pic- 

9. Make a study of the ready prints, or "patent insides," of a 
country weekly newspaper. 

10. Study the stereotype plate matter ("boiler plate") in small 

11. Read some exchanges (papers from near-by cities) seek- 
ing: (i) local ends for the home paper; (2) ideas for make- 
up of departments and for display; (3) hints or tips for local 
features; (4) editorial comment for reprint; (5) tips for the 
managing editor; (6) miscellany for reprint. Edit copy for use. 

12. Practice in receiving "pony" telephone service may be 
obtained by installing an extension on an office telephone, in 
another office. Toe-button to cut out transmitter, as well as 
head phones, may be obtained from telephone company. One 
student may dictate to another, reading daily newspaper. 



AMONG the various duties assigned to the desk man in 
the average newspaper office, there is more or less original 
writing of various kinds. A fair portion of the news- 
paper's content requires no newsgathering and hence may 
be written by a copyreader or some other office man. 
Some large offices hire special "rewrite" men to do this 
office writing, but few staffs have such a minute division 
of duty. The average copyreader must be as ready to 
dash off a story from facts telephoned in by a reporter 
as to edit copy, as skilled at writing an obituary from 
facts dug out of the morgue as at writing headlines. 

One special form of writing, which often falls to the 
hands of the desk man, consists of preparing the various 
kinds of rewrite and follow stories that constitute the 
foundation of each day's issue. This "rewriting" results 
from the fact that any newspaper regards as its news field 
only one half the time that elapses between issues. The 
field of the morning newspaper -is from aboujt four 
o'clock the previous evening to four o'clock in the morn- 
ing. The rest of the twenty-four hours, from four A. M. 
to four P. M., is the field of the evening paper. Whatever 
happens in the newspaper's own field of action is con- 
sidered material for original newsgathering. Whatever 
happened in the preceding twelve hours was supposedly 


covered by its predecessor. Yet, since many newspaper 
readers buy only one paper a day, the morning paper can- 
not utterly disregard the events recounted in the previous 
afternoon paper, and the evening paper must present a 
summary of the news printed in the morning paper which 
appeared since its own last edition. This "rehashing" of 
slightly old news results in the special kinds of news story 
known as the rewrite, the "boiled" story, and the follow- 
up, or follow, story. 

The first step in the preparation of each day's issue is 
this rewriting. In some offices it is called "laying the 
foundation," and it is almost always done by some desk 
man or subordinate editor. In some small offices the city 
editor does it. The man who lays the foundation arrives 
long before the rest of the staff and devotes himself to 
reading the newspapers that have appeared since the last 
edition of his own paper. He scans them carefully and 
clips out all items that deserve mention in his own paper. 
Some items he sets aside to be rewritten ; other items he 
saves for the city editor to follow up; still others he 
designates for boiling. Sometimes he does the rewriting 
himself ; in other cases he gives the task to another office 
man. In such case, he indicates by an underscored, word 
or two the new element to be emphasized. The follow 
items he lists in the city editor's assignment sheet. 

The idea behind the writing of all of these various 
kinds of "rehash" stories rewrite or follow is to give 
the account a new slant or a new feature. The writer has 
in mind, not only the reader to whom the item is news, 
but also the reader who has seen the previous account. 
The difference between the two kinds of "rehash" story 
is that the rewrite contains nothing more than was in the 


original story, while the follow story presents later de- 
velopments and additional facts. The rewrite is based 
entirely on the first story; whereas the follow requires 
additional newsgathering. 


The rewrite story, as suggested above, is nothing more 
or less than an old story retold from a new point of view, 
rejuvenated by a different treatment that makes it appear 
new. The rewrite man gives it this new twist by looking 
through it for a new feature, a new beginning. He writes 
a new lead on the old facts, playing up the new feature 
.that he has decided to emphasize, and rewrites the entire 
story in accordance with the new point of view. The re- 
sult contains no new facts but appears new. It is usually 
shorter, also, since the rehash is not worth as much space 
as fresh news. 

In seeking this new feature, the rewrite man looks 
through the old story for some fact or element that the 
original writer failed to elaborate or emphasize. If the 
original story played up the cause of the fire, he empha- 
sizes the property loss or some other striking element. 
Perhaps he finds only a possibility of showing the relation 
between the story and some other event it may be the 
third murder in two days. Perhaps the story gives him 
an opportunity to begin his rewrite with the next prob- 
able development. He shows the firemen searching the 
ruins, the police scouring for the robber, or the arrested 
culprit in the magistrate's court. These expedients fail- 
ing, he may begin his story with some subordinate item 
expressed in more striking terms. The following are 
examples of rewrite leads : 


Reckless driving was the charge made 
against Samuel Johnson, carpenter, 367 N. 
Mills street, who was arraigned in municipal 
court this morning. He was severely cen- 
sured by Judge Malcolm Smith for failing 
to slow up while passing the Lincoln school 
and running down a 4-year-old boy. 

This is the third time Johnson has ap- 
peared before Judge Smith for reckless 
speeding and the judge said (and so on for 
several paragraphs including the judge's 


"I advise you to quit driving an auto." 
This advice was given to Samuel Johnson, 
carpenter, 367 N. Mills street, who was ar- 
raigned in municipal court this morning on 
the charge of reckless driving. 


Collision between a jitney bus driven by 
John Hanson and a private automobile at 
Mayner avenue and Newhall street at noon 
yesterday caused severe injuries to one 
youth and six other high school boys. They 
were hurled many feet through the air. 


George Bandell, age 15, son of the presi-: 
dent of the first national bank, was thrown 
from his seat in a jitney bus yesterday and 
severely injured. The bus collided with a 
private automobile at the corner of Mayner 
avenue and Newhall street and seven high! 
school boys, including Bandell, were hurled 
through the air. i 


The newsiest beginning of a rewrite story is usually: 
(i) a feature that was overlooked in the original; (2) 
a feature that was buried; (3) a forecast of the next 
development; (4) the relation to other events; (5) the 
local end; (6) the cause or motive. The rest of the re- 
write story is a retelling of the original story in con- 
densed form. The writer takes care, however, to use new 
expressions, to reverse the order, and to emphasize other 

Four "Musts" for a rewrite story are : 

1. Must be shorter than first story, from one-third to 

one-half of original length. 

2. Must base its interest on new feature or angle. 

3. Must be written in better style, because it has less 

news value. 

4. Original story must be entirely rewritten every para- 

graph, every sentence. Some careless workers 
simply write a new lead and paste to it some para- 
graphs of the former story ; the best offices do not 
consider this adequate rewriting. 


The writing of what may conveniently be called the 
"boiled story" takes care of much of the rewrite material 
in many large offices. To handle all the material of a 
previous edition in rewrite stories would take up so much 
valuable space that much fresh news would need to be 
omitted or condensed. To save space the rewrite man 
must either throw away many important items or con- 
dense a large number of them to the briefest possible 
terms. The latter practice has long been common in many 


offices, and its result is a column or two daily of rehashed 
material in the form of short items. Ordinarily these 
items are grouped together under a general heading, such 
as, "City News in Brief/' "Do You Know That," "The 
City News Ticker," "Tabloids," "Grist from the Day's 
Grind," etc. The articles may be classified as telegraph 
or local, state or national. Sometimes a small headline 
precedes each item; sometimes the items are separated 
by short rules and distinguished by a few words in capi- 
tal letters in the first line. 

The writing of such items is an art that requires long 
practice and a highly cultivated sense of news values. To 
condense a long story to one or two sentences means that 
only the most significant facts may be included and that 
every word must count. Decided emphasis must be 
placed on the feature, and usually the feature played up 
is not the one emphasized in the first story. Although the 
items are short and to the point, they always give an 
identification of the person concerned, address, time and 
place. The following will illustrate. 

Falling over a fence around a newly laid 
cement sidewalk, Roger Ostermoor, aged 47, 
841 Seventh street, broke his arm and two 
ribs last night. 

Fire damaged the two-story frame car- 
penter shop of Carl Goodsole, 165 W. Fifth 
street, yesterday morning. Damage is 

The Madison police are searching for 
Mrs. Emma Hasward, who escaped from 
the Whitehall i*i?*tu asylum Wednesday] 


Traffic policemen will wear white caps 
lafter June I, according to Redford Bladen, 
(chief of police. 

Two persons were slightly injured when 
an automobile belonging to Small Smith 
736 West avenue, ran into a telephone pole 
last night. 

The man who committed suicide by throw- 
ing himself in front of a Central passenger 
train Monday night has been identified as 
'William Sand, 293 Maquard street. 

Dancing in public parks will be the sub- 
ject of discussion at the regular meeting of 
|the Citizens' club tomorrow. 

Sixteen military organizations in the city 
have petitioned the major to use his influ- 
ence to keep picnic parties out of Armory 
Igrove this summer. 

James Lungwith and Fred Naazur were 
fined $25 in court yesterday for carrying 
revolvers. They declared that they had $43 
and needed protection. 

Because he allowed his 1 3-year-old daugh- 
ter to sell postcards and gum on the streets, 
Henry Grover, a peddler, was arrested yes- 
terday on the charge of violating the child 
abor law. 


The follow-up, or follow, story is not always written 
by the desk man. When additional newsgathering is re- 
quired the story is turned over to the city editor and is 
handled by a reporter as an assignment. But since the 


additional material may frequently be obtained by one or 
two telephone calls to the news sources indicated in the 
story, the rewrite man often handles the follow. 

The first step in the writing of a follow stoi^ is to look 
over the clipping upon which it is to be based, to discover 
what phases of the story may be followed up, what subse- 
quent developments may be expected. If it is an accident 
story, the rewrite man may look for more complete data 
in regard to the fatalities or injuries, the present condi- 
tion of the victims, the fixing of the blame. If it is a rob- 
bery story, he looks into the resulting pursuit, capture, or 
trial, or, in the case of a public institution, its present 
financial condition. A murder story affords follow pos- 
sibilities in the pursuit, capture, or trial hearing of the 
criminal, the present conditions of the victim of attempted 
murder, the unraveling of the various phases of the mys- 
tery surrounding the crime. Suicide offers inquiry into 
the disposition of the body, the present condition of the 
victim if the attempt was unsuccessful, the disposition of 
the victim's estate or the action of relatives. Storms, 
floods, and other disasters offer follow possibilities for 
special reportorial assignments. Often the best follow- 
up is an interview with some of the persons concerned or 
with some of the authorities who have the case in hand. 
Once the rewrite man has decided what elements in the 
story offer follow-up possibilities, he must decide whether 
to turn the matter over to the city editor or try himself 
to get the necessary information for the follow over the 

The writing of the follow story involves characteristic 
problems. It cannot be treated in exactly the same way 
as a news story because it does not contain strictly fresh 


news and is written for two different kinds of readers 
the man who read the previous story and the man who did 
not. Hencg it involves the presentation of the subsequent 
developments, plus a synopsis of the original account. 
The most interesting part is its method of recalling the 
original incident so as to enlighten the new reader with- 
out offending the old with reiterations. 

The lead of the follow-up story usually begins with the 
subsequent developments, stated in newsy form. After 
this it runs into a resume of the gist of the previous story 
with an elaboration of the facts in the case. It is to be 
noted that this involves the use of the definite article and 
a reference to the matter which suggests that the writer 
is merely recalling the previous event. Thus, although 
the first story referred to the accident as "a fire which 
destroyed/' the follow recalls it as "the fire which des- 
troyed." But in spite of this suggestion of recalling the 
incident, the rewrite man takes care to elaborate the pre- 
vious facts and identify the case so fully that the new 
reader does not feel that he has missed anything. For 
example : 


Propped against a telephone pole, the body 
of 6-year-old Arthur Wendzog, 268 Water 
street, was found apparently strangled to 
death at 5 A. M. this morning. 


Two stained rags are the only basis on 
which the police now hold out hope of 
obtaining a clue to the murder of 6-year-old 
Arthur Wendzog, 268 Water street, who 
was found strangled to death in an alley 
near his home yesterday morning. 


After the lead, the first two or three paragraphs are 
devoted to the elaboration of the new developments, for 
they are of greatest interest to all readers. The rest of 
the story is then a synopsis or summary of the material in 
the clipping on which the follow is based. The summary 
involves a general reversal of all the material in the first 
story and usually some condensing. 


x. Study rewrites and follows in successive editions of news- 
papers in the same field. Trace each story separately. 

2. Read a local morning paper "to lay the foundation" for the 
afternoon paper or vice versa. Clip and separate all local copy 
into these groups: (i) to be rewritten; (2) to be boiled down 
to "Locals"; (3) to go to city editor for follow up; (4) to go 
into datebook; (5) to be killed. Write all the stories of first 
two groups. 

3. Practice making rewrites based on stories in local papers. 

4. Practice boiling stories to a paragraph ; make a column of 
such items from local paper. 

5. Practice writing follows by assuming new developments in 
local stories. 

6. From a pile of city newspapers, prepare a column of 
"Humor and Pathos in the News/' by rewriting human interest 
stories into "Tabloids" of less than thirty-five words each. 

7. From a pile of exchanges, write half a column of two-line, 
three-line, and four-line "time" fillers for make-up. 

8. Clip miscellany from exchanges and prepare for reprint, 
with headlines and credits. 




A KNOWLEDGE of type its nature, measurement, pos- 
sibilities, and limitations is absolutely necessary for suc- 
cess as a newspaper desk man or editor. The close rela- 
tion between the mechanical department and editorial staff 
makes this so. Half the work of publishing a newspaper 
is nothing more or less than a printing job, and the desk 
man, acting as he does as director of the printers who 
are doing the work, should be able to talk their language 
and to understand their work. It is not necessary to be 
able to "stick" type or to operate a linotype machine, but 
it is necessary to know the problems that the typesetter 
and linotype operator face. Unless the desk man under- 
stands type, he cannot successfully edit copy, write head- 
lines, direct make-up, or intelligently suggest changes in 

To understand the printer's work, the desk man must 
know (i) the various ways of measuring type matter 
and their interrelation, (2) the names of the various sizes, 
(3) the uses of the various sizes, (4) the various styles 
of type and their uses, (5) the various families of type, 
(6) the way in which printers set type by hand, (7) the 
operation of the various composing machines, (8) the 
additional furniture and equipment used in putting to- 
gether pages, and (9) the language of the printing office, 
so that he can specify type and indicate his wishes with a 


fair degree of certainty that the printer will understand 
his specifications. This would appear very complicated, 
but a study of the principles of the printer's work and a 
few visits to the composing room will lay a good founda- 
tion for the development of a thorough knowledge. No 
one, however, should hope to learn all there is to know 
about type; it is one of the largest subjects in the world. 

Inelasticity of Type 

The first and hardest thing to learn about type is its 
absolute inelasticity. "Type is not made of rubber," as 
the printers remark. The statement sounds reasonable, 
but the man who is used to working with longhand or 
typewritten manuscript sometimes fails to grasp it. He 
has an unconscious feeling that another word can be 
crowded into this line or another may be extracted from 
that without making any material difference. He doesn't 
realize that every individual letter and space is a separate 
piece of metal of definite size and that they must fit to- 
gether with microscopic exactness. A page form is made 
up of thousands of these tiny pieces of metal fitted to- 
gether so perfectly that, after pressure has been applied to 
the four edges of the form, the entire page of type may 
be handled as one piece without a single piece of metal 
falling out. It is like a complicated puzzle and every part 
of it must fit within a hair's breadth; one piece too large or 
too small will break the even pressure and allow part or 
all of the form to collapse. 

The student must grasp this idea at the outset before 
going further with the study of type. If necessary he 
must go to the composing room and try to fit together a 
few lines of type to see the application of the principle. 

TYPE 263 

After that he will never again call for a few letters of pica 
type in a brevier line or try to crowd an extra letter into 
a "fat" headline. 

The Single Piece of Type 

Every piece of type is a piece of metal with three dimen- 
sions. It is a rectangular stick with a flat base, four flat 
sides, and a flat top on which a letter or character is raised 
in high relief. The names of the various parts of the 
type are : the raised character is the face; the flat top on 
which the face stands is the shoulder; the body of the 
piece of type of which the shoulder is the top is calted 
the shank. On the bottom of the type is a heel nick which 
gives the type two feet to stand on ; in the front side of 
the shank is another nick which tells the printer, by feel- 
ing, which is the bottom of the letter; extra nicks are 
sometimes cut in the front to distinguish certain small 
capital letters that may easily be confused with small 
letters. In the form, the type stands firmly on its flat 
base, held in an upright position by other pieces of type 
pressed against its four sides. A number of such pieces 
of type set together in this way form with their tops a 
flat surface containing raised characters which press ink 
into the paper when the form is placed on the press. The 
fact that in each type the shoulder is slightly larger than 
the face affords white space about the printed letters. If 
one type projects above the others it cuts through the 
paper or raises it away from the other types ; if too short 
it does not touch the paper; if one piece of type is 
too small in its other dimensions, it falls out of the 
form; if too large it bulges the line and other types fall 


How Type Is Measured 

Of the three dimensions possessed by every piece of 
type, only two are considered in type measurement. The 
third dimension the height of the shank from base to 
top is the same in all type 0.918 inch. That is, it is 
the same in all American and English type, although it 
varies in other countries. The two measurements that 
must be considered are its width and height as one looks 
at its end in other words, the height and width of the 
letter as it appears on the printed page. This is the only 
height that is considered in subsequent discussion. Fur- 
thermore, the width and height that concern the printer 
are not those of the raised letter, but those of the shoulder 
itself the square end of the type which supports the 
raised letter. This square shoulder is slightly larger than 
the letter itself, so as to afford white space between letters 
and lines and to allow for the varying size and shape of 
different letters. In other words, since some letters are 
larger than others in the same font and some extend above 
or below the general line, the printer must consider the 
'dimensions of the shoulder on which the letter rests. 
Thus, although h is taller than o and p extends below the 
line, the shoulders of the types which print h, o f and p, in 
the same font, are of the same height, and the printer's 
measurements deal with the size of the shoulder. 

Of the two dimensions of the shoulder, furthermore, 
the height is the more important. If a line of type is to 
be straight, all the type in it must have the same height, 
but there need not be any such regularity in width, so long 
as the lines come out even at the end. Therefore, although 
in any given font all the type is of the same height, there 
is great variation in width. In other words, m and * are 

TYPE 265 

the same height, but not the same width. The m type is 
as wide as three % types placed side by side but it fits in 
the same line because its height is the same. 

It is therefore evident that type measurement in general 
is just a measurement of the height of the type as it ap- 
pears on the printed page. In the modern point system, 
to be discussed later, the height of the letter is taken to 
be ,the distance from the line formed by the bases of all 
the letters to the top of the shoulder. The difference be- 
tween two sizes or two fonts is simply a difference in this 

Old Methods of Measuring Type 

Until very recently there was no definite, universal 
system of type measurement. Various sizes were desig- 
nated in general by a series of names .type approximat- 
ing one-sixth of an inch in height was called pica; type of 
about half that size was call nonpareil, etc. But the vari- 
ous sizes varied in different type foundaries and there 
was no uniformity of size. Pica type made by one 
foundry might be noticeably larger than pica from an- 
other; brevier from one foundry could not be used in the 
same line with brevier from another. Hence there was 
endless confusion in the printing offices. If an office had 
two fonts of minion and the "printer's devil" mixed them 
up, both fonts were useless until sorted again. Printers 
were continually forced to "bodge" with cards to make 
types justify and line. 

Not until 1886 was this confusion ended by the estab- 
lishment of a uniform system of type measurement in all 
American foundries & system which all printers now 
know as the point system. French type founders began 


work on a uniform system as early as 1737 and had 
worked out a plan generally adopted throughout Europe 
before 1800. In America no attempt to correlate the 
type of various foundries was made until 1822, and the 
first definite step was taken by a Chicago firm of type 
founders which lost its plant in the great fire of 1871. 
Their system, with some modifications, was adopted by 
the American Type Founders' Association in 1886. It is 
now universal in America, but it does not correspond with 
the European point system. The system is somewhat 
complicated, also, because it is not metric or decimal, but 
is simply a correlation and adjustment of former sizes to 
a systematic plan of measurement. The old pica type of 
one foundry which happened to be about 1/6 inch tall 
was taken as the basis and called 12-point and other sizes 
were correlated with it. The standard pica of the point 
system is, to be exact, 0.16604 inch. 

The Point System 

The unit of measurement in the point system is the 
point, or 1/72 inch. All sizes of type are designated in 
multiples of this point. Eight-point type is thus 8/72 
inch high; lo-point type is 10/72 inch high; 72-point type 
is 72/72, or i inch high. As the point system is the 
measurement of the shoulder of the type, it allows for 
space normally shown between lines set solid, without 
lead between the lines. Thus nine lines of 8-point type 
approximately fill i inch; twdve lines of 6-point occupy 
the same space; an inch will accommodate 10.2 lines of 
7-point type. On this basis, the number of lines of any 
size of type a given space will accommodate can be de- 

TYPE 267 

Names of the Various Sizes 

As the adoption of the point system was only a read- 
justment of old sizes to numerical measurement, many 
of the old names are still used in connection with the new 
system. The new 12-point is the same size as the old pica 
and therefore is now known as 12-point or pica; similarly 
the old name brevier is applied to the 8-point. The fol- 
lowing is a list of old names now in use and their point 
sizes ; each is set in the size designated : 


4 ...... 


10. . . 

11. . . 



Long Primer 
. . Small Pica 
. . . Pica 

7 ..... Minion 16. . . Columbian 
9'. ". ". '. '.BoJgeoS is- Great Primer 

Body type is usually made in 5-, 5J4-, 6-, 7-, 8-, 9-, 10-, 
II-, 12-, 14-, and i8-point. The usual display sizes 
above 14-point are 18-, 24-, 30-, 36-, 42-, 48-, 54-, 60, 
and 72-point in general, they run in 6-point jumps up to 
60; in 12-point jumps above 60. Some series have also 
2 > 56, 96, and 1 20. The smallest sizes are excelsior 
(3-point), sometimes used in fractions, and microsco- 
pique (2 y* -point). There are many other names such as 
Paragon (20), double-pica (24), Canon (48), but they 
are rapidly giving way to the newer point designations. 

Standard Line 

Although the original point system, applied only to the 
height of the letter, certain type founders are now using 


it in connection with the width of the fetter. That is, 
instead of allowing the set-width of the letter to be what- 
ever the face happens to make it, they change the set-width 
enough to give it a point measurement. The advantage of 
the system is that with all letters cut in widths which are 
exact multiples of the standard unit, the point, it is easier 
to justify the lines to fill them exactly. The position of 
the face on the shoulder, also, was until recently variable 
in different fonts and sizes, and types of different fonts, 
although of the same point height, would not line together, 
that is, some letters were nearer the top of the shoulder. 
This difficulty has been overcome by the adoption of the 
standard line in most American and some English foun- 
dries. In all type cut on the standard line the distance 
from the bottom of the shoulder to the base of the letter 
is the same and type from various fonts will line together. 
It is to be noticed, however, that there are two standard 
lines, one for body type and another for display type. 
Type cut on the display line is designated as the lining 
series and cannot be used in the same line with standard 
line body type. 

Uses of Various Sizes 

The sizes commonly used in newspaper work are non- 
pareil, minion, and brevier. Agate is taken as the stand- 
ard of measurement in advertisements, but it is seldom 
actually used; advertising space is sold by the agate line 
and fourteen agate lines equal an inch of advertising 
space. Bourgeois, long primer, and small pica are the 
types most commonly used in book work. Larger sizes 
are most frequently used in display only. 

The special uses of the various sizes are as follows: 

TYPE 269 

Diamond is the smallest type regularly made and is used 
only in small Bibles and prayer-books. Pearl is some- 
times used for the same purpose and finds some utility in 
notes and references in small dictionaries. Agate is some- 
times used in market reports in newspapers and for similar 
purposes. Nonpareil is the smallest type that can possibly 
be used in book work and even then it is used only for 
footnotes, indices, etc. ; some newspapers use it for very 
unimportant stories. Minion is commonly used as body 
type in large newspapers and occasionally as a subordinate 
type in book work. Brevier is the body type most often 
seen in small newspapers as well as in cheap book edi- 
tions; it is commonly used in all printing work when a 
small type is desired. Bourgeois (pronounced bur-jois) 
is the type commonly used in magazine printing and in 
double-column books ; it is a readable type but is too small 
for long lines in book work. Long primer is most fre- 
quently used in book work; newspapers also use it for 
important articles and editorials, especially in bold face. 
Small pica is the type of rich editions in which space is 
not important. Pica is the standard unit of measurement 
for column widths and printing furniture, but it is seldom 
used except as display or in very rich book work. English 
is now a display type only although it finds some use in 
Bibles and other church books for pulpit reading. Great 
primer, except as a display type, is used only in children's 
books and large quarto volumes. 

Column Widths 

In our study of type measurement, we found that the 
width of individual letters need be taken into considera- 


tion only in connection with the length of lines. As the 
letters vary greatly in width, printers have found it con- 
venient to adopt one letter, the m, as the unit of line 
measurement. The m is used in preference to any other 
letter because in any font the shoulder of the m type is 
exactly square. For example, in 8-point type, which is 
8/72 inch high, the m is 8/72 inch wide. Column widths 
and line-lengths are therefore designated in "ems." Ten 
ems of 8-point type is 80/72, or 1-1/9 inches, long. Type- 
setters are usually paid space rates and their work is esti- 
mated on the basis of one thousand ems of the type they 
set, regardless of the space it fills. Although one thou- 
sand ems of nonpareil fill only about half as much space 
as one thousand ems of pica, the printer is paid the same 
for each. 

In measuring column widths and printing space in 
general, however, the pica or i2-point em is used as the 
standard unit. The pica em is a convenient unit because 
it is 12/72 or 1/6 inch wide. The 2-1/6-inch column 
commonly used in newspapers is designated as 13 ems 
wide, whether it is set in 6-point or 8-point. Other spaces 
are designated accordingly as 18 ems, 21 ems, 25 ems, 
or whatever the case may be, and the length of the line can 
be figured out on the basis of 6 ems to the inch. To avoid 
confusion, it is customary to specify in "ems pica"; thus, 
8-point Roman, 15 ems pica. An easy way to become 
familiar with the system is to do a few problems in figur- 
ing space on the basis of printing measurements; for in- 
stance, how many lines can be used and what line-length 
should be specified to fill a space 4 inches wide and 7 inches 
high with 9-point type ? 

TYPE 271 

Variation in Width of Type Face 

It has probably been noted that there is much variation 
in the width of the same letters in different styles of type, 
although the height of the letters is the same. The 30- 
point letter O used in the usual newspaper headline is 
decidedly narrower than some other 3<>point O used in 
an advertisement. This is because the proportion between 
the width and height of letters is not the same in all type. 
Every different font and family has its own proportion, 
and the proportion may vary within the same font. The 
reason is that every style of type is made in three or four 
different widths to suit special purposes. There is no defi- 
nite system of measuring the various proportions, but 
special names are applied to various widths. The type 
in its common form is designated as standard width, nar- 
rower type of the same size is called condensed, wider 
type is called extended, and the narrowest is known as 
extra? condensed. 





Variation in Body Size 

Although the size of type is measured by the size of 
the body rather than the size of the letter, there is some 
variation in the relation between the two. The variation 
results from the fact that it is often desirable to increase 
the space between lines, and the type founders make up 
small type on larger bodies to save the printer the trouble 
of placing strips of metal, or "lead/' between the lines of 


type. In specifying such type, the printer must give two 
sizes the size of the type face and the size of the body. 
When he calls for 8-point type on p-point body, he is 
given a type of the usual 8-point face on a body large 
enough to give an extra 1/72 inch between each pair of 
lines. Many fonts are regularly made in this way be- 
cause their design calls for wide spacing between lines. 
The 8-point on p-point body size is common in small 
newspapers, and jopoint on 12-point body is frequently 
used in magazine work. 

Styles of Type 

Certain general kinds and styles of type are so com- 
monly used that they deserve mention here. The kind of 
type ordinarily used in reading matter is called body type, 
as distinguished from display type used in headings and 
prominent lines. The common body type in use in Ameri- 
can newspapers and magazines is designated as Roman. 
In its commonest form it is called thin-faced Roman; 
when it is heavier and blacker it is known as bold or 
black-face Roman. Any kind of type, in the same way, 
is called bold when it is heavy and black, and most styles 
are made both in thin-face and bold. Type that slants 
toward the right is known as italic; it may be thin- faced 
or bold italic and is usually found in every font. Besides 
the regular capital and small letters, most fonts also con- 
tain another style called small capitals they are capitals 
of the same height as the small letters of the same size. 

This line is set in thin-faced Roman 

This line Is set In black-faced Roman 

This line is set in Italic 

TYPE 273 

Type Families 

One step beyond the standard styles, which are a regu- 
lar part of every font of type, is the classification of type 
into great families designed at various times by different 
type founders. Certain of the designs go back so far into 
typographical history that they may be classified in gen- 
eral as old style, antique, modern, and fancy faces. Old 
style is characterized by short serif (cross-marks at the 
ends of strokes), long connecting fillets between the serifs 
and main strokes, and small figures. The lines of old 
style are frequently wavy and broken in imitation of the 
imperfect work of early type makers. Antique type has 
bolder serifs and a uniform line with little shading. 
Modern type has longer serifs, shorter fillets, greater 
shading, and large figures. 

A proper classification of type divides it first into 
groups (such as Gothic, Roman, script, black letter, etc.) ; 
within the groups are families (such as Caslon, Chelten- 
ham, Bodoni) ; families are divided into series (such as 
Caslon Bold Condensed) ; series are divided into sizes 
(such as brevier, or 8-point). One of the great groups 
is the Gothic which is characterized by extreme plainness 
and lack of ornamentation ; it is the "block letter" of sign 
painters. It appears in many styles and has been much 
used in headlines. The various kinds of script type make 
another group which imitates handwriting. In American 
offices, the type of some foreign countries and of older 
times is called black letter; it imitates medieval copyists 
and includes Old English, German, Tudor, Missal, etc. 
To learn the vast range of type faces and styles, as well 
as their classification and names, it is best to study the 


catalogues of the type founders. It is well to be able to 
identify the commonest of them. 

Printer's Furniture 

Pieces of wood or metal used to fill space are called 
furniture. Printer's equipment also includes many other 
pieces used to print lines or other kinds of impressions. 
Most of it is now made in accordance with the point 
system and is measured in points or ems pica. Thin 
strips of metal used to increase the space between lines of 
type are known as leads and are 2 points or 2/72 inch 
thick. When a single lead is placed between each pair 
of lines, it is said to be leaded. If two 2-point strips are 
used, it is double-leaded; wider leads are called slugs. 
Without leads, it is said to be set solid. A reglet is a 
wood strip (6- or 1 2-point) used in spacing. The blank 
pieces of type used between words are spaces A wider 
space, used for indention, is a quad; it may be i-em 
(mutton quad), i-en (nut quad), 2-em, 2-en, etc. (One 
em is twice one en in width.) Spaces vary in width and 
it is through this variation that the printer takes up space 
to make lines the same length they are the only elastic 
elements in typography. After the printer has set up about 
as many words as a line will hold, with average spaces 
between them, he adjusts the length of the line by sub- 
stituting thinner or fatter spaces in each position; this 
operation is called justifying. Printers sometimes justify 
by letter-spacing between letters. 

Any strip of metal that prints a line is called a rule; it 
is made of brass and its thickness is measured in points. 
The long rules between newspaper columns are called 
column rules and rules below incomplete or squarcd-up 

TYPE 375 

articles are cut-off rules. Sometimes cut-offs print wavy 
lines. The common rules used in newspapers are hairline, 
%-point, and 6-point. If a newspaper is printed with the 
rules upside down so that the flat bases strike the paper, 
the effect is called turned rules. Some rules, called double 
rules, print fine parallel lines; others, called perforating 
rules, cut a row of small holes through the paper ; others 
print a line of leaders. Borders are decorative rules or 
series of metal pieces, like type, that may be used as a 
frame about type matter. When a frame made up of 
simple straight rules is used in the newspaper it is called 
a box. A border made of asterisks is a star-box. Pieces 
of cut-off rule below banner heads are dingbats. Short 
lines between articles and headline decks are dashes .they 
are usually 3-em, 5-em, 7-em, etc. All of these are made 
of brass, type metal, or wood. Wood is used largely in 
filling up large blank spaces, for every fraction of space 
must be made snug and tight. Some large letters and 
cuts are also made of hard wood to save weight, since a 
square foot of type matter weighs about .thirty-seven 

Other Typographical Terms 

Many of the terms which the typesetter uses are de- 
rived from the names of his implements. For instance, 
he measures his work by the stickful the amount of type 
which may be placed in the composing stick which he uses. 
The stick is a three-sided metal tray, about as large as 
the palm of the hand, with one side adjustable to match 
varying line-length. When full, it holds about two inches 
of type matter reckoned as one hundred and fifty words 
of newspaper type. Each stickful is in turn transferred 


to a long metal tray called a galley. As the first proof, 
or impression, is taken of the type while it stands in the 
galley, this proof is called galley proof. The operation of 
taking proof is called pulling proof. Corrections are made 
by revising the type matter as it stands in the galley. The 
type with which the hand compositor works is distributed 
by characters in the various compartments of a case, or 
flat tray. The sections, or boxes, vary in size according 
to the relative number of types stored in them and they 
are unlabeled for they are arranged in the same way in 
all cases and the printer learns their position just as a 
typist learns his keyboard. It is not necessary for the 
printer to look at the type, for the position of its box 
tells him what letter it is and the nick in its shank indicates 
the bottom of the letter. Capitals are laid out in one case 
and small letters in another; since the first is ordinarily 
placed above the latter, it is called the upper case hence 
capitals and small letters are called upper case and lower 
case letters respectively. Each case contains a font of 
type, that is, a complete assortment of a certain size and 
style of type, including some 275 different characters and 
a definite number of each character. A complete font in- 
cludes Roman small letters, small capitals, capitals, figures, 
punctuation points, and accented letters, italic small let- 
ters, capitals, figures, points, and accents, fractions, com- 
mercial signs, and "peculiars' 1 which include marks of 
reference, braces, dashes, leaders, spaces, and quads. A 
Kgatwe is a combination of letters on one shank, such 
as ff, fi, ft, ffi, ffl, ft, &, & Logotypes are entire words 
cast on one shank not extensively used at present. The 
number of types of each character in a font is determined 
on the basis of a definite scheme, corresponding to the 

TYPE 277 

relative frequency of various letters in ordinary read- 
ing matter. A size of the font may tfius be designated by 
the number of letters A in it. When a foundry catalogue 
lists a certain type as "igA $1.20, 36a $1.30, $2.50," the 
printer knows that the font will contain nineteen A types, 
thirty-six a types, and other characters in proportion. 

The manuscript which the printer follows in setting 
.type is called copy, and each piece of copy as he receives 
it is a take. The copy indicates not only the content but 
the style and face of type to be used and other specifica- 
tions. After the pressmen or stereotypers have? used the 
type, the printer must distribute it among the proper 
boxes of the proper cases. Type purchased, cast, or 
arranged in letter groups ready for the cases is called 
sorts. If at any time in the process of composing or 
making up the type becomes mixed, the result is pi. Dis- 
carded and broken type is thrown into the hell-box to be 
melted up. Offices which have .type-casting machines 
throw all type of 12-point or less into the hell-box to 
save distributing it. If in distributing the printer mixes 
the type of various cases so that many wrong-face letters 
appear in proof, the result is called dirty case. 


All copy intended for a printer must contain certain 
marks to indicate the type to be used and the manner 
in which it is to be set. These marks are usually written 
on the upper left-hand corner of the first page and in- 
closed in a circle to indicate that they are not to be set up. 
As the marks usually refer only to the body of the copy, 
separate marks must indicate the style of the headings. 


When all the headings are alike, one mark opposite the 
first or at the top of the page suffices, but any variation 
in heading type must be indicated by other marks, in 
circles, in the margin of the copy beside the heading 

Complete type specifications on any manuscript include 
name, style, and size of type to be used; length of lines; 
and general arrangement of paragraphs and lines. Thus 
a piece of copy might be marked : "8-point Bodoni Script, 
15 ems, solid, indent paragraphs 2 ems." If the printer 
has only one style of body type, as is frequently the case, 
"7-point Roman, 13 ems, leaded, indent paragraph I em." 
If a special lo-point on 12-point body is desired "10/12 
Roman, 21 ems, solid, hanging indention I em." 

In a newspaper office it is not usually necessary to 
mark all copy. The standard column width, usually 13 
ems, will be used unless otherwise specified. If the news- 
paper's ordinary body type is 8-point Roman, the com- 
positor will use that unless directed to use something 
else. Special display is all that the newspaper desk man 
marks specially but he must mark it in the language of 
the printer. Thus space between the lines is specified by 
marking "lead" or "double-lead" ; heavier type is marked 
"bold face," or "Bl. face," or "all caps," or "Sm. caps"; 
two-column lines are secured by marking "double-mea- 
sure, 12-pt. bold caps"; other display may be called for* 
by "hanging indention, i em," or "center n ems"; a 
frame around the type body is specified as a "Box." 

More careful specification is required in the marking 
of heading type. A type might be marked "i2-pt. Caslon 
Bold Condensed, centered," or "i4-pt. Light De Vinne 
Extended, all caps, flush at left" In the newspaper of* 

TYPE 279 

fice, the necessity of specifying for headings is saved by 
the use of numbers for standard headlines. The com- 
posing room and editorial office both have a schedule 
containing models of the newspaper's common head- 
lines, their numbers, and the type and arrangement. 
When the desk man marks a headline "No. 8," the printer, 
by referring to his schedule, knows at once the kind and 
size of type to be used. 

The best way to learn type and its specification is to 
obtain the catalogue of a large type foundry and study the 
faces and names. Printers know their type by the names 
given by the founders, and each type case is indexed witK 
the name of the type within it. But, since no office has 
in stock all the types listed in the catalogue, it is useless to 
specify a special face without first investigating the styles 
in the printer's cases. 


Display available in linotype matter is : Box (made of 
rules); star-box; white margin (formed by indenting 
each line i em on each side); leaded or double-leaded; 
double-measure (two-column lines); half-measure; 
hanging indention (all lines except first indented) ; bold 
face or italic (depending on machine) ; all caps; caps and 
small caps ; larger body type. 

Suitable column widths for various sizes of type are 
the following: 

5-point type 10 to 14 ems pica wide 

5^-point type 10 to 1 6 ems pica wide 

6-point type 12 to 18 ems pica wide 

8-point type 12 to 26 ems pica wide 

lo-point type 18 to 36 ems pica wide 


Number of lines of type per inch in various common 
sizes, solid or leaded, are: 

Type Size Set Solid 2-Point Leaded 

5-pojnt ............. 14 lines plus ............. 10 lines 

6-point .......... ... 12 lines ....... . ......... 9 lines 

7-point ............. 10 lines plus ............. 8 lines 

8-pojnt ............. o lines .................. 7 lines plus 

g-pojnt ............. 8 lines ................. 6 lines plus 

xo-point ............. 7 lines plus ............. 6 lines 

I2~point ............. 6 lines ................. 5 lines plus 

Approximate number of words per square inch in 
various sizes, solid or leaded, is : 

Type Size Set Solid 2-Point Leaded 

5-point .................... 69 .................... 59 

6-point .................... 47 .............. ...... 34 

8-pojnt .................... 32 .................... 23 

lO-point ............ .. ....... 21 .................... 16 

Approximate number of words per newspaper line 
ems pica) in various type: 

S^-point type .................................. 9% words 

6-point type .................................... 8 words 

8-point type .................................... 7 words 

xo-point type .................................... 6 words 

13-point type .................................... 4% words 


1. Make a thorough study of type its groups, families, series, 
and sizes, in a type catalogue both founder's and composing ma- 
chine type. 

2. Practice identifying type faces and sizes in newspapers 
and magazines. Learn the names of typographical symbols found. 

3. Memorize and practice using old names of type sizes. 

4. Analyze the typography of a particular newspaper. 

5. Visit printing offices and study machines and materials. 

6. Work problems in estimating type matter for various 
spaces, including column widths, number of lines per page, etc. 
Master the point system and its use and the use of ems pica. 

TYPE 281 

7. Practice writing type specifications for various kinds of 
matter found in newspapers and magazines* 

8. Plan type pages and layouts, drawing up diagrams, with 
complete specifications. 

9. If printing equipment is available, students should set 
up the matter they have designed. 

10. This chapter may well be taken up in connection with 



BECAUSE newspaper development has been largely made 
possible by the invention of labor- and time-saving de- 
vices for the printer and because no desk man can intelli- 
gently direct a printer unless he understands the processes 
by which written copy is quickly reproduced in thousands 
of printed papers by the mechanical staff, this chapter is 
devoted to explaining the machines and processes that 
are in common use in modern newspaper plants. No at- 
tempt will be made to explain the mere mechanical aspects 
of the machines ; that is the concern cf the inventor and 
the repair man. It is the principle behind the various 
mechanical processes that the desk man needs to know, 
as well as the possibilities in speed and output. To under- 
stand these principles it is more important to know the 
historical development of any machine, the various steps 
which led to its invention and the problems involved, 
than to be able to identify each lever and gear in the latest 
model. It is one thing to stand bewildered beside a 
machine and hear the operator explaining that the 
matrices are no good and the what-you-call-it lever is 
worn ; it is a more valuable thing to know what the ma- 
chine does and in general how it operates. 

Five Branches of Invention 

There are five branches of mechanical invention that 
make the modern newspaper possible, (i) One is 



mechanical type composition. Until inventors worked 
out machines that would do the work of the hand type- 
setter, all newspapers were greatly limited in size and 
speed of production. Until a machine was produced that 
could compose thirty to forty words a minute, every 
office was kept down to the comparatively slow pace of 
the hand compositor. (2) Another great branch has 
been the development of the rotary printing press with 
its increased speed and size of output. (3) Between 
these two processes is the invention of stereotyping which 
made the rotary press possible, and (4) electrotyping, a 
finer modification of it. (5) An important subsidiary 
process is that of photographic engraving, a process which 
has brought illustrations within the reach of every news- 
paper. Without these five processes, the modern news- 
paper with its many interesting illustrated pages, its vast 
circulation, and its multiple editions would be impossible. 


To understand the mechanical substitute for the hand 
compositor, it is necessary to understand the basic prin- 
ciples of type making, for the machine that does the "type* 
sticker's" work is a type maker, rather than a typesetter. 
No composing machine in common use at the present time 
handles or sets ready-made type; every one makes new 
type for every word it composes. To understand its 
principle, therefore, it is necessary to know the steps 
which led to the development of the type-making machine. 

There is nothing new in this modern custom of making 
type in the printing office. All printers made their own 
type until about the middle of the sixteenth century 
but they made it by hand. Not until about 1550 did 


founding become a separate trade. One of the first type 
founders in England was Joseph Moxon, who established 
a foundry in 1659. Another was William Caslon of the 
next century. Binney and Ronaldson were among the 
first type makers in America, for the trade was not intro- 
duced on this continent until late in the eighteenth cen- 
tury. All of these type makers, who established the faces 
and fonts that we know today, made type by hand for it 
was not until the middle of the past century that machin- 
ery was invented to aid their work. The first successful 
type-making machine and the progenitor of the machines 
now in use was invented by an American, David Bruce, 
in 1838. 

The Making of Type 

Since the beginning of type making in 1450, the pro- 
cess has been one of casting, of forcing molten metal into 
a mold. For every individual letter and character the type 
founder must have a separate mold, and each piece of type 
must be cast separately. The mold must be small and 
deep, with the letter cut in bas-relief in one end. That is 
the basic principle of all type founding, whether by ma- 
chine or hand, and of the mechanical composing machines. 

Since the shanks of various letters are alike in general 
shape and size, the part of the mold that must be changed 
for different letters is the bas-relief of the character 
the matrix, as it is called. Until very recently, the making 
of this matrix was done by hand. The first operation 
was to cut a counter-punch a piece of steel with the 
letter carved in relief on one end. This was done by 
marking the outlines of the letter on the steel and cutting 
away the metal around the letter; the counter-punch is 


an exact steel duplicate of the finished type. The next 
step was to drive this counter-punch into a piece of soft 
steel to make a bas-relief of the letter a punch, as the 
type founders call it. When this bas-relief has been 
smoothed and finished, it is the matrix of the type mold. 
Every step in this process must be repeated for each of 
the 275 letters and characters in the font to provide a 
matrix for each letter. The first punch-cutting machine 
was invented about 1885. Much of the matrix making 
is now done with this machine or by electrolysis, by plat- 
ing the counter-punch with copper, peeling off the copper 
film and backing it up with soft metal to form a matrix. 

The mold of which the matrix forms one end consists 
of two blocks of steel with a square groove in the side of 
each so that the two when put together form a rectangular 
casting box. As some letters are wider than others, the 
mold must vary in the direction of the set-width. In the 
old process of casting type by hand, the workman fitted 
a matrix in one end of a type mold of proper size and 
then with a spoon poured it full of molten metal. To 
drive the metal firmly into the matrix he gave the mold a 
vigorous upward shake as he poured the metal. Each type 
required a repetition of this process. The type was then 
dressed down for the removal of superfluous metal, espe- 
cially the jet at the open end of the mold, a groove was 
cut in the base so that it would stand firmly on its feet, 
and a nick was cut in one side to guide the printer in 
setting it. 

Type-Casting Machines 

The type-making machines of today do only the casting 
part of the process. Their molds and matrices are pre- 


viously made by a punch-cutting process as described 
above. By the use of a plunger in a pot of molten metal, 
they automatically do the work of the spoon and the shake 
employed by the hand type caster. Most of them also trim 
and finish the type. Their advantage is speed ; they cast 
type fifteen or twenty times as fast as a hand-workman 
from 3,000 to 10,000 types an hour and turn out a better 
product. But these machines, while they are the fathers 
of the composing machine and are used in some news- 
paper offices to cast "sorts" for the type cases, can do no 
more than continue casting the same letter over again 
until the matrix is changed. To convert them into com- 
posing machines, we need to equip them with some means 
for changing matrices automatically so that they will cast 
any letter as it is needed, and set it in its proper place in a 
galley. Then we shall have a typecasting and composing 
machine that will do the work of the hand compositor. 

Type-Setting Machines 

Long before any attempt was made to remodel the type 
caster for use as a composing machine, inventors tried 
to solve the problem of mechanical composition by design- 
ing a machine to set ready-made type by machinery. At 
first sight, it would not seem difficult to work out a 
machine with a series of grooves or boxes to hold the 
various letters and a keyboard with wires or levers ar- 
ranged to release the proper types and allow them to slide 
down into a galley in proper sequence. But there were 
two obstacles to be overcome. One was the justification 
of the line the filling in of space between words to make 
all the lines the same length. The other was the redistri- 
bution of type. The typesetting machine was of little 


value unless it did away with the slow process of dis- 
tributing type. On these obstacles the idea of mechanical 
typesetting broke. As early as 1822 typesetting machines 
were patented; the first practical one was brought out in 
1853 but it required hand justification; another in 1870 
solved the distribution problem but did not justify. Al- 
though practically abandoned today, these mechanical 
typesetters did good service in newspaper work during 
the middle of the past century Their inability to dis- 
tribute type printers made up for by melting up the type 
as fast as it was used and casting new ready-sorted type 
on a rotary type-casting machine. The highest develop- 
ment of the mechanical typesetter is the unitype which is 
used to some extent today ; it distributes type automatic- 
ally but requires hand justifying. About 1890 a machine 
was invented which set, justified, and redistributed type 
but it was too costly for practical use. It is probably for- 
tunate, however, that these machines failed, for their 
failure brought the development of the type-casting and 
composing machine with its perpetually new type and 
other advantages. 

Type-Casting and Composing Machines. The problem 
involved in remodeling the type-casting machine into a 
mechanical compositor, as indicated above, consisted in 
devising some way to fit a different matrix into the casting 
box as each letter is needed and to set the type in the gal- 
ley. The problem has been solved in a number of different 
ways in various machines but only two are used to any 
great extent in the newspaper office the linotype and the 
monotype. An explanation of the principles incorporated 
in these machines will illustrate the workings of the others. 
These two machines must not, however, be confused with 


the type-casting machines which many newspapers have 
installed to cast "sorts" for the cases. The type casters, 
which are really the machines of the type foundry, do not 
change matrices in response to the operation of keys and 
do not set the type that thy cast. 

The Linotype Machine 

The linotype machine derives its name from the fact 
that its inventor solved the problem of casting, setting, 
and justifying type by casting an entire line of type in a 
single piece. The output of the machine is not a series of 
separate pieces of type, but a slug which has on its edge 
the faces of the various letters that make up a single line 
of type. It is as if the printer had set up the various 
pieces of type in a line and fused them into a single piece 
of metal. It operates by means of a line of previously 
assembled and justified matrices. 

Its inventor, Ottmar Mergenthaler, began work on the 
machine about 1876 and put it into commercial use in 
1886. Now it is used by thousands of newspapers, many 
book publishers, and other printing firms. The original 
machine has been developed and improved by many suc- 
cessive patents, but its basic principle has remained un- 
changed. The machine is operated by a keyboard, very 
similar to the keyboard of a typewriter, electric or other 
power is required to operate it, and a gas flame keeps its 
pot of type metal in molten condition. 

The basic idea of the Mergenthaler machine is to 
bring a series of type matrices, corresponding to the 
various letters required by the printer, into line to form 
a composite matrix for a mold that casts a bar of metal 
just the size of a line of type. Its operation involves 


(i) the assembling of the matrices, (2) the pouring of 
the molten metal, and (3) the redistribution of the mat- 
rices for later use. All of this, including the justifying 
of the line, is done automatically, as the operator presses 
the keys, and the finished line-slugs are deposited in a 
tray in proper order. 

The type matrix of the linotype is a flat piece of brass 
about ij^ inches long and ^ inch wide. One end is 
cut away in a triangular notch with grooves and nicks to 
guide the distributor. The letter mold, or matrix proper, 
is on one edge of the matrix. The matrices, of which 
there are a number for each character on the keyboard, 
are stored in a magazine at the top of the machine. 
Separate channels are provided for the matrices of the 
various letters with gates operated by the keyboard, so 
that when the operator presses a key the corresponding 
matrix slides out of the magazine, down a channel in 
front of the machine, and takes its place in a line beside 
the keyboard. As successive matrices reach the line, they 
hang side by side with their type molds in a horizontal 
line on one side. At the end of each line, the operator 
moves a lever and the machine does the rest ; meanwhile 
the operator is composing the next line. 

After the operator throws the lever, the line of matrices 
which constitute one line are automatically moved away 
to the left to take their place in front of a horizontal 
casting box located in a large wheel. The casting box 
is just the size of a line-slug and open at front and back; 
it is really just a horizontal slit in the solid wheel. When 
they reach the casting box, the line of matrices with their 
separate type molds form its front surface. From a pot 
behind the wheel, molten metal is forced into the casting 


box by a plunger, in sufficient quantity to fill the mold. 
The metal cools and hardens as the wheel containing the 
casting box slowly revolves over a knife to trim the bot- 
tom of the slug, and the finished line-slug is pushed out 
into a galley at the end of a quarter revolution. Mean- 
while a long arm reaching over from the back of the 
machine has carried the line of matrices to the top of 
the magazine and deposited them in an automatic dis- 
tributor. They hang on the distributor rod by the four- 
teen nicks in the V-shaped notch at the end of each matrix 
and are moved along the rod above the magazine by a 
slowly revolving screw. Each matrix has a separate 
combination of nicks fitting in certain grooves in the 
distributor rod, and when it reaches its place a break in 
certain grooves allows it to drop from the distributor 
and slide into the proper compartment in the magazine, 
ready to be used again in a later line. 

Line justification is accomplished by wedges between 
the matrices. Whenever the operator strikes the space 
bar in the keyboard, a long, thin wedge moves into the 
line and hangs loosely between the matrices that com- 
pose the words on each side. As the operator throws 
the lever at the end of the line, the wedges are automati- 
cally driven down so as to take up extra space and crowd 
the matrices closely together. The line is thus filled out 
with equal spaces between the words before the slug is 
cast The justifying wedges are not returned to the 
magazine but hang in line beside it ready to drop into 

All operations of the machine are automatic. The 
operator simply keeps the motor running and the metal 
hot, presses the proper keys, and throws the lever at the 


end of each line. A power-driven belt is also used to 
bring the matrices down from the magazine so that only 
a slight touch on the key is required. While the operator 
is setting one line, another is in the casting box and the 
matrices of another are" being distributed in the magazine. 
If he presses the wrong key or makes any other mistake, 
he can rectify it by picking out the matrix or rearranging 
all the matrices of the line as they hang beside the key- 
board. Once the line is cast, however, he must reset the 
line and make a new slug to rectify an error; the old slug 
he puts back into the melting pot. In the same way, all 
proof corrections, however slight, must be made by set- 
ting new lines to take the place of faulty lines. 

Since all the matrices in the machine's magazine are 
for the same size and face of type, it is quite evident that 
the machine in its simplest form is limited to one font. 
Bold-face type of the same font is provided for by the 
use of matrices with two molds and a device to bring 
the proper mold into use. But the two faces of the same 
font are as great a variety as can be set with one maga- 
zine. This inconvenience has been overcome by the de- 
velopment of machines with interchangeable or multiple 
magazines. Linotypes are now built with two, three, or 
four magazines and corresponding range of variety; in 
others the magazines are interchangeable so that the 
operator can change from 7-point to 8-point by removing 
one magazine and slipping another into its place. In this 
way the machine has been developed until it is now able 
to set almost any face or size of type in common use; 
recently machines have been brought out which set type 
large enough for newspaper headlines or irregular slugs 
for use in display advertising. 


Besides its speed about 8,000 ems per hour or 35 
words per minute and the fact that only one operator is 
required to run it, the linotype has certain other advan- 
tages and disadvantages. The line-of-type idea is a decided 
advantage in newspaper work because linerslugs are easier 
to handle than individual pieces of type and facilitate 
rapid make-up. On the other hand, the fact that new lines 
must be cast to rectify errors makes proof revision of 
linotype work rather difficult and costly. This is offset, 
however, by the fact that every line is made of absolutely 
new type and the type is cast only as needed. A few bars 
of type metal piled in a corner take the place of the ex- 
tensive type cases of former days. After the slugs have 
been used for printing, they are thrown back into the melt- 
ing pot and transformed into new lines. Age and wear 
in the machine result in bad alignment and hair-lines 
between letters because the brass matrices, becoming 
slightly worn, do not fit sufficiently close together to keep 
molten metal from being forced between them to form 
ridges that show up as minute lines in print. The lino- 
type machine costs about $3,500, and a new set of matrices 
costs about $75. The linotype equipment of a large news- 
paper, including from ten to fifty machines, involves a 
considerable investment. 

The Monotype Machine 

The Lanston monotype is selected for study in this con- 
nection because it represents an entirely different principle 
of mechanical composition and is coming into extensive 
use in American printing offices. For reasons to be 
pointed out later, it finds little use in newspaper offices 
but is used by many magazine and book publishers. It is 


lan American machine and was put into commercial use 
about 1899. 

The characteristic feature of the monotype is that it 
casts a separate piece of type for each letter and sets up 
the type in a galley, justified ready for use. It is the 
ultimate development of the basic idea of the casting 
machine as pointed out above, since it accomplishes the 
necessary change of matrix in the type mold automatically. 
Another characteristic feature of the monotype is that it 
consists of two separate machines a keyboard and a type 
caster which may be operated at different times and in 
different places. The output of the keyboard is a per- 
forated paper roll, like a player-piano roll, which is later 
used to guide the operation of the type caster in making 
and setting type to correspond with the copy. 

To set up copy on the monotype, the operator manipu- 
lates the keys of a large keyboard, much like the keyboard 
of a typewriter, but, instead of printing the words on a 
sheet of paper, the keyboard simply punches holes in a 
roll of paper about five inches wide. Compressed air 
supplies the power to revolve the roll and transmit the 
pressure of the keys. Each letter, as its key is pressed, is 
represented by two small holes in the paper roll; as will 
be seen later, the two holes supply motion in two direc- 
tions to the matrix-grid of the type caster. Each suc- 
ceeding pair of holes is below the preceding pair on the 
roll. The keys on the right-hand bottom rows punch 
only one hole each, but all the others punch two; 225 
variations are possible. 

Justification is accomplished by another perforation at 
the end of the line to regulate the size of spaces between 
words. When the operator nears the end of a line, the 


fact is indicated by a bell and a cylindrical scale above 
the keyboard which revolves as the composition pro- 
gresses. When he has set enough words to fill the line, 
the scale tells him what justifying keys to strike it has 
kept account of the number of spaces between words and 
the total amount of space left to be divided. The scale 
is in the form of two numbers and justification requires 
the pressure of two keys in the two rows of red keys 
across the top of the keyboard one key in each row to 
correspond with the two numbers indicated on the scale. 
The resulting perforation sets a uniform width for all the 
spaces cast in that line. The justification holes come after 
the letter holes of the line, on the roll, but they precede 
the line in the type caster for the roll runs backward in 
the second machine. 

The monotype keyboard may be placed in a quiet office 
far from the composing room and operated by a stenog- 
rapher. Its paper rolls may be stored away for any length 
of time, may be used as many times as desired, or may 
be kept by the author as a duplicate of his work to save 
composition in later editions. One keyboard may supply 
rolls for several type casters or, as is more often the case, 
several keyboards may be used to keep one type caster 

The type caster is like the type-making machines used 
by the type founders, except that instead of one letter- 
matrix, it has many, arranged to be brought into position 
in the type mold automatically as they are needed. In 
the type caster there is a separate matrix for each letter 
and character in the font, all of uniform size and fitted 
together in one flat matrix-grid. This is a block of metal 
about four inches square and one inch thick, ruled in 225 


small squares like a miniature checkerboard with a letter 
mold in each square. When the machine is in operation, 
this matrix-grid shuttles about above a stationary casting 
box so that now one letter, now another, forms the end 
of the type mold. As the grid moves about, the mold 
automatically changes size to provide for the varying set- 
width of the shanks of different letters. Behind the mold 
is a pot of molten metal with a plunger that forces a jet 
of metal into the casting box and fills the mold for each 
successive letter. Water circulating through holes in the 
casting box hardens the metal instantly, and the type is 
pushed out of the mold and into line in a galley. As each 
line is filled it is pushed down in the galley to make room 
for the next. 

The shuttling of the matrix-grid is guided by the per- 
forated roll made by the keyboard. The grid has motion 
in two directions forward and backward, to right and 
left. One of the pair of holes in the roll regulates the 
first motion, the other controls the second. The move- 
ment in one direction, by the movement of a metal wedge 
in the side of the casting box changes the size of the mold 
to suit the letter. The machine is operated by compressed 
air and guided by air escaping from small tubes through 
the holes of the paper roll just as the player piano is 
guided by air escaping through holes in the music roll. 
As each pair of holes comes over the mouths of the tubes, 
springs give the grid a combined motion in two directions 
and it is stopped by two vertical plungers, actuated by the 
escaping air, at the proper place to bring the desired letter- 
matrix under the mold, the size of the mold is changed, 
molten metal is forced into the mold, and the finished 
type is pushed into the galley. The entire operation is 


done so quickly that the machine casts and sets type at the 
rate of 150 to 1 80 a minute. At the same time, the justi- 
fication holes in the roll adjust the set-width of the spaces 
for each line, so that spaces of the right width are cast 
and set between the words and each line comes out exactly 
even. When not in use in setting composition, the 
type caster may be used to cast "sorts" for the printer's 

As the matter composed by the monotype consists of 
galleys of individual types, rather than line-slugs, errors 
are corrected and proof is revised just as if the matter 
had been set by hand. Once cast and set, the type can be 
removed or changed to any extent desired without recast- 
ing, a case of the same type supplying the needed letters. 
This, added to the fact that each type is new and fresh, 
is a great advantage in some kinds of printing work. It 
is not so convenient for newspaper work, on the other 
hand, as the line-slugs of the linotype, because individual 
pieces of type must be handled with greater care and are 
harder to make up in page form. The fact that monotype 
composition requires two operations and the ribbon runs 
backward in the second makes it difficult to divide copy 
into short takes for rapid handling and lessens the useful- 
ness of the machine in the newspaper office. 

Greater variety of face and size is possible on the mono- 
type than on the most improved linotype. All that need 
be changed to alter face or size is the small matrix-grid 
bearing the type molds. The printer may have in stock 
as many grids as he desires and the change from one to 
another requires but a moment. The matrices, also, do 
not wear and result in disalignment or hair-lines as in the 
linotype. The ribbons are interchangeable and can be 


used to set any face desired; this is accomplished by a 
standardization of set-widths of letters, a change espe- 
cially evident in Old Style faces. The same ribbon may 
be used in setting any desired size of type if the line 
length is changed proportionately. Some of the large 
machines are arranged to perforate two ribbons at once, 
one for small type and narrow measure, the other for 
larger type and long lines. The operator may thus com- 
pose type for a de luxe and a popular edition at the same 
time. The most important mechanical fault that appears 
in monotype work is honeycombed type which results 
from overheating the type metal and consequent bubble- 
holes which may cause the type to break down in the 

Other Composing Machines 

In addition to the linotype and monotype, there are 
several other automatic type-casting machines that are 
used to some extent in the United States. Among them 
is the junior linotype, a machine which casts lines of type 
like the linotype by means of long matrices suspended on 
endless wires encircling the machine. Since the original 
Mergenthaler patents have expired, other machines, in- 
cluding the intertype, the linograph, etc., have been 
brought out on lines similar to the linotype. 

Whatever the machine, its possibilities do not go be- 
yond the work of the hand typesetter ; its output is type 
or slugs set up in long galleys, and subsequent hand make- 
up into page form is necessary just as if the type had 
been set by hand. If the machine casts and sets indi- 
vidual types, they must be handled with as great care as 
hand-set matter; if it casts line-slugs they must be ar- 


ranged and locked up in the form. No machine has been 
devised to take the place of hand work in make-up, and 
every office, no matter how many typesetting machines 
it has, must also have some practical printers to do this 
work. Since the most versatile machine, also, is limited 
in variety of size and face of type, much display in any 
publication must be set by hand in the old-fashioned 


The process of stereotyping is the making of metal 
plates to reproduce the pages of a publication after the 
type has been set, arranged, and locked up in page form. 
For the rotary press, these reproductions must be in the 
form of semicylindrical plates that will fit the rollers of 
the press. That is, the flat-page form with its myriad 
type faces protruding from the top surface must be repro- 
duced in a curved plate with the same type faces on the 
outside surface, as if the flat-page form were bent back- 
ward over a barrel. As high-speed web presses are used 
by all large newspapers, stereotyping is a necessary part of 
the newspaper's mechanical work. 

The problem of stereotyping is to make an impression 
of the page form in some plastic material that can later 
be hardened and used as a mold. Various methods of 
stereotyping differ largely in the kind of material used 
as a mold. The first method, which was invented about 
1802, employed plaster-of-paris. This or clay was used 
in all stereotyping for many years, but it was not entirely 
satisfactory because it could not reproduce engravings 
and was too slow for newspaper work. 


The Papier-mache Matrix 

The papier-mache process, which is the common pro- 
cess of today, was invented in France in 1829. It receives 
its name from the fact that the plastic mold used is a 
sheet of papier-mache made in alternate layers of thick, 
unsized paper and tissue paper, pasted together. The 
mold is called a matrix, or mat (in England, a flong), 
and looks like a sheet of heavy cardboard with a smooth 
surface. When it is moistened it becomes soft enough to 
take a perfect impression of all the individual pieces of 
type as it is pressed into the surface of the page form. 
After it has been baked, it may be used as a mold for 
molten metal. In practical use, the taking of the impres- 
sion and the baking of the mat are done in one operation. 
With the wet mat laid on its surface, the page form is 
run under a heavy roller, then placed in a press and sub- 
jected to heat and pressure at the same time. In about 
four minutes the form is taken from the press and the 
mat is removed, ready baked for use. Every large news- 
paper office has several stereotyping presses, heated by 
steam or electricity, and regulated so that the mat may 
be baked as quickly as possible without melting or crush- 
ing the type of the form. The mat will not only repro- 
duce type and line engravings, but coarse half-tones as 
well. After the baking, any large blank spaces in the mat 
are backed up with small pieces of cardboard to keep them 
from yielding under the weight of the molten metal and 
allowing the spaces to fill so that they "print up" in the 
press. In most offices the raw stereotype mats are made 
by hand, built up of heavy paper and tissue paper rolled 
and pasted together, but recently a rotary flong machine 


has been perfected that makes as many mats in an hour 
as half a dozen men can make in a day. 

Casting the Plates 

The work of taking the type impression and baking 
the mat is only half the process of stereotyping. To 
make a plate from the mat, the stereotyper must place 
the mat in a mold and cast molten metal into it. For 
the curved plates used on web presses, the mat is bent 
forward and placed in a semicylindrical casting box. 
The mat forms the outside surface of the plate mold 
and the casting box supplies the other surfaces. When 
the molten metal has cooled, the result is a semicylindri- 
cal plate with the type faces on the outside surface. This 
plate must then have its edges trimmed and its inside sur- 
face milled or shaved to remove superfluous metal and 
make it fit the press roll. In small offices this process of 
casting and trimming plates is done by hand. Larger 
offices have machines which cast, trim, and cool the plates 
at the rate of three or four a minute. These machines, 
of which the autoplate is the best known, have a melting 
pot as large as a bathtub, two, four, or even more plate 
molds, and automatic shavers and trimmers to cut the 
plate into finished shape. The autoplate combines the 
four operations required in hand casting a slow task 
because the plate must cool before it can be handled and 
accomplishes the same work in three- fourths of a minute. 
Other machines are the autoplate junior and the multi- 
plate. Ordinarily several plates are made from each mat, 
for if the newspaper has several multiple presses, it makes 
perhaps as many as twenty stereotype plates for each page, 
clamps them all on the rolls, and runs all its presses at 


full capacity on the one edition. In that way it prints 
its entire edition of many thousand copies in a very short 
time. Without the process of stereotyping to reproduce 
pages it would need to set up type and make up each 
page many times to secure enough duplicates. For the 
small rolls of duplex presses, page plates are made 'in 
the form of complete cylinders, instead of the usual half- 

Other Uses for Stereotyping 

The production of page plates for rotary presses is not 
the only use made of stereotyping in modern newspaper 
work. Since the process provides a cheap way to pro- 
duce duplicates of type and cuts, it more than anything 
else has made possible the extensive syndicates that supply 
a large part of a newspaper's make-up at less cost than 
that of setting up the material in the office. As a large 
number of plates may be made from one mat, the process 
provides a cheap and convenient way of storing and 
shipping type impression. Through the process, the syn- 
dicate becomes really a cooperative enterprise to divide up 
the cost of setting type and making engravings the 
heaviest item in printing. Once the type is set and the 
mat made in the syndicate office, many stereotype dupli- 
cates can be supplied to newspapers at a fraction of the 
original composition cost, and many newspapers, espe- 
cially small ones, buy much of their reading matter and 
many illustrations in this form. There are a number 
of syndicates that supply not only feature material but 
news as well so that a small newspaper within a few 
hours' express distance from a large city may buy its 
daily telegraph news in this form, thus saving the cost 


of telegraph tolls, writing and editing, as well as type 
composition. The editor who prepares his newspaper 
in this way is said to "edit with a saw," because he re- 
ceives the plates in long galley strips, known as "boiler 
plate," and saws them up to fit his make-up. To save 
shipping expense the plates are cast about one- fourth of 
an inch thick with grooves in the bottom so that they 
may be locked upon a standard base and made "type high." 
The newspaper keeps the thick, heavy metal bases in its 
own office and receives by express only the thin top plates. 

Many newspapers cut shipping expense still further by 
owning a small mold for casting stereotype plates and 
purchasing only the papier-mache mats from the syndi- 
cate. The mat is so light that it may be forwarded by 
mail and when it arrives in the newspaper office only a 
few minutes are required to slip it into the mold and cast 
a plate from it. This is the method ordinarily employed 
by syndicates that supply feature material with illustra- 
tions. If the material is such that the newspaper may 
wish to use it again at some later time, the mat is filed 
away in the office. This is especially true of portraits of 
prominent persons and pictures of places and things that 
repeatedly come into the public eye. The newspaper files 
the portrait mats in its "morgue" of biographical ma* 
terial and thus has a portrait ready for instant use. Since 
certain syndicates now make a specialty of portraits in 
mat form, many newspapers keep their morgues up to 
date by purchasing a regular portrait-mat service. 

Stereotyping has its faults as well as its advantages. 
Because of the possibility of imperfect work in the mak- 
ing of the mat or the plate, stereotyped material does not 
give the clear-cut printing impression of type. It is sel- 


dom therefore used in high-grade printing, such as book 
or magazine work. In the reproduction of half-tone 
engravings, the papier-mache mat is too coarse to repro- 
duce the minute dots of fine-line cuts and therefore re- 
quires the use of very coarse half-tones. But withal, 
stereotyping is a necessary link in the chain of inventions 
that have made possible the modern newspaper. 


Electrotyping is a more costly but finer substitute for 
stereotyping. It is a method of reproducing type and il- 
lustrations by electrolysis. It came into use about 1850 
and is now extensively used in fine printing. The funda- 
mental idea of the process is the same as that of stereo- 
typing to take an impression of type matter and use it 
as a mold for casting plates. But the mold in this case 
is of copper and is made by electrolysis, much like the 
process of silver-plating. 

The type form or cut to be electrotyped is first repro- 
duced in wax by the simple operation of placing the form 
under a sheet of wax and subjecting it to pressure in a 
steam press. The resulting wax mold with the impres- 
sion of the form on its surface is then given a coat of 
graphite, iron filings, and a weak solution of copper sul- 
phate, to make it an electrical conductor. A piece of 
copper imbedded in its corner makes the electrical connec- 
tion. The mold is then suspended in a solution of copper 
sulphate under the action of electric current for an hour 
or two. By electrolysis a thin film of pure copper is de- 
posited uniformly over its surface. When the copper film 
is about 0.005 * nc h thick, the mold is removed from the 


solution and the copper film is peeled from its surface. 
Zinc chloride solution is then brushed over the back of the 
film and sheets of tin foil are laid over it and melted down 
into the film. The copper sheet is then backed up with 
molten lead. The finished plate is slightly over one-eighth 
inch thick and must be mounted on a base to be type-high. 
It is no more nor less than a copper-plated stereotype of 
the original form. The process produces only one electro- 
plate, but the plate is thinner and lighter than the type 
form and has a copper printing surface. 

Electrotyping is commonly used in book publishing 
and to some extent in magazine publishing since it results 
in a very fine printing impression. In book work it is 
especially valuable because the thin electrotype plates may 
be stored away between editions more compactly than 
type forms and save keeping costly type tied up in idle- 
ness. These advantages offset the high cost. Electro- 
typing is used to a large extent in advertising. To insure 
good make-up in their advertisements, many concerns 
prefer to supply ready-made electrotype plates, commonly 
known as "electros," to newspapers and magazines than 
to trust to the type supply and skill of unknown printers. 


All of the mechanical typesetting and stereotyping ma- 
chines would be of little use to the modern newspaper if 
the high-speed perfecting press had not been invented. 
It alone makes possible the tremendous circulation of city 
newspapers; without it daily circulation would be meas- 
ured in thousands rather than tens and hundreds of thou- 
sands for, whatever the circulation, it must be printed in 


an hour or two. The huge mass of machinery called a 
rotary web perfecting press, capable of printing and fold- 
ing 100,000 or more eight-page newspapers an hour, 
seems beyond the understanding of any brain except that 
of a skilled machinist, but its basic principles are easy 
to grasp if one remembers that it is the climax of a 
mechanical development toward a single goal, simple 
enough in itself. The idea of the designer of a multiple 
rotary press is identical with that of the maker of the 
first wooden hand press; both were seeking to build a 
machine to do the same thing at the greatest possible 
speed. The fundamental idea of presswork is (i) to 
spread ink on a type form, (2) to lay a sheet of paper 
over the form, (3) to press the paper firmly upon the 
type so that it will receive an inked imprint, and (4) to 
remove the printed sheet. This is the simple operation 
that a printing press must perform, and every step in its 
development has been toward designing a machine that 
would perform this operation better and at higher speed. 

The Hand Press 

The first printing press, such as that used by Guten- 
berg when he began to print from movable types about 
1450, was the simplest possible solution of the problem 
and continued to be used, with slight modification, for 
three hundred and fifty years, until after 1800. This 
first kind of press was built of wood and consisted of a 
flat bed, on which the type form was placed, and a platen 
above with wooden screw and wheel to press the paper 
into the type. The pressman inked the type with leather 
pelt-balls and laid each sheet of paper on the form by 
hand, but the press was an improvement over the former 


practice of taking an impression with a mallet and a 
block of wood. This first press had little advantage in the 
way of speed over hand imprint, but it furnished a more 
even impression with less care on the part of the press- 
man. The first improvement, which came about 1550, 
was a metal screw and a movable bed, or r ounce, arranged 
to slide on a greased track so that the form could be 
brought out from under the platen for inking. About 
this time some one added to the movable bed a hinged 
tympan with a frisket hinged to it & cloth-covered 
wooden framework which served as a holder to keep the 
paper from flying off the form as the bed was pushed 
into position under the platen. The next step was to 
add a series of levers to the screw to give greater pressure. 
This improvement came in the Blaew press, invented in 
1620 a wooden press capable of turning out 200 to 
350 "pulls" per hour, or about 100 to 150 copies of a 
four-page paper. This was the kind of press used by 
Benjamin Franklin, and its use required nine separate 
hand operations for each impression. The first iron 
hand press was the Stanhope press which was built in 
England in 1798 and had a more complicated system of 
levers to turn the screw. With twelve hand presses of 
this type, operated by twenty-four men, the London 
Times in 1814 got out its edition of 10,000 copies in 
about six hours. In 1816 an American brought out the 
Clymer Columbian press which had no screw, but secured 
pressure through a series of levers. This was supplanted 
in 1822 by the Smith press which used a simple toggle- 
joint in place of the complicated levers. The final de- 
velopment of the hand press came in the Washington 
hand press, which had a simplified toggle-joint and a 


bolted frame to secure greater strength. It has a wind- 
lass to move the bed, an improved tympan and frisket, 
and automatic ink rolls, but it is little faster than the first 
wooden press of 1450. Many a famous American news- 
paper began publication on a Washington hand press, 1 
and many offices* especially engraving plants, now use it 
as a proof press. 

The First Power Presses 

When steam power came into use, press designers 
went to work on power presses, but their first efforts met 
with the obstacles of securing the continuous motion 
that power requires. It was necessary to give the press 
moving parts. Power could be used to draw the bed back 
and forth, but to adapt it to applying pressure on the 
platen at the right time and to handle paper was more 
difficult. The first power press, which was brought out 
in 1810, was merely a modified hand press with a toggle- 
joint operated by a cam to drive the platen down upon 
the paper. In 1814, Koenig's steam press carried the 
modification further and printed 1,000 impressions per 
hour. The idea was further developed in the Treadwell 
and Adams press of the '2o's by making possible feeding 
at both ends. These presses were built mainly of wood 
with a power-operated platen in the center and two 
beds that shuttled in from the two ends. With four men 
to lay on sheets and four more to remove printed sheets, 
such a press printed 4,000 to 5,000 impressions an hour. 

The Cylinder Press 

But in these presses too much time was wasted in the 
raising and lowering of the platen. The next idea de~ 


veloped was the use of a cylindrical platen which rolled 
over the type form. The idea was worked out in various 
ways with a stationary bed or a stationary platen. The 
first press of this kind was the Koenig press of 1813 
which had one large cylinder that made three impres- 
sions for each revolution, stopping after each impression 
for the bed to return. It is to be noted, however, that 
the bed of this press was moved by a rack-and-pinion 
system so satisfactory that it continued in use until very 
recently. In 1814, Koenig built a press with a small con- 
tinuously moving cylinder ; by placing two cylinders side 
by side and transferring the paper from one side to the 
other by means of tapes he made it a perfecting press 
that is, it printed both sides of the paper. Napier's press 
of 1830 brought in smaller cylinders and grippers to 
assist in feeding paper sheets. Before the middle of the 
century, Hoe and Co. had developed various types of 
cylinder presses that are still in use. This is the type of 
press known in American printing offices today as the 
flat bed press. The stop cylinder idea came back in 1852 
in lithographic presses. 

But even this type of press was too slow. Each sheet 
of paper must be fed in by hand, limiting the speed to 
about 2,000 impressions per hour, and the reciprocating 
motion of the bed made useless any attempt to increase 
the speed by the development of automatic feeders. Im- 
provements have brought the cylinder press up to the 
highest speed that can be attained in printing directly from 
type in a flat-page form, but the flat-bed press must be 
fed by a skilled pressman and is too slow for newspaper 


Type Revolving Machines 

To attain greater speed it is obviously necessary to 
eliminate the reciprocal motion of the bed, to substitute 
for the flat bed a cylinder revolving in one direction. 
This requires that the type be placed on the circumference 
of the cylinder a difficult problem but the next step 
in press design was the application of this idea. In 1848, 
the London Times installed a press, called the Applegate 
Machine, which was arranged so that the type form 
could be placed on the curved surface of a cylinder. The 
printing cylinder was $ l /2 feet in diameter and stood 
with a vertical axis; its surface was not an exact curve, 
but was made up of a number of flat surfaces each as 
wide as a column. The type was secured in these flat 
surfaces by V-shaped column rules. Each column there- 
fore presented a flat surface and "overlays" on the im- 
pression cylinder were necessary for perfect imprint. The 
press had eight impression cylinders, grouped about the 
central printing cylinder, and with eight men feeding in 
sheets of paper, it printed 10,000 copies an hour. Only 
one of these presses was contructed because in the mean- 
time there had been built in America, in 1846, the Hoe 
Type revolving machine, which carried out the idea with 
greater perfection. Its type was held on the surface of 
the cylinder by V-shaped rules, but the arrangement was 
such that the flat surfaces were eliminated and the type 
surface was a perfect curve. The first of these Hoe type- 
revolving presses was built for the Philadelphia Public 
Ledger, and had four impression cylinders, giving an 
output of 8,000 sheets an hour printed on one side. Later 
type-revolving presses with as many as ten impression 
cylinders were built* increasing the capacity to 20,000 an 


hour. Several New York dailies used them. But these 
presses were far from the ultimate goal sought, since 
they required one man for each impression cylinder to 
feed in sheets of paper and the highest speed that a 
feeder can attain is about 2,000 sheets an hour. They also 
printed only one side of the sheet at a time. The fact that 
the type was held by columns partly accounts for the 
headline styles of the day vertical display in many one- 
column crosslines, rather than the modern horizontal dis- 
play in banners and spreads. 

Web Paper and Stereotyping 

The problem to be solved then was one of feeding the 
press and its solution was difficult as long as individual 
sheets of paper had to be used. In 1861, however, im- 
proved machines in the paper mills made possible the 
making of paper in continuous rolls and the development 
of stereotyping offered a substitute for the type-revolving 
idea. Papier-mache stereotyping had been used in book 
work since 1829, but it was not until 1861 that it was 
developed sufficiently to reproduce pages of newspaper 
size. With the curved stereotype plate it was possible to 
substitute small cylinders for the huge type-revolving 
cylinders and to increase the output of the press by adding 
more printing cylinders. As all the motion was continu- 
ous, it was also possible to print from a roll of paper, 
rather than on separate sheets. With the development 
of impression cylinders that lessened the "offset" on the 
back of the paper, it was easy to run the sheet continu- 
ously from one printing roll to another so as to print it 
on both sides. Thus the rotary web perfecting press was 
evolved. Web is the name applied to the roll of paper, 


and perfecting means ''printing on both sides." The only 
problems that remained were those of cutting and folding 
the sheets. 

The Rotary Press 

The first web perfecting press in England was the 
Walter Machine built for the London Times in 1862. It 
had a single long roll to which the paper was returned 
for impression on the reverse side and used cutting 
cylinders to separate the sheets. The newspapers were 
delivered flat and no folding machine was attached to it 
until about 1870. In America, the Bullock web press 
was built in 1865 and had an automatic folder; it re- 
ceived its paper from a roll, but cut it into sheets before 
the paper reached the printing cylinders. Hoe and Com- 
pany improved the cutting and delivery process in 1871 
and developed the speed of this single roll rotary to 18,- 
ooo copies per hour. In 1875, the same company devised 
a rotating folder of greater speed which prepared the 
way for future developments; all later rotaries printed 
the paper before cutting it. The printing press had now 
reached the stage of operating at high speed with no 
hand work and its future development was simply one of 
refining and adding to its mechanism. 

The huge web perfecting press of today, reduced to 
simplest form, consists of a roller with two, four, or 
eight stereotyped page plates on its circumference, a platen 
roller to press the paper against the printing plates, an 
ink roller revolving against the plates, and a continuous 
sheet of paper running between. Such a set of rollers 
prints, of course, only one side of the paper, but the 
paper may run on through a similar set a few feet away 


at the same speed for reverse impression. If each roller 
carries four page plates, four pages are printed on each 
side of the paper as it passes through the two sets of 
rollers, and the result is an eight-page newspaper. If 
each roller carries eight plates, the two sets print sixteen 
pages. Just beyond the printing cylinders is a folding 
machine that automatically cuts and folds the paper into 
separate newspapers as fast as it comes out. Suppose, 
however, that the press is built with two pairs of print- 
ing rollers receiving paper from two webs and feeding 
the two streams of paper into the same folder. The re- 
sult is a multiple press that will print papers of twice as 
many pages or will print twice as many papers of the 
same size. Thus the capacity of the press can be in- 
creased ad infinitum by the addition of more sets of 
printing rolls. For color supplement work, the paper may 
be run through several sets of printing rolls, each print- 
ing a different color on the same page. 

Multiple Rotaries 

The first step in the development of the multiple rotary 
was the Hoe Double Supplement press built in the early 
'80' s. It had one eight-page and one four-page printing 
roll and folded and pasted the various sheets together. In 
1887, the first quadruple press, a combination of two 
simple rotaries, appeared; it printed 48,000 eight-page 
papers per hour. The sextuple was evolved in 1889 by 
the combination of two double supplement presses in one. 
It prints 90,000 four-page papers, or 72,000 eight-page 
papers, or 48,000 twelve-page, or 36,000 sixteen-page, 
or 24,000 twenty-four-page papers an hour. It has three 
double rolls, two folders, and uses about twenty-six miles 


of paper an hour. The next step was the octuple, with 
four eight-page rolls just twice the quadruple and a 
capacity of 96,000 eight-page, or 60,000 twelve-page 
papers an hour. Two of these were then built together 
in the double octuple for color supplement work, with a 
capacity of 96,000 four-page papers in several colors an 
hour. The later double sextuple press has twelve eight- 
plate cylinders and prints 96,000 twelve-page papers in 
black, or 48,000 sixteen-page papers in color each hour. 

These various combinations are built in special forms to 
suit the individual purchaser. There is no standard de- 
sign, but there are three general arrangements of rolls. 

1 i ) The two parts of the quadruple or sextuple may be 
built at right angles to each other with the folder between ; 

(2) the various sets of rollers may be placed in two or 
three decks, one above the other; (3) or they may be 
placed in tandem, one behind the other. One form is 
called the straightline because of the direct course of the 
paper through the press. A more recent form is the 
duplex which uses smaller rollers and cylindrical page 
plates. Because of the large size of the newspaper page, 
the multiple presses are very large affairs, costing many 
thousands of dollars, but they alone make possible the 
tremendous circulations of today. A battery of several 
multiple presses, all printing from duplicate stereotype 
plates, will print the largest newspaper's entire edition in 
a very short time. 

Other Kinds of Presses 

Modified rotary presses are now used to a large extent 
for printing magazines and books. The only difference 
is that each revolution of the printing rollers prints 


thirty-two or sixty-four magazine pages instead of eight 
newspaper pages. There are, of course, many variations 
in the construction of rotary presses and many different 
models ; it is possible here to give only the basic principle. 
Many steps also have been omitted in the description of 
the development of the high-speed press. There are many 
other kinds of presses working on slightly different 
principles that have not been mentioned although they are 
in common use. One of them is the well-known job press 
which is an ingenious machine using a flat form and flat 

Offset Printing 

Offset printing is a kind of press work whereby the 
impression on the paper is made, not directly from the 
surface of the type or printing plate, but by means of a 
transfer of ink from the printing surface to a rubber 
surface and then to the paper. It was invented about 
1884 and further developed by the construction of the 
rotary offset press in 1906. The process is based on an 
accident that occurs every day in the printing office 
when a printer feeding a high-speed job press misses a 
sheet and carelessly allows the press to print on its platen. 
If he does not at once put on a clean platen, the next 
sheet inserted receives an impression on both sides, one 
from the inked type and the other an offset from the ink 
deposited on the platen. An English publisher casually 
noticing that the offset impression was more attractive 
than the direct impression, received the idea which has 
since developed into offset printing. The process is a 
mechanical duplicate of this printing office accident with 
the direct impression omitted and a rubber platen inserted 


in place of the paper or composition platen used in direct 

In the rotary offset press, the roller which carries 
the printing surface prints directly on a roller with a 
smooth rubber surface. The inky image thus deposited 
on the rubber roller then becomes the printing surface 
for a sheet of paper pressed against its surface by a 
second platen. This results in a richer and smoother 
print than is ordinarily obtained by direct impression. 
Further, it furnishes a means of printing from various 
kinds of printing surfaces at the same time. Formerly 
relief, intaglio, and lithographic printing required separate 
presses and different kinds of presswork. But it matters 
not what kind of plate is used in the offset press, the 
rubber roller takes ink from one as well as another. 


As many newspapers are still printed on flat bed presses, 
many newspaper men confront the old problem of "mak- 
ing ready " which has delayed many an edition. As even 
the most perfect type does not give an absolutely level 
surface, it must be brought to a perfect plane after it 
has been placed on the bed of the press. This involves 
pasting pieces of paper, or underlays, under low areas 
of type, or overlays upon the part of the platen that bears 
on the low areas. Especially in the making ready of pages 
containing cuts is the work arduous. Make-ready re- 
quires more time than stereotyping, and careless make- 
ready always results in uneven impression. Some make- 
ready is required on a rotary press, although most of the 
unevenness of the type surface is eliminated when the 
pliable mat is placed in the mold. 



Fudge printing is an interesting phase of web press 
work used by newspapers that make an effort to print 
extras containing up-to-the-minute news. As it takes 
about seven minutes to make a stereotype plate, even 
after a page form has been remade to include later news, 
and several more minutes to place the new plate on the 
press, the newspaper is driven to various mechanical ex- 
pedients to have a sporting extra with a full account of 
the game ready for spectators as they leave the field or a 
market extra containing closing quotations in the street 
as soon as the stock exchange closes. Fudge is one of 
these expedients. A fudge plate is a front-page stereo- 
type plate with a blank space of varying size in the upper 
right corner perhaps there is also a blank space where 
the banner headline should be. As the paper passes over 
the fudge plate this space on the front page receives no 
impression. But further on in its course the paper passes 
over a small roller, called the fudge roll, which contains 
just enough type to fill the blank space. The fudge roll 
has no stereotype plate, but has ingenious clamps to hold 
linotype slugs on its surface. Only a moment is required 
to stop the press and change these slugs, and the news can 
thus be brought up to the minute without delay. To fa- 
cilitate the use of fudge in extras, some newspapers have 
a linotype machine and a telephone or telegraph operator 
in the pressroom. Changes in the banner head to accord 
with the changing news are accomplished in the same way. 
Because the fudge is on a separate roller, also, it can be 
printed in red or green ink to emphasize its content. An- 
other expedient is a type-high blank space in the plate in 
which the final score can be stamped with a steel punch. 



In connection with presswork, the ready-prints used by 
many country newspapers may be mentioned. To save 
composition and presswork, many country editors pur- 
chase their paper from syndicates with one side of each 
sheet already filled with feature articles and other gen- 
eral material The editor prints his local news, adver- 
tisements, and editorials on the other side of the paper, 
and folds it so that the ready-printed material is inside. 
He is saved not only all the composition of the inside 
pages, but one run on the press as well, and the ready- 
print costs him little, if any, more than white paper. Be- 
cause the ready printed pages are always folded inside, 
they are often dubbed "patent insides." 


Until about 1880 the only illustrations available for 
newspaper use were wood-cuts pictures laboriously 
carved by hand in hardwood blocks, chalk plates, and 
similar makeshifts. Wood-cuts were costly because 
they required skilled workmanship, it took much time to 
make one, and the resulting print was not highly artistic. 
Hence few newspapers printed pictures except small stock 
cuts used mainly in advertising. The situation was en- 
tirely changed in the eighties when the photo-engraving 
process came into commercial use. Cheap, attractive il- 
lustrations are now within the reach of any newspaper. 

Line Engravings 

The simplest photo-engraving is the line engraving 
which reproduces an illustration consisting of a white 


background and black lines with shadings of fine black 
lines and no tones or smooth masses of shading a pen 
and ink drawing is a good example. Such a picture has 
only two tones, black and white. The making of such a 
cut is accomplished by a process almost as simple as the 
making of a photograph. The picture that is to be re- 
produced is placed in a strong light and photographed on 
a sensitized glass plate in a large camera. When this 
plate has been developed it is used as a negative to "print" 
the picture on a sheet of zinc or copper whose surface 
has been covered with a sensitized coating, just as a photo- 
graphic print is made on sensitized paper. Treatment 
with ink after a water bath develops the plate, removes 
affected parts of the sensitized coating, and leaves on the 
metal plate lines and areas of coating corresponding to the 
black lines and areas in the original drawing. After the 
remaining coating has been built up with a coating of 
dragon's blood, a red substance that clings to the sticky 
lines, and hardened, the metal plate is immersed in a nitric 
acid bath which etches, or eats away, the unprotected 
areas and leaves the coated lines untouched. The plate, 
after proper cleaning, thus bears on its surface the ori- 
ginal drawing in relief as clean-cut as if engraved by 
hand. This plate is then a line engraving that may be 
used to print the picture on paper. But it prints only 
black lines without tones. Because it is usually made of 
zinc, it is commonly called a sine etching. 

Half-Tone Engravings 

The half-tone engraving is a modification of the line 
engraving whereby the blackness of the impression is 
broken up into contrasting tones. It is obvious th^t when 


only black ink is used in printing, an unbroken area will 
print nothing but solid black. To produce a gray or a 
lighter tone with black ink, the printing area must be 
broken up into small spots of varying size to shade into 
the white surface of the paper. This is what the half-tone 
process does it breaks up black areas into fine points. 

In principle the half-tone process is based on photo- 
graphic methods similar to those of the line engraving; 
the chief difference lies in the use of a screen to break up 
the solid black areas. When the negative is exposed in 
the camera, a screen is placed in front of the negative to 
break up the light. The screen consists of two clear glass 
plates with fine parallel lines ruled on their surface with a 
diamond or acid; one plate is ruled horizontally and the 
other vertically so that together they make a grating of 
fine cross-lines. The result of the exposure is a negative 
in which the unaffected coating consists of a series of 
small dots. When this negative is used to "print" on a 
sensitized metal plate, the same effect is produced. Etch* 
ing of this plate produces an engraving whose surface is 
made up of hundreds of small points varying in size ac- 
cording to the tones of the original picture. There are of 
course many variations in the practical application of this 
process, but this is its principle in simplest form. For 
ordinary work the half-tone plate is made by stripping 
the film from the negative and laying it on the metal 
plate instead of "printing" its form on a sensitized coat- 

Using the Cuts 

The line engraving is ordinarily made on a zinc plate 
and the largest areas between the lines are routed out 


with a cutting tool to prevent "printing up*' in white 
areas. It is used for printing cartoons, line drawings, 
and all illustrations that consist of black lines. The plate 
is about one- fourth inch thick and is tacked upon a wooden 
block to make it type-high. Its size is governed by the 
distance from the camera's lens in the production of the 

The fineness of the half-tone is regulated by the fine- 
ness of the screen. For newspaper work when stereo- 
typing is necessary, a coarse screen is used, a screen 
with from 60 to 100 lines per inch. This produces an 
engraving with relatively large points on its surface, and 
the black dots that compose its tones are plainly visible on 
the printed page. Such plates are usually made of zinc. 
For finer work, a screen with from 100 to 160 lines 
per inch is used and the points and dots become so 
small that they can hardly be seen. For such engravings 
zinc is too coarse-grained and copper plates must be used. 
Coarse zinc half-tones are used most in newspaper work 
because they are cheaper and the stereotype mat will not 
take an accurate impression if the lines are closer to- 
gether than 60 or 80 lines per inch. The finer copper 
half-tones are used for printing that is not stereotyped. In 
some cases a fine half-tone is used in stereotyped work by 
leaving a hole, or mortise, in the stereotype plate and 
setting the original engraving into it. 


When the original type and cuts are used in the press, 
making ready involves evening up the cuts with overlays 
or underlays to "bring out" the tones. In very fine work 
the pressman may spend several days making ready. In 


stereotyping, an overlay of stiff paper is usually placed on 
the mat over a cut to press the mat firmly into it. A fine 
cut when properly made ready will reproduce with black 
ink the delicate shades of the original photograph. 

Both zinc and copper cuts are mounted and handled 
in the same way. Their cost is based on a price per 
square inch. In newspaper work their size is specified 
in column width for the size of the drawing then deter- 
mines the vertical dimension; in all work in fact only 
one dimension need be given and a cut of almost any 
size may be made from one drawing by relative enlarge- 
ment or reduction. For the best half-tones, clear-cut 
glossy photographs are required; for the line engraving 
a drawing with much contrast is necessary. 

Color Engravings 

Colored pictures are printed by means of a development 
of the photo engraving process requiring a separate line 
engraving or half-tone for each color. Since all colors 
are but combinations of the three primary colors, red, 
yellow, and blue, three plates properly shaded and over- 
lapping in mixed areas, will reproduce all the known colors 
and combinations of colors. There must be a plate that 
contains all the blue areas, a plate containing the red 
areas, and another the yellow. To reproduce the picture 
with these three plates, each must be printed with colored 
ink successively on the same sheet of paper. Often a 
fourth, or black, plate is added to bring out the shading 
and tone. 

The production of the three plates requires three suc- 
cessive repetitions of the photographic process through 
different colored glass filters. The colored picture is first 


photographed through a filter which excludes all but red 
rays and the red components of mixed rays and produces 
a negative of the red areas. This process is carried 
through to completion and a corresponding "red" plate 
is made. Then the process is repeated for the "blue" 
plate, then for the "yellow" plate, and finally without a 
filter for the "black" plate. The four cuts must then be 
mounted on separate bases and carefully trimmed so that 
their separate impressions coincide, or register, in print- 
ing. The printer then places his yellow plate in the press 
and prints with yellow ink; then he substitutes the red 
plate and runs the same pages through the press again 
printing with red ink and so on. The result of the four 
impressions is a colored reproduction of the original 
colored picture. It is to be noted, however, that the filter 
used is not of the same color as the ink to be used but a 
combination of its complementary colors ; the filter used 
in making the "blue" plate is therefore orange. In mak- 
ing colored half-tones, also, the print is not made by 
stripping the film from the negative but by direct photo- 
graphic printing to insure perfect register of the minute 
dots which constitute the half-tone surface. 

The engravings may be either line engravings or half- 
tones, although the latter are usually used. Newspaper 
color work, the Sunday supplement, is frequently done 
with etchings printed on a rotary press ; the various color 
plates are mounted on different cylinders and the web 
runs through them in succession. For finer work, how- 
ever, half-tones are used. The finest work requires four 
color plates, as explained above, but much color printing 
is done with three, or even two, plates. The absence of 
one of the primary colors is compensated by the use of 


simpler color mixtures that approximate the tones of the 
original picture. Color plates are very costly because 
of the great skill and care required in the making; the 
four plates for a picture of magazine page size may cost 
as much as one hundred and fifty dollars. 

The Ben Day Process 

The Ben Day process is a method of imitating half- 
tone work in the background of line etchings. By means 
of a special film through which ink is rubbed on the 
drawings or on the metal plate, before it is etched, a 
stippled effect of uniform black dots or fine rulings is 
produced in the shaded areas without the use of a screen 
in the camera. It finds its commonest use in the making 
of sketches and detailed drawings for newspaper and 
other publications and is valuable because it saves the 
draughtsman the work of shading dark portions of his 
drawing with a pen. The artist merely draws the out- 
lines of his sketch and specifies Ben Day shading in cer- 
tain areas. There are many varieties of Ben Day stipple 
work and the draughtsman orders them by number from 
the engraver's chart, 


With the invention of the rotary photogravure press 
in 1906, intaglio printing of illustrated supplements has 
come into common use and many American newspapers 
now have such presses. The photogravure is merely the 
reverse of a line engraving, made by a similar photo- 
graphic process with grooves and hollows in place of 
raised lines. Its presswork requires the wiping of the 
plate after it has been filled with ink. When printed on 


a rotary press it is called a rotogravure. In such a case 
the film stripped from the negative is not placed on a flat 
copper plate, but on the surface of a large copper roller 
which constitutes the printing surface after it has been 
etched with acid. One side of the roller passes through 
an ink bath which fills the impressions in the intaglio en- 
graving, the surplus ink is cleaned away with a knife, 
and the ink is lifted out by the paper which passes over 
it. After the picture has been printed, the copper roller 
is turned down in a lathe to remove the engraving. Al- 
though merely a reversed line engraving, the rotogravure 
is given the tones of a photograph by the varying depth 
of the engraving and the use of transparent ink. It has 
been used with greatest success with brown ink which 
gives varying sepia tones. A recent combination of roto- 
gravure and color printing is known as the "coloroto." 

Other Kinds of Engravings 

The subject of illustrative printing is a large one, 
constantly changing and developing. The practical proc- 
esses of today may be divided into four general groups 
on the basis of the kind of plate used: relievo, intaglio, 
lithographic, and collotype. 

Relievo, or relief, printing is the name applied to all 
processes which employ plates whose printing lines and 
areas are raised so as to receive the ink and press it into 
the paper. The group includes all printing from type, 
electrotype plates, stereotype plates, wood engravings, 
half-tone engravings, and line engravings. In each of 
these the printing, or inked, surface is in relief. It is 
the kind of printing in common use in all newspaper, 
publication, and job work. 


Intaglio printing is a designation applied to all proc- 
esses which employ plates whose printing surfaces are 
in bas-relief the lines and surfaces which represent the 
picture are grooves or hollows cut into the plate. In the 
process of printing with intaglio plates, the grooves and 
hollows are filled with ink, the surface of the plate is 
wiped clean, and when the plate is pressed upon the paper 
the ink is transferred to the paper by absorption and 
remains in the form of ridges or raised surfaces. An 
illustration is the engraved visiting card whose ink may 
be felt with the finger. This class of printing includes 
copper and steel-plate engravings, stone engravings, acid 
etchings, aquatint etchings, mezzotint engravings, music 
engraving, photogravures, Rembrandt photogravures, 
Renaissance photogravures, and others. The various 
names designate the material used in the plate and the 
process by which it is engraved. 

Lithographic printing includes all processes which em- 
ploy flat surfaces to which ink is applied directly in the 
form of the design desired and absorbed by the paper 
when the impression is taken. That is, the picture is 
drawn in absorbent ink directly on the surface of a flat 
plate and transferred to paper pressed upon it. The 
work may be done in black or in colors. The commonest 
illustration is the colored lithograph for advertising pur- 
poses. Stone plates were originally used in the process 
but now, for finer work, aluminum, zinc, and other kinds 
of plates are used, and various processes have been de- 
veloped as substitutes for the hand work necessary in 
the old-fashioned stone lithograph. 

Collotype printing is a development of lithographic 
printing in that it employs an unetched surface, but its 


surface is a film of sensitized gelatine which receives ink 
and transfers it to paper. This is the least common of all 
methods of reproducing pictures and is used only for very 
fine work. 

The Newspaper Art Department 

The art department is a common part of most large 
newspaper plants of today. Sometimes it consists of a 
staff photographer with a dark room in the office; some- 
times it includes a number of artists and draughtsmen; 
some newspapers also have facilities for making their own 
engravings. The work of the art department consists in 
making and retouching photographs, drawing decorative 
borders around photographs, making sketches, diagrams, 
maps, and other illustrative or decorative material. One 
kind of work consists in making layouts of pictures 
groups of photographs interwoven with decorative borders 
and sketches. As the photographs must be reproduced 
in half-tones and etchings must be made of the pen work, 
a layout usually consists of several cuts. To make such 
a composite picture, the artist does the pen work, borders 
and sketches, on a large sheet of paper leaving blank 
spaces here and there for the photographs. He then num- 
bers the photographs to correspond with the spaces and 
indicates the size to which the photographs are to be 
reduced. The engraver then makes the separate cuts 
and puts the layout together. Color work is done in 
water color or even oil. Attached to the same department 
are cartoonists and comic artists who provide the news- 
paper's pictorial humor* 



1. Trace out in a daily newspaper and in various magazines 
the work done by various machines and processes discussed 

2. Inspect machines in printing and engraving plants. 

3. Illustrative material may be obtained from companies that 
manufacture these machines. 

4. Engravers will supply illustrations of various kinds of 
cuts, screens, color proofs, etc. 

5. This chapter may well be taken up in connection with 



THE handling of small publications student news- 
papers and magazines, local "boosting" monthlies, asso- 
ciation quarterlies, house organs, propagandist pamphlets, 
and other small periodicals can hardly be considered a 
regular part of the newspaper desk man's work. But 
since a newspaper is always associated with a printing 
office, sometimes a job office, a newspaper man is ex- 
pected by the general public to know all about printing 
and publishing work and to be well fitted to take charge 
of publications. Whenever any body of people deter- 
mines to issue a publication, it instinctively turns to a so- 
called "journalist" for advice or assistance. If there is 
a school of journalism nearby, the first impulse is to ask 
advice of the instructor or one of his students. In col- 
lege circles, most student publications are handled by stu- 
dents of journalism who are studying to be newspaper 
men. Since there seems to be this close relation in the 
public mind between newspaper work and the ability to 
edit any small publication, it is well for the newspaper 
man or journalism student to know something about it. 

This discussion will be by no means a conclusive treat- 
ment of publishing work or a handbook for the pros- 
pective publisher. It is merely a group of convenient 
methods and systems, classified for reference, and the 



readiest answers to some of the problems in small pub- 
lication work. Some of the methods are new ; others are 
as old as printing. They were gleaned from work in 
large magazine offices and from bitter experience with 
small publications. Added to the material in preceding 
chapters, they may suggest a starting point for the in* 
experienced "editor and business manager." Much of 
the discussion is intended especially for the editor or 
teacher-adviser of student publications in college or high 
school, whether they are working with the newspaper or 
magazine form. 


The first step in launching a publication is to design its 
physical make-up. Before the editor approaches a printer 
for terms or issues a call for "copy," he must have a 
definite idea of the size, make-up, general appearance, 
and reading-matter capacity of his publication. Too 
many young editors leave the consideration of these mat- 
ters until they have gone to the printer for terms, and 
the result is that the printer, in order to get down to 
brass tacks, designs the publication for them. It is then 
the printer's publication. If the editor will plan it and 
visualize it in advance, he can make it his own publica- 
tion, and incidentally he will receive better terms and 
treatment from the printer because of the knowledge of 
the job he evidences. 

Cost Considerations 

The style and appearance of the publication must in 
general suit its purpose. It may be modest or bizarre, 


cheap or rich, small or large. These conditions are to 
some extent determined by the money at the editor's dis- 
posal, but in most cases a handsome publication costs no 
more than an ugly one if the editor knows how to make 
the most of his money. Pleasing appearance depends 
upon paper, type, size, and make-up. Of these, paper 
affects the cost most, because paper is usually the largest 
item. But with proper knowledge, the editor may choose 
a paper of moderate cost and make it appear rich by his 
selection of size and typographical make-up. To do this, 
however, he must know paper sizes and the basis on which 
paper is judged. Pleasing typography costs no more, in 
general, than ugly typography if the editor knows how 
to select type and can adjust his selection to the printer's 
stock, knowing whether to call for machine or hand com- 
position. Size has little to do with the cost if the editor 
knows how to utilize paper of standard size with the 
least waste and how to economize on press work, the sec- 
ond largest item in cost. With a clear understanding 
of the purpose of his publication, the editor may obtain 
a pleasing make-up without materially increasing expense. 

The Capacity Problem 

The planning of the publication involves also an esti- 
mate of the amount of reading matter it is to carry. The 
editor should have a fairly clear idea of the number of 
articles and their length before he attempts to design 
make-up. He must know approximately the space that 
must be devoted to advertising and the position of the 
space. That is, he must suit his design to the capacity 
required. Some of the problems he must face are as 
indicated in the following discussions : 


i. Size of Pages 

The Usual Sizes. The general page size is determined 
mainly by the purpose of the publication and the manner 
of its distribution. For some purposes the smaller sizes 
5 x 7J4 or 6 x 9 inches may be chosen. These sizes are 
easy to read, easy to mail, and are the largest sizes in which 
the type-matter may be set in single columns. Larger sizes 
8 x n, 9 x i2 l /2, etc. require double' columns. The 
largest practical size, n x 14, requires three columns. 
Magazines are at present tending toward larger pages, 
about 8^2 x 12, to accommodate more decorative page 
make-up and to enable them to sell advertising space next 
to reading matter. In choosing the page size, the editor 
must consider the weight of his paper, for a larger page 
requires heavier paper. 

Standard Paper Sizes. Exact page size cannot be 
selected until the paper has been chosen, since a variation 
of half an inch may involve a serious waste of paper. 
Book paper is made in standard sizes but it is not always 
possible to get all sizes in the paper chosen. The standard 
sizes are as follows : 

22 x 28 inches 28 x 42 inches 

24 x 38 " 32 x 44 " 

25 x 38 " 36 x 48 " 

26 x 40 " 

After the general page size and kind of paper have 
been selected, the exact page size may be figured from 
the paper size best suited to give the required number of 
pages with the least press work. The exact page size is 
determined by dividing the two dimensions of the white 
sheet by the number of folds, as will be shown later. In* 
figuring these dimensions, the editor should allow for a 


trim about one-fourth inch at the top, bottom, and one 
side of each page after the paper has been folded. A 
good appearance will usually be assured if a standard 
proportion of about 5 to 7J/ is followed. Another rule 
is to make the diagonal of the page twice its width. 
These details the editor can work out with the printer 
when he chooses the paper, if he has a general page size 
in mind, but he should not attempt to decide the size 
of the type body of the page before he knows exactly 
how large his pages are to be. 

2. Number of Pages 

How Press Work Affects Size. The chief considera- 
tion in deciding the number of pages is the number of 
"runs" on the press. Given the page size and the approx- 
imate number of pages desired, it is necessary to figure 
the exact number of pages on the basis of the size of the 
printer's press. To explain, a small booklet is not printed 
page by page on small sheets of paper, but a nwnber of 
pages are made up into one form and printed all at once 
on a large sheet of paper. The paper is then folded and 
trimmed into finished form. For example, a sixteen-page 
publication would be divided into two eight-page forms. 
Eight pages would be printed on one side of the sheet and 
the other eight on the reverse. The operation of printing 
each form is called a "run on the press." And it is the 
number of runs on the press that has much to do with the 
cost of the publication, not because of the time required 
for actual printing, so much as the time consumed in 
making up the forms and making ready on the press. 

Methods of Folding. To understand how press runs 
are reckoned, it is necessary to understand the methods 


of folding that printers employ. Obviously a single leaf 
of paper printed on both sides is the simplest form of 
press work; it carries two pages but cannot be bound into 



a book. The next step is to print two pages on each 
side and fold the sheet once ; the result is called a folio 
it has two leaves or four pages. If the sheet is folded 
twice it is called a quarto; four pages are printed on each 
side and the quarto contains four leaves or eight pages. 
Three foldings gives the octavo, with eight pages on each 
side ; it has eight leaves or sixteen pages. The next step 
is twelve pages on a side, or duodecimo, containing 24 
pages; this is rarely used in modern printing. Above 
duodecimo, the number of pages is indicated thus : i6mo, 
32mo, 641110. Mo or means in each case the number 
of pages on one side of the sheet or the number of leaves 
in the finished bode. A complete table would be as fol- 

Unfolded single sheet i leaf, 2 pages 

folio I fold a leaves, 4 pages 

quarto 2 folds 4 leaves, 8 pages 

octavo 3 folds 8 leaves, 1 6 pages 

i6mo 4 folds 16 leaves, 32 pages 

32010 5 folds 32 leaves, ~ pages 

64010 ' folds 64 leaves, 128 pages 


Reckoning Number of Pages. It will be seen then 
that the number of pages in the booklet must be a mul- 
tiple of four. An odd number of pages is impossible, 
and a number not divisible by four mans a pasted inset 
of one sheet. Beyond this, the question is determined by 
the size of the printer's press. If our pages are so large 
that the press cannot print more than eight at one time, 
our publication must be made in octavo form. That 
means that two runs, the smallest possible number, will 
give sixteen pages. We would hardly select twelve pages, 
for that would require four runs a folio and a quarto, 
ach requiring two runs and the extra press work would 
cost more than the composition of the four pages saved. 
If sixteen are not enough, it is best to enlarge to two 
octavos, or thirty-two pages, for any enlargement re- 
quires two extra runs and we may as well get as many 
pages as possible out of the press work. Our octavo 
publication will then economize press work if its total 
number of pages is some multiple of sixteen 16, 32, 48, 
64, etc. 

Ordinarily, however, if the pages are of fairly small 
size the printer's press will accommodate a 1 6-page form 
and the i6mo is the cheapest size to select. As i6mo car- 
ries 32 pages, the publication's number of pages should 
be some multiple of 32 for greatest economy. When we 
go beyond octavo, however, the number of pages increases 
so fast that composition cost goes ahead of press cost 
and it is economical to increase the number of runs in- 
stead of the number of pages. For instance, 48 pages 
one i6mo and one octavo would be cheaper than 64, 
although four runs are necessary in each case. However 
44 pages would not be cheaper because it would require 


one i6mo, one quarto, and one folio six runs ori the 
press. Forty pages would require one i6mo and one 
quarto, but the quarto run would be a costly waste of 
press work. 

It will be seen therefore that some knowledge on the 
editor's part will go far to save needless press work. 
In brief, it is usually wise to plan the publication in oc- 
tavos multiples of 16 pages or in i6mo, multiples of 
32. Any growth in the publication's size should be in 
octavo at least, for quartos are wasteful. This figuring 
is upset sometimes in a printing office that uses duo- 
decimo forms, which lead to the use of multiples of 12 
pages. The duodecimo, combined with octavo or i6mo, 
gives greater elasticity. Printers sometimes handle 
quartos and octavos by printing the entire eight or six- 
teen pages on both sides of a large sheet and cutting the 
sheet in two. 

The mechanical working out of this press work can 
be learned only in the printing office. The arrangement 
of a 32-page form so that the pages will be in their proper 
places looks to the editor like a complicated task, but the 
practical printer works it out from a chart that is a part 
of his stock in trade. The folding is done by hand or 
by a folding machine. After folding the booklet is 
stitched on a wire stapling machine and the pages are cut 
by trimming off three edges. When the run is more 
than i6mo, it is customary to cut the sheet in two before 
folding so that the paper will not bunch along the folded 
edges. The editor's only part in the proceeding is to in- 
sist that the printer make up the form with care so 
that the margins of the finished pages will be of equal 


3. Paper 

How Paper Is Selected. Paper must be chosen with 
reference to these points: weight, strength and body, 
surface, durability, color, and cost. The weight is 
usually determined on the basis of the size; the larger 
the page, the heavier the paper must be. Heavy paper 
gives the publication a richer appearance but it also in- 
creases the mailing cost sometimes a serious item. In 
choosing weight, the editor must take care to avoid paper 
so light and transparent that black type shows through it. 
Strength and body are almost synonymous with general 
quality; the stronger and more brittle a paper is, the 
better its quality and the greater its cost. Weight has 
little to do with quality for a heavy paper may be too 
soft and flimsy to stand press work and folding. It is 
well to test quality by tearing a corner of the paper or by 
"rattling" it to see how brittle it is. Surface must be 
chosen with reference to typography and illustrations. 
Soft paper prints deeply and hard paper receives only a 
surface impression. The relation of surface to typog- 
raphy will be discussed under Type, but here the kind of 
illustrations must be considered. Zinc engravings print 
well on almost any paper, but half-tones, especially fine 
copper cuts, require a smooth, hard surface. Durability 
is of little importance to the small publisher unless he is 
concerned with a publication that will have future value. 
Color is more important than is generally supposed be- 
cause absolutely white paper is rare. Almost all paper 
is slightly tinted to conceal imperfections. Some papers 
have a slightly bluish tint ; others more of a cream color. 
The choice between them depends upon the kind of cover 
chosen and the effect desired. By specifying ink slightly 


off the black and delicately tinted paper, the editor may 
obtain a pleasing color scheme without additional cost 
The cost is determined by the other considerations, .and, 
if the editor has a clear idea of his publication, he can 
usually find what he wishes in moderately priced papers. 
The editor should ask to see the sample booklets sent out 
by the paper manufacturers and, when unable to choose 
between two kinds, should ask the printer to fold a 
sample sheet of each into the form of the finished publi- 
cation. Paper is retailed by the pound, and the weight 
given in the sample book is the weight of a ream (500 
sheets) of that size. If a sample is marked "25 x 38, 
60 pound," the meaning is that 500 sheets of that size 
weigh 60 pounds. If the same paper is sold in large 
sheets, however, its weight is listed higher ; thus, 25 x 38, 
60 pounds, may be the same paper as 28 x 42, 70 pounds. 

Really to know how to judge paper, however, it is 
necessary to know something of the manufacture of 
paper, what it is made of, how it is made, and the various 
kinds on the market. 

Paper Materials. Paper is made of wood-pulp, wood- 
fiber, rags, or esparto grass. Rag paper is rarely used for 
anything except writing paper, and grass paper is mainly 
used for wrapping and other rough uses. The common 
printing papers are the wood-pulp and wood-fiber, some- 
times called mechanical and chemical pulp. Of these the 
latter is the better because the wood in it is in long shreds 
that knit together and give greater strength it is also 
more costly because the fibers are separated in the pulp by 
chemical, rather than mechanical means. 

How Paper Is Made. The general steps in paper 
making and their effects on the finished product may be 


described briefly. The ingredients in the paper, rags or 
wood, are first chopped into small bits, mixed with water 
or chemicals, beaten, cooked, and reduced to a pulpy semi- 
fluid mass. In hand-made paper, this pulp is spread out 
in sheets on wire screens, but hand-made does not concern 
the small editor. The paper that he will buy is made by 
machinery. The semi-fluid pulp is poured upon a slowly 
moving belt of wire cloth that vibrates meanwhile to 
spread the pulp into an even layer over its surface. If the 
belt vibrates only in one direction, the paper is not so good 
because its fibers all lie in one direction. This quality may 
be discovered by aaattempt to tear the paper first one way 
and then the other. If the top wires in this belt all run 
one way, with some perhaps higher than others, the paper 
receives a series of parallel impressions and is called laid 
paper. A belt woven in the form of a grating, on the 
other hand, produces the mesh appearance seen in wove 

As the wet pulp passes along on the wire belt, it goes 
under a roller, called the dandy roll, which squeezes the 
water out of the pulp. The dandy roll has a wire cloth 
surface and the nature of its weave produces the laid or 
wove effect on the upper side of the paper. It is the 
dandy roll, also, that puts in the watermark by means of 
raised letters or figures on its surface. 

Judging Paper Surface. Surfacing is accomplished by 
means of huge steel rollers, called calenders, through 
which the paper is run. Once through the rollers pro- 
duces machine-finished paper. More rolling produces 
surfaces ranging through calendered to super calendered. 
Each rolling makes the paper harder and smoother. Some 
paper is covered with sizing to fill the pores and keep ink 


from spreading. Other paper is filled, or loaded, with clay 
or some similar substance, to give it smoother surface. 
Other paper is supercoated, and still other paper is 
enameled on one or both sides. Plate paper is that which 
has been subjected to great pressure to produce a smooth 
surface on both sides without filling. Among the unsized 
papers are copperplate and various craft papers. Antique 
paper is a thick, porous paper that has received only light 
calendering, or none at all. The list of surfaces as they 
range from rough to smooth is : antique, egg shell, news 
print, machine-finished, English finish, calendered, sized, 
supercalendered, coated, enameled, plate, etc. Deckle- 
edged is a name applied to paper that has not been 
trimmed but bears the natural rough edge produced by 
the rubber deckles that keep the paper from falling off 
the wire cloth belt. As half-tone engravings require 
smooth paper, it is better to choose for them something at 
least as smooth as calendered paper, on the basis that the 
finer cuts require smoother paper. 

4- Type 

Size of Type Page. The first consideration in the 
matter of typography is the size of the type page 
with reference to the size of the paper page, and it is im- 
possible to determine the size of the type page until after 
the paper has been chosen. Then the type page must be 
designed with regard to uniform margins on all sides. 
It is well to allow generous margins, even if this involves 
sacrifice elsewhere, for they give richer appearance. The 
smallest margin that can be used with success is ft or % 
inch; from that the margin may go up to iJ4 inches with 
good effect. Certain unusual effects are produced by 


unequal margins wider at the bottom and outside than 
at other edges but this treatment requires corresponding 
richness in typography and paper. 

Column Widths. Shall the publication be set in one, 
two, or three columns? This is almost automatically 
decided by the size of body type selected. The extreme 
column width employed in modern printing is about 40 
ems pica, or 6 l / 2 inches and this only with large type 
for longer lines are difficult to read. Therefore if the 
type page is wider than 6 inches it must be divided for 
any type With average body type the maximum line 
length is much shorter. In the case of 7- or 8-point type, 
the best column widths are from 13 to 18 ems pica, 2-1/6 
to 3 inches. With 9-point type, the column may safely 
be 21 ems pica, or 3^2 inches, wide. With 10- or n- 
point, especially when it is leaded, the width may run to 
27 ems, or ^/ 2 inches. On the other hand, the narrowest 
practicable column for any type is 12 ems, or 2 inches; 
the narrowest for Q-point is about 18 ems; the narrowest 
for lo-point is about 21. Columns narrower than these 
require much running over of words from line to line. 
(See tables in Chap. VIII.) 

Page Diagram. The easiest way to figure column 
widths, etc., is to lay out the page in diagram form. First 
cut a sheet of paper to the exact size of the finished page. 
Then with ruler and pencil draw the outlines of the type 
page, allowing proper margins. Lower the top line 
enough to allow for the folio head. The result is an exact 
diagram of the type page and its dimensions can be meas- 
ured off with a ruler. Its width or line length should be 
translated into ems pica for the printer six ems equal one 
inch. Its height may be translated into number of lines 


of type by dividing the height by the number of lines 
per inch of the type selected. For example, if the dia- 
gram shows the type body to be 4 inches wide by 6 
inches high, the length of lines will be 4 (inches) x 6 
(ems per inch) or 24 ems pica. If 12-point type is used, 
the number of lines will be 6 (inches) x 6 (lines of 12- 
point per inch) or 36 lines. If more than one column 
is used, one em should be allowed for column rule be- 
tween. When small type on larger body is used, the 
number of lines must be figured on the body size thus 
there are only six lines of 10/12 type in an inch although 
the type face is only 10/72 inch high. 

Selection of Body Type. Body type must be chosen 
with regard to size, blackness, and style of face. The 
above discussion will indicate the size of type best suited 
to given column widths. In general, however, the best 
sizes for small publication work are 9-, 10-, and rarely 
12-point. For fine work, it is better to adopt a small 
face on a large body, as 9/10 or 10/12, than to use a 
large face. The same effect may be produced by leading 
small type. Blackness of type should be chosen with 
reference to paper selected. Since soft, rough paper re- 
ceives a deeper impression than hard, smooth paper, it is 
best to use fine-cut type on hard paper and blacker type 
on soft paper. Sharp type also goes best with half-tone 
cuts. As regards face, standard Roman type is best suited 
to most publications and easiest to obtain. Pretty effects 
may be obtained by the use of antique, old style, or some 
decorative face, but when an ornamental type is chosen, 
the design of the entire publication must correspond with 
it It is often possible to obtain some modern decorative 
face, such as Bodoni, for example, in all sizes from body 


to display, and the use of the same family throughout 
gives a neat appearance. The final decision will however 
probably be based on the printer's stock and machines. 

Selection of Other Type. Display type must be chosen 
with regard to body type, just as in newspaper make-up; 
headings and titles should match reading type. The use 
of very black titles with light-face body type, or the op- 
posite, ordinarily shows bad taste. The tendency of the 
present day seems to be toward smaller, lighter display 
type, since white space gives as great display as much ink. 
The sizes of type ordinarily selected for titles are 12- to 
36-point. Whether in capitals and small letters, or all 
capitals, depends on the length of the title, but it is well 
to select two or three standard headings to be used for 
various purposes throughout the publication. Unless the 
editor has a natural feeling for typographical display, he 
is wise to select his titles from the same family as his body 
type or from some family of similar cut and decoration. 

With the question of display type goes that of folio 
heads and other details. Folio heads are page headings, 
including page numbers, that are repeated at the top of 
each page. They may be of ordinary type or, better, of 
some lighter face. The capital or small capital of the 
body type makes a good folio head. The editor must also 
decide the kind of rules to be used under and over the 
folio head or the omission of rules. If authors' names 
are to be set at the head of the articles, it is well to set 
them in black-face capitals and small letters of the body 
type. If they are placed at the end of the article, small 
capitals of th6 same type are good. All of these details 
are mentioned because it is well for the editor to decide 
them in advance. 


Kind of Composition. Whether the publication is to 
be machine- or hand-set depends largely on the printer's 
facilities. More faces are available in hand-set work, but 
delay may accompany this advantage. Ordinarily hand- 
set work makes proof correction easier than linotype 
work, for the resetting of line slugs to make revisions 
requires successive proofs until all errors have been elimi- 
nated. Monotype work does away with these difficulties, 
but few job printers have these machines. Before the 
final decision on the matter is made, it is well to see a 
sample of the printer's machine work to judge the age 
and condition of the machine. 

Type Specifications. When all matters of typography 
have been settled, it is well to make up a schedule of the 
various kinds of type and to repeat type specifications in 
every succeeding piece of copy. Specify in each case, not 
only the size and face of type, but the column width ; in 
the margin opposite each title, repeat the size and face to 
be used. Many annoying misunderstandings will be 
avoided if this course is followed. 

5. Illustrations 

The average small publication is limited, in the 
matter of illustrations, to zinc etchings for line draw- 
ings and sketches, and half-tones for reproductions 
of photographs or wash drawings. It is well to use 
copper half-tones and specify a screen of about 150 lines 
per inch. In specifying sizes it is necessary to give only 
one dimension, for the other is determined by the size of 
the picture and the usual specification is width since the 
cuts must accord with column widths employed. It is 
well also to work out a page design before ordering cuts. 


Engravers charge by the square inch for these cuts on a 
definite schedule that may be obtained from the nearest 
house. To insure the best cuts, drawings should be in 
black ink on white paper and photographs should be clear- 
cut, glossy prints. Obviously the size of the drawing or 
photograph has little to do with the size of the cut since 
it may be reduced or enlarged at will. When the cuts 
come from the engraver it is well to examine the en- 
graver's proofs carefully and to insist that the printer use 
great care in making ready on the press (see Chap. V). 

6. The Cover 

A cover for the publication more than pays for 
itself in the improvement of appearance that it gives. 
When the outside page is printed on the same sheet 
and folded with the rest of the pages, manifold 
troubles arise. Unless the folding is absolutely accurate 
the printed matter is seldom centered perfectly on the 
page, and unless inking is perfect there is a constant varia- 
tion in impression. If the cover must be dispensed with, 
some of these difficulties may be avoided by the use of 
very little printed matter on it and the elimination of any 
semblance of a border that may accentuate bad folding. 
The chief reason for a cover is to supply heavier outside 
pages to give form to the booklet. To accentuate this, a 
paper of different color and texture may be chosen. 
Ordinarily cover paper is inexpensive, but the cover adds 
extra cost for it requires separate press work. Hence it 
is well to limit the printing upon it to the two outside 
pages so that the extra press work may be reduced to one 
run. The pretty effe'cts produced with a cover that laps 
over the inside pages is offset by the cost of extra trim- 


ming and binding for with such a cover the two parts 
of the publication must be trimmed separately before 
binding. As for the printed matter on the cover, it is 
best to use as little as possible and to set it in relatively 
small type. If the publication must carry a list of officers, 
the names of the editors, or the table of contents, it is 
wise to place them on an inside page. All that is usually 
needed on the cover is the name of the publication, the 
date, the volume and series number, and perhaps some 
special announcement of its contents perhaps the names 
of leading articles in a small box. If a very decorative 
cover is selected, it is well to have an electrotype or cut 
of it made to avoid any possible typographical errors in 
succeeding issues ; a mortise may be cut in the electro for 
contents and date or they may be placed at its top or bot- 
tom. The question of advertisements on the cover will 
be discussed later. 

7. The Title Page 

The position and content of the title page are rather 
well established by custom. If an entire page is devoted 
to this purpose, it should be the first right-hand 
page in the book. A great saving of space can be effected, 
however, by reducing this material to a title head- 
ing at the top of the first page of reading matter. 
When a list of editors, officers, or contents must be in- 
cluded, a good plan is to devote the top of the first 
right-hand page to title heading and the bottom to this 
additional material. As this matter is set in display type 
it is wise to select type to correspond with the title type 
used throughout and on the cover. Here again white 
space makes better display than large, black type. In 


content, the title heading should include the name of the 
publication, the name of the publishers, the publication 
office, the number of issues per year, the price per issue 
and per year, the volume and series number, and the 
date of the issue. The names of the editor and business 
manager should b included here. If the publication is 
mailed as second class matter, the title heading should 
carry a notice reading: "Entered as second class matter 
on (date of entrance) at the post office at (city and 
state) under the Act of Congress, March 3, 1879." 
This is also a good place for copyright notice if the publi- 
cation is copyrighted. Some small editors also include a 
list of advertising rates and other notices, but these may 
usually be dispensed with. Large magazine and news- 
papers usually place this material on the editorial page, 
but the first page is a better position in a small publication 
since it rarely has a distinct editorial page. 

This material is mentioned here because much of it is 
required by the postal authorities. In addition, the publi- 
cation must carry at stated intervals an announcement of 
ownership sworn before a notary. It is well to consult 
the local postmaster in regard to the postal laws before 
venturing upon such an enterprise. Copyright is secured 
by sending two copies of the publication and a small fee 
to the Copyright Bureau, Washington, together with 
proper blanks obtained from that office. 

8. Advertisements 

Where to Place Them. The position and make-up 
of advertisements must be determined at the outset. 
The small editor will find himself almost forced to yield 
to the advertiser's desire to be near reading mat- 


ter and should plan make-up accordingly. A good 
method is to devote left-hand pages to advertising, begin- 
ning at the back and working forward through the book- 
let as far as necessary. If all advertisements are kept on 
left-hand pages back of the book's center, a maximum of 
25 per cent of the space will be devoted to advertising a 
good ratio and all advertising space will face reading 
matter. The question of selling the back page and the 
two inside pages of the cover to advertisers is a serious 
one. It is usually possible to charge a higher rate for 
these positions but little is gained for the extra press work 
will destroy the profit. The advertisement on the back 
page also injures the appearance of the small publication 
far more than the price can offset clean covers give dis- 

Uniformity in Appearance. Matters of typography 
and make-up should be settled before any advertisements 
are accepted. More and more publishers are limiting the 
size and blackness of type in advertising display, espe- 
cially near reading matter. A good plan is to refuse to 
use in ads larger or blacker type than is employed in the 
largest title. The printer should also be urged to confine 
himself to one style of type throughout, preferably the 
style used in reading pages, and to obtain all display 
through small type offset with white space. Illustrations 
allowed in advertisements should strictly accord with the 
rest of the make-up no black cuts should be permitted. 
Many advertisers will call for fancy borders about their 
ads, but the appearance of the publication will be greatly 
improved by the use of the same kind of border for every 
ad perhaps a single heavy rule. This will secure uni- 
formity and give all advertisers a fair chance in attracting 


notice. It would not be wise to announce such a policy 
in advance, for the average advertiser does not give the 
matter a thought, and the balky advertiser can usually be 
convinced by a proof of a well-set ad conforming to*the 
editor's policy. The typographical rule is needed mainly 
to govern the careless printer who has a weakness for 
large type and for the nearest case. 

9. Dummy Model 

After the editor has decided on the make-up, it 
is well to make a dummy model to guide the printer 
and settle misunderstandings. To make such a dummy, 
the editor should obtain from the printer a sheet of the 
gaper chosen, folded, trimmed, and stitched in final 
formTwith cover attached. On each page he should 
draw the outline of the type matter to show its 
size and position, the line length and number of lines. At 
the top of each page he should indicate the content of the 
folio head, on special pages he should mark the extreme 
limits of space to be occupied in display, and on various 
pages the amourtt of space to be left for headings. A line 
about the advertising pages will show the standard border 
size. Throughout he may indicate the kind and sizes of 
type to be used in various places. When finished, the 
dummy will be a complete working model of each issue. 
One copy may be given to the printer and another may be 
retained by the editor as it will prove of great value in 
estimating space and paging proof. It will form a part 
of the printer's contract like the drawings which an 
architect attaches to his building specifications. 

Sample of Publication Design. As an example of 
design and its problems, the following will illustrate the 


working out of a small publication for a special purpose. 
It was a small monthly designed to combine greatest 
artistic effect with low printing cost. A large page, about 
9 x 12, was chosen for its possibilities in illustration and 
artistic page make-up. Thirty-two pages were selected 
because the printer's press could handle that size in two 
octavos. For economy a cover was dispensed with and a 
heavy paper was chosen to make up for its absence. The 
paper used was a calendered book paper, slightly cream in 
color, 36 x 48 inches in size, running no pounds to the 
ream. After folding and trimming, the pages were 8ft 
by i i l /2 inches and had uniform margins of ^ inch on all 
sides. Hand-set body type was chosen because the printer 
had only a worn-out Junior Linotype and in his cases was 
a large stock of the Bodoni family. The io/12-point 
Bodoni Book was selected as body type with 12, 18-, 24-, 
and 36-Bodoni Bold for headings. There were also a 
few fonts of script and italic of the same family so that 
the one style of type could be used throughout. Head- 
ings were to be set in 24-point capitals and small letters 
and in i8-point capitals, with an occasional 3<>point head- 
ing on an important article. Light-face 12-point capitals 
were to be used in folio headings. No type larger than 
24-point was to be used in advertisements and each was 
to have single-rule border. 

The front page outside carried the name in a box, 
3 x 6^ inches, near the top ; this was drawn up and re- 
produced in a zinc etching. The volume and serial num- 
bers arid the date were in small type below it. The rest of 
the page was blank save the title of the leading article in 
36-point capitals and small letters in the center below the 
cut. Page 2 carried an advertisement. Page 3 had the 


board of editors and publisher's announcement in a box 
at the top and an announcement of the succeeding issue 
below. Page 4 carried a layout of photographs or a car- 
toon. Reading matter began on page 5 below a title head- 
ing. From this point through page 15, each page was in 
two 27-em columns, set in 10/12 Bodoni Book with no 
column rule; each column had 56 lines and each page 
carried about 1,100 words. Each article heading stretched 
across the entire page and consisted of a title in 24-point 
bold capitals and small letters centered, the author's name 
in lo-point capitals and small letters, and a three-line 
summary in lo-point italics, indented 4 ems on each side. 
The first word of each article was a 24-point initial. All 
articles began at the top of right-hand pages, extended 
through either two or four pages, and if necessary were 
broken over to the back. Thus the best article lengths 
were approximately 2,000 and 4,000 words. Illustrations 
were ordered in single and double column widths and each 
page was treated as a separate problem of make-up. 
Pages 1 6 and 17 were devoted to editorials, set in 10/12 
Bodoni Book, in two 25-em columns, and each page was 
surrounded by a single-rule border. The editorials were 
short and separated by three asterisks ; each began with a 
24-point letter. These pages were the exact center of the 

Back of page 17, all reading matter was set in three 
i8-em columns. The headings were of the same design 
but in smaller type. All advertisements of full-, half-, or 
quarter-page size were placed on left-hand pages; their 
make-up was begun at the back and was never to go 
further forward than page 20. Advertisements sold by 
the column inch were placed in the last column to the right 


of the reading pages, as near the back as possible. The 
pages back of page 16 were used for articles breaking 
over from the front, for unimportant material, for de- 
partments, and miscellaneous reading matter. The design 
afforded a magazine of great capacity at small cost, and 
a great flexibility of make-up. The uniformity of typog- 
raphy gave it great richness. 

Specifications of a Quarterly. Ideas for a smaller 
publication may be suggested by this description of a 
periodical designed for best appearance at least cost. A 
small page, 6 x 9, was selected so that it could be mailed 
in envelopes. The paper inside was a cheap antique since 
no illustrations were used ; it was also cream-colored and 
as light as could be handled on the press, because the 
publication was not entered as second class matter and it 
was desired to keep the mailing cost down to I cent per 
copy meaning that the copy, cover, and envelope must 
not weigh more than 2 ounces. The lightness of the 
paper required a cover cheap stock of a light-brown 
color. The size chosen was thirty-two pages because the 
printer's press handled a 35 x 48 sheet and could print 
the entire booklet in two 1 6-page runs. A uniform 
modern face of type was selected for all reading matter 
and display as the printer had a fairly complete stock of 
one family. All reading matter was set in io/12-point 
type, 27-em columns and 42 lines per page with side 
margins slightly less than fa inch and broader margins 
at top and bottom. Less type on the page would have 
improved the appearance but sacrificed capacity. All 
headings were set in 12-point black-face capitals and the 
author's name was in 8-point capitals and small letters. 
Some unimportant material was set in 8-point type. Folio 


heads were lo-point light capitals, with single rule above 
and double rule below. 

The outside cover carried simply the name, date, 
volume and serial number, and a box at the bottom con- 
taining a brief list of contents. All other cover pages 
were blank. The first page inside had the title heading at 
the top and a box containing officers' names at the bottom. 
The .three inches of space between was devoted to the be- 
ginning of the leading editorial. From that point on 
articles succeeded each other continuously, beginning 
where they would, although an attempt was made to place 
headings near the tops of pages. No articles were al- 
lowed to end at the bottom of right-hand pages, but a few 
lines were always carried over to lead the reader to the 
next title. Beginning with page 18, all left-hand pages 
were devoted to ads, sold in full, half, and quarter pages, 
set in uniform type not to exceed 24-point, and boxed in 
a single-rule border. In the special number each year 
that carried the convention program, the program was 
carefully divided into sessions and placed on the right- 
hand pages in the back a page to a session. This pleased 
advertisers and enabled the editor to charge higher rates 
in this issue. 


Exact Length Important 

As soon as the publication has been designed and the 
contract let to the printer, the editor is ready to begin 
turning in copy. The work of designing should have in- 
dicated the most suitable article lengths, and the editor 
should establish certain lengths for certain purposes. 
Whoever his contributors may be, he will find his work 


simplified if he asks for a definite number of words when 
he calls for copy. Instead of asking for "a short article," 
he should ask for "a 2,ooo-word article" or "3,000 words 
on the subject." The length should be determined on thci 
basis of the number of words carried on each page. 

Form of Copy 

All copy should be typewritten before it is given to the 
printer. If the author does not type it, the editor will 
find .that the cost of typewriting will be saved in mistakes 
avoided. It is much easier also to estimate space that 
typewritten copy will fill. The copy should be double- or 
triple-spaced on one side of the paper and should have 
liberal margins for corrections. Before giving it to the 
printer, the editor should edit it as carefully as the news- 
paper desk man edits reporter's copy to avoid changes in 
proof. For the sake of uniformity, he should establish 
definite rules of typographical style, punctuation, spelling, 
and grammar. These matters may be treated in accord- 
ance with suggestions in Chapter II, athough the small 
editor must exercise greater care in altering the content 
of articles. Every piece of copy should bear type direc- 
tions at the head of the first page. These should be indi- 
cated in printing office terms, inclosed in a circle, and 
should include the size and style of body type, the column 
width, and the size and style of various display lines, also 
whether underscored material should be set in bold or 
italic type. In tabulated material, a diagram or model 
should indicate the form. 

Proof Corrections 

When the material is in type, the printer will supply 
galley proof, which should be corrected carefully in ac- 



cordance with the suggestions in the chapter on "Proof- 
reading." It is well to have some one follow copy so that 
changes in content may be noted. When a change of 
content due to the printer's error is noted it should be 
marked "See Copy" to avoid charge for correction ; other 
extensive changes not in accord with the copy should be 
recorded so that the correction bill may be checked. After 
the galley proof has been returned, it is well to read a 
revise to see if corrections have been made. In linotype 
material it is necessary to see successive revises until all 
mistakes have been eliminated, for the new line-slug may 
have another error. After all errors have disappeared, 
two proofs should be supplied for use in making a page 
dummy, which will be described later. 

Copy Record 

As all the copy for an issue is rarely turned over to the 
printer at the same time or handled together, the task of 
keeping track of it is a complicated one. To simplify 
this, the editor will find a "copy record," in some such 
form as that below, of great assistance. A separate 
record should be kept for each issue and the several 
columns indicate the progress from copy to finished form, 
with the dates entered to serve as a check on a dilatory 

Name of 

of Words 






T T .yp e 


Smith's paper. . 
Book reviews . . 











i page 







Diagram of Make-up 

As the galley proofs pile up on the editor's desk, it is a 
bewildering task to take account of the space they will 





?****- J4 







fill, and some system must be devised or the e'ditor will 
find himself on press day with several pages too few or 
too many. A diagram that expresses the editor's ideas 


of the finished make-up in graphic form will simplify the 
problem and make easier the puzzling task of paging. 
The preceding diagram is one that works successfully 
and is simple to draw and fill out. In the outline, each 
page is represented by an oblong space, with the page 
number in the corner. The pages in the left-hand column 
are left-hand pages and those in the other column are the 
pages that face them. The advantage of this system is 
that it enables the editor to see opposing pages in proper 
relation. Pages i and 32 stand out alone, because no 
pages face them. 

After the diagram has been drawn, the first step is to 
indicate on the proper pages the material whose position 
in the book is fixed, i.e., the title pages, advertisements, 
etc. Then it is possible to see graphically how much 
space there is to fill and to estimate it exactly on the basis 
of the number of lines of type per page. As each piece 
of copy reaches the revise proof stage, it may be entered 
up in the proper place and enough space is left for the 
number of lines in it, including the heading. Just before 
press day, when most of the copy has been set up, the 
diagram indicates exactly how many lines of space remain 
to be filled. The diagram then serves as a model to be 
followed in paging and furnishes an easy way to try out 
various make-up possibilities easier than cutting and 
pasting proof. 

Paging Proof 

A page dummy is an exact working model of a finished 
publication to guide the printer in making up galleys of 
type into page forms. The printer can, of course, page 


the .type without a dummy, if the consecutive order of 
articles is suggested to him, but it is well for the editor 
to follow the example of magazine editors and work out 
make-up themselves. This must be done if any attempt 
is to be made to obtain artistic make-up, which involves 
treating each page as a separate problem. The dummy is 
made by cutting the galley proof into page lengths and 
pasting it on sheets of paper that indicate the finished 
pages. The easiest method is to bind up enough sheets 
to give the required number of pages i.e., sixteen leaves 
give thirty-two pages number them in order, write the 
proper folio head across the top, and paste on each page 
the proof of the type matter that is to appear on that 
page. The sheets should be large enough to allow for cor- 
rections and directions in the margin. If a diagram has 
been made up in advance, the task is a simple one ; with- 
out a diagram, it is a matter of cutting, pasting, and fit- 
ting until things come even. A good plan is to paste 
proof on a copy of a previous issue. 

Problems in Paging 

Certain principles must be followed in making a page 
dummy. The first of these is to make each page exactly 
the same length; if the make-up allows forty-two lines of 
type, forty-one or forty-three lines on a page will cause 
unattractive unevenness. The printer may make up for 
it by leading out short pages, but that is not good practice. 
In counting the number of lines, the editor must make 
due allowance for inserts in smaller or larger type and for 
each heading; the proof will indicate how much. When 
the dummy is complete, he must insist that the printer 
follow it to the line, for an extra line carried over in one 


place will mean a line carried over on every page follow- 
ing. All instructions may be indicated in the margins and 
a chance is offered to catch errors missed in former 

Position of Article Headings 

The problem involved in the placing of article headings 
is concerned with making each page attractive and at the 
same time with carrying the reader through from page to 
page so that, when he reaches the end of one article, the 
heading of the next is before him. Some editors prefer 
to place all headings at the tops of pages and to make up 
for varying article lengths by leaving the bottom of the 
last page blank when the article does not fill it. In such 
practice, it is customary to begin all articles on right- 
hand pages to carry the reader through and to facilitate 
clipping. This method often involves the use of fillers or 
break-overs and is ordinarily too wasteful of space for the 
small publication. A better practice is to place the articles 
in consecutive order without regard for the position of 
the headings at the top of the page or the middle, on 
the left or right. The reader is carried along by the few 
lines of the preceding article carried over. This system 
makes attractive pages and economizes every inch of space. 
It is harder to make up, however, for some attempt must 
be made to keep headings above the middle of the page 
and some juggling of article is involved. 

Page Breaks 

Another question is the typographical one of breaking 
from one page or column to the next. It is considered 
bad form to break a word from one page to the next and 


equally bad to leave a partial line the first or last line 
of a paragraph at the top or bottom of a page. The 
editor must avoid it either by juggling the articles, or, 
better, by asking the printer to re justify a line or two in 
order to crowd back a word or make an additional line. 
Many paragraphs, it will be found, end in one-word lines 
which offer elastic points where a line of space may be 
saved by a small amount of rejustifying in the preceding 

Page and Form Proofs 

After the editor has submitted his page dummy and the 
printer has made up the pages, it is best to ask for a page 
proof of the entire publication for a final checking up 
of folio heads, page numbers, and all the work of paging. 
When this has been revised, the publication is ready for 
the press. Even then, careful editors go to the printing 
office on press day to see a form proof or the first sheet 
off the press. Besides furnishing the last chance to catch 
errors, it gives an opportunity to see if all pages are right- 
side-up and in proper place. If the sheet is folded and 
trimmed it is possible to examine the uniformity of the 


There is so much variation in the financial conditions 
behind small publication work that it is impossible to dis- 
cuss the business end of the work in great detail. There 
are, however, certain ideas and methods that will assist 
the small editor in his business problems, whatever may 
be his financial backing. 


z* Advertising 

Dealing with the Advertiser. If the publication is to 
carry advertising, the matter of handling it involves 
similar problems in all cases. The questions regarding 
its position, typographical and other limitations, and 
make-up, have already been discussed. Its character and 
amount will be determined by the nature of the publica- 
tion. The matter of soliciting advertising must be deter- 
mined by the conditions of the work. Whether it be 
solicited in person or by letter, however, one or two things 
are always true. Whatever the character and circulation 
of the publication may be, the editor will find it wise to 
analyze the appeal of his publication, the reason why it 
is a good advertising medium, and formulate this appeal 
in concrete statements that will attract the advertiser. He 
then has a "talking point" like the salesman of goods. His 
publication is more than likely to be a class publication cir- 
culating among readers of a certain kind, and will appeal 
to a limited degree to all advertisers who wish to reach 
this class. But, more than that, there is usually some rea- 
son why this publication will supply a cheap and effective 
way of interesting and reaching this class. It may be the 
only publication in a large territory going to this class; 
it may be the official organ of the class ; it may be pub- 
lished as a means by which the class of readers exchange 
notes. Some thought on the subject will open up larger 
advertising possibilities than were at first imagined. And 
in all cases advertising space should be thought of by the 
editor* as a commodity of value, a kind of goods that he 
has for sale. In no case should advertisers be asked to 
buy space as a favor or a duty they should be offered 
a definite amount of valuable publicity at a proportionate 


price. If the editor knows his field, he can often express 
in figures the cost of circularizing the field by letter as 
compared with the cost of reaching these customers 
through his publication. On this basis, his advertising 
becomes a business proposition. His soliciting letters 
should carry that feeling and should state the value of 
his space in brief, concise language. Very often when 
it is hard to convince an advertiser and point out the ap- 
peal, it is worth while to write an advertisement embody- 
ing the editor's ideas and even have it set in type to show 
its value. 

Checking Advertising Returns. After the space is 
sold it is wise to follow it up with an idea of discovering 
what returns it is bringing to the advertiser and of in- 
creasing its "'pulling power." The use of a "key address" 
in the ad will enable the advertisers to know exactly what 
business is resulting from it. In most cases, also, it is 
wise to request a change of advertising copy with each 
issue as the constant change gives the advertisement the 
character of reading matter. Nothing is so dismal to ad- 
vertiser or editor as standing cards, unchanging from 
issue to issue. The change does not involve extra cost 
since a printer charges about as much for holding the ad 
in type as for resetting it. 

Size of Advertisements. The division of advertising 
space depends upon the publication's make-up. If small 
pages are used, it is best to sell space by full, half, and 
quarter pages. With larger pages the space may be sold 
by the column-inch, meaning an inch high and a column 
wide. Newspapers sell all their space by the inch at the 
rate of fourteen agate (sJ4 point) lines to the inch, but 
such a practice in small publications results in difficult 


make-up. The prices charged are usually based on what 
the editor thinks he can get, or on a fair division of cost 
between subscriptions and advertising. The foundation 
is the price of the full page. The standard among na- 
tional magazines of general circulation is $i per page per 
thousand circulation the page being about 7 x 10 inches 
and containing about 16 column inches. This means that 
a magazine of 120,000 circulation may charge $120 per 
page. With a class circulation, the small editor may 
charge relatively more because his circulation is intensive 
every reader is a possible buyer of the class of goods 
advertised. He uses his page rate as the basis of his 
schedule but he does not ordinarily divide his rates exactly 
in proportion to the division of space. The small ad is 
not so valuable as the large ad, in that it offers less room 
for display and discussion, but to a certain extent it at- 
tracts almost as much notice. Hence a half -page ad is 
worth more than half as much as a page ad, and a quarter- 
page of space is worth more than half as much as a half- 

The Rate Card. A sliding scale of rates is therefore 
necessary to include all sizes that the editor wishes to sell. 
A certain discount should also be given for contract ads 
that are to run more than one time, and an extra rate 
should be charged for special positions, such as cover 
pages and the first page after reading matter. All of 
these should be figured out in advance and embodied in 
a printed rate card to be inclosed in all letters soliciting 
advertising. The printed card indicates to the advertiser 
that the editor is businesslike and is treating all adver- 
tisers alike. A suggestive sliding scale of rates for a small 
class publication is illustrated here: 




Full Page $15.00 

Half Page 8.00 

Quarter Page 4.50 

One column 8.00 

Inch (single column) 1.50 

(Cover pages 20 per cent extra) 

Dimensions : Size of page, 6x9 inches. Two columns. 
Column length, 7 inches; column width, 13 picas 
{2 1/6 inches). 

Forms close I5th of month previous to publication date. 

Terms : Cash with order or satisfactory references. Ac- 
counts payable quarterly. Ten per cent discount on 
annual contracts. All advertising next to, or fac- 
ing, reading matter. 

Rates Subject to Change without Notice 

In the above card the scale is based on the price per 
page per single insertion, which results in a lower page 
rate on contracts. It might be figured out more com- 
pletely on the rate card on the basis of a minimum price 
per page (say $20) on any contract : 

Four Insertion 

Two Insertion 


Full Page 


$42 OO 


Half Page 


23 10 

12 10 

Quarter Page 





A 2O 

2 20 

This scale has a minimum rate of $20 per page on the 
greatest 'discount for four insertion order and gives 


5 per cent, increase for two insertions and 10 per cent, 
increase for one insertion. It illustrates the way in which 
large magazines figure their advertising rates. A typo- 
graphical model for the rate card may be obtained from 
any magazine. 

Advertising Contract. Although an advertiser's let- 
ter ordering space is almost as good as a contract, many 
small editors feel that it is safer to use a contract. An ad- 
vantage of the system is that the contract forms a con- 
venient record for filing in the office; if it is printed on a 
card of convenient size it may be filed in a card catalogue 
which serves as a handy record of the ads to be carried 
in each succeeding issue. If it carries in addition a place 
for recording the acceptance of proof and of payment, 
the card file saves much bookkeeping. The following is 
a suggestive model : 

Publisher, Sample Magazine, 192. . 

1234 First street, City, State. 

Please insert advertisement of the undersigned, to 

occupy , commencing 

for which agree to pay $ 

Proof Submitted Proof O.K'd Paid 

Saving of printing is accomplished by printing the 
contract on the back of the rate card, since both must be 
inclosed in letters soliciting advertising. Duplicate con- 
tracts are of little value unless the advertiser pays in 

Proof to Be Submitted. As indicated in the record 
spaces on the contract card, the editor submits proof of 


the advertisement before it is published. He sends a 
printer's proof to the advertiser, as soon as the ad is in 
type, and delays publication of the ad until it returns with 
O. K. or corrections. Much difficulty will be avoided at 
times if these accepted proofs are filed with the adver- 
tiser's correspondence. 

Billing the Advertiser. When the advertiser's bill is 
sent to him, it is well to send him a marked copy in the 
same mail so that he may be sure the ad was published. 
Some advertisers wish two copies for their office files. 
Because of the large number of bills to be sent out each 
month, it is wise to have a printed bill-head; it is likely 
to receive prompter payment Needless to say, also, no 
one should try to run a publication, however small, with- 
out a printed letter-head carrying the editor's name and 
office of publication. In fact, the smaller the publication, 
the more necessary is the letter-head, not because adver- 
tisers distrust the editor's honesty, but because they wish 
to be sure that they are buying space in a bona fide publi- 

System and Methods. All of these suggestions will 
indicate that the advertising branch of small publication 
work must be conducted in a businesslike manner. No 
matter how small the publication, the editor must con*- 
vince the men with whom he is dealing that he is 
thoroughly businesslike. Money spent on proper letter- 
head and other printed matter, as well as on type\fritten 
correspondence, will be more than repaid in added prestige 
and business. Each magazine has a system of its own 
for handling these matters and advertising managers are 
usually glad to supply a beginner with samples of their 
printed matter and an explanation of their various sys- 


terns. They are often especially glad because they realize 
that the slipshod business methods and cringing solicita- 
tions of many small, insignificant publications are doing 
much to retard the development of advertising business 
on a modern basis. 

2. Circulation 

Wrappers or Envelopes. The most serious problem in 
connection with small publication circulation is that of 
wrapping and addressing. If the magazine is of small 
size, 6x9 inches, the best wrapper is a cheap manila 
envelope, large enough to hold the booklet without fold- 
ing, and printed with the name and address of the publi- 
cation in the upper left corner. If it is mailed under the 
second class rate, it should carry the words "Entered as 

second class matter in the post office at ." It is 

also wise to print under the name, "Postmaster: If not 
delivered please notify publisher and postage will be sent 
for return." This aids in eliminating dead addresses on 
lists. If the publication is too large for envelope mailing, 
the best substitute is a flat manila wrapper rolled around 
the magazine and pasted. It may be large or small, 
printed or blank. The wrapper can be handled more 
quickly than envelopes, but results in a tightly rolled 
magazine. A bulky publication may be mailed flat in a 
wrapper, but there is danger that the wrapper will be 
torn off in the mail. 

Addressing. There are several ways of disposing of 
the addressing problem. If the circulation is small, less 
than 500, the cheapest method is to address the envelopes 
by hand, with pen or typewriter. A large circulation re- 
quires the use of an addressing machine. The simplest 


kind of mechanical addresser is some form of the "mus- 
tang mailer," a contrivance used by many newspapers. It 
requires a printed list of names and addresses on tough 
colored paper and operates by cutting and pasting one 
name each time it is pressed down on a wrapper. For its 
economical operation the circulation lists should be set up 
on the linotype machine and kept in type form in galleys ; 
each month, after corrections have been made, the printer 
takes a proof of .the galley for use in the mailer. The 
chief objection to this method is that the pasted slip is 
small and indistinct. The next best mailer is some form 
of the stencil mailing machine. There are other kinds 
of automatic addressing machines but many of them are 
too costly for the small publisher ; he must use the facili- 
ties which the printer has or he can borrow. In cities 
the printers are likely to have mailing machines but in 
smaller towns the editor must rely on the mustang or 
hand addressing. 

Subscription Lists. The work of keeping track of 
subscriptions is greatly facilitated by the use of a date or 
some other sign on the address slip or stencil to indicate 
the date on which the subscription expires. Some system 
must also be adopted for classifying the names on the 
lists. They may be arranged alphabetically or, better, by 
states or cities. With such a classification and the expira- 
tion date, the editor can easily keep his lists up to date by 
going over the lists after each issue and throwitlg out 
dead names. 

Subscription Blank. Methods of developing circula- 
tion and following up expired subscriptions are outside 
this discussion, but, if a subscription blank is used, the 
following is a good form. It should be printed on a piece 


of paper that may be slipped into a letter and should carry 
at the head the name and address of the publication. 

Gentlemen : I am enclosing one dollar ($1.00) 
for one year's subscription to the Sample Magazine, 

Name Street 

City State 

Postal Rates. Mailing rates depend on whether the 
publication may be entered as a second class periodical. 
If it is not admitted under this rate, it must be mailed as 
third class matter at the rate of "i cent for 2 ounces or 
fraction thereof/' and stamps must be affixed to each 
copy. This often makes necessary some consideration of 
paper weight. If the weight of each copy is slightly over 
two ounces, it is better to reduce its size or the weight of 
the paper than to pay 2 cents on each copy. The weight 
may be determined in advance by having the printer make 
up a dummy of the paper selected, of the exact size and 
with cover attached. If the weight is slightly over the 
mark, lighter paper or cover or greater trim may reduce 
it sometimes an extra Y% inch trimmed off one edge 
will save I cent per copy in mailing. The envelope must 
of course be considered in the experiment and, if the 
weight is close to the mark, it is well to have the post- 
master weigh a copy and give his official sanction. When 
the circulation is large enough to warrant it, the post- 
master may save the editor the work of affixing stamps 
by allowing him to print "i cent paid" on the envelope 
and pay in a lump sum. 

The Second-Class Rate. Permission to mail under 
the second-class periodical rate is obtained by application 


to the postal department through the local postmaster. He 
will require the editor to fill out under oath an application 
blank containing a long list of questions concerning the 
nature and business of the publication. If the postmaster 
thinks, after reading the blank and examining the editor's 
books, that the postal authorities are likely to honor the 
application, he forwards it to Washington with two 
copies of a current number of the magazine. While ne- 
gotiations are pending, he may if he wishes allow the 
editor to deposit a sum of money equivalent to the third 
class rate and to mail an issue or two carrying the note, 
"Application for entry as second-class matter at the post 

office at pending.' 9 If the entry is allowed, the 

amount in excess of the second-class rate is then refunded. 
This rate is granted only to a publication that fulfills the 
following conditions: It must be issued regularly at 
stated intervals, as frequently as four times a year, bear 
a date of issue, and be numbered consecutively. It must 
be issued from a known office of publication. It must 
be formed of printed paper sheets, without board, cloth, 
leather, or other substantial binding, such as distinguish 
printed books for preservation from periodical publica- 
tions. "It must be originated and published for the dis- 
semination of information of a public character, or de- 
voted to literature, the sciences, arts, or some special 
industry, and having a legitimate list of subscribers : Pro- 
vided, however that nothing herein contained shalfc be so 
construed as to admit to the second-class rate regular 
publications designed primarily for advertising purposes, 
or for free circulation, or for circulation at nominal 
In brief, the second-class rate is intended for bona fide 


periodicals and every attempt is made to close it to ad- 
vertising publications. To this end, the editor is ques- 
tioned concerning the amount of advertising he carries, 
whether his space is open to all advertisers, the relation of 
his paid circulation to his total circulation, and the intent 
of the publication. Some leniency is occasionally shown 
to publications with small circulations and much advertis- 
ing, on the basis of their intent. All small editors make 
an attempt to get this rate not only because of its cheap- 
ness i pound for i cent but because second-class mat- 
ter is mailed by the pound without stamps and the extra 
expense involved in the "or fraction thereof" phrase in 
the third-class rate is eliminated. The editor simply de- 
livers his edition, wrapped and addressed, at the post 
office ; it is weighed in one mass, and he pays by the pound 
in monthly or quarterly payments. The admission to the 
rate gives a certain amount of prestige in the eyes of 
advertisers, since it indicates that it is a bona fide periodi- 
cal with a paid circulation. 

3. The Printer 

No small publisher should attempt to do business with 
a printer without a written contract specifying not only 
the price but the character of the work. The contract 
should give the kind and weight of paper, the size and 
number of pages, the kind of cover and binding, the kind 
of typography, and the character of work in general. It 
is well also to specify the rate on extra work, such as 
proof correction and repaging. The contract should be 
in duplicate, signed by both parties, and sufficiently definite 
to stand the test of the law court. 

Many printers prefer to set a lump price for the publi- 


cation of a certain number of copies of certain size and 
make-up. This is especially true when they are bidding 
low ; they hope to make up the difference on extras and 
additions. When the bid is attractively low, it is some- 
times well to accept such a contract, but usually the small 
editor will find it best to sign a contract more favorable 
to himself and elastic enough to allow for growth. Such 
a contract needs to be divided into parts to correspond 
with the various operations involved. It should specify 
the rate per page for composition, the charge for addi- 
tional runs on the press caused by increased number of 
pages, and the charge for folding and binding per 100 
or 1,000 copies. In some cases the specifications cover the 
cost of composition per page (including additional press 
work) and the cost of "manufacturing" per 1,000 copies. 
Either arrangement allows for expansion in size or circu- 
lation at a proportionate rate. 


I. Plan a small publication advertising booklet, periodical, 
student paper, house organ, etc. after this method: 

(a) After choosing project, outline field and problems 
in writing, select best type and form of pub- 

(6) Work out the typography, selecting type from 
catalogues, and writing specifications. 

(c) Draw to scale a sample page, with complete type 

specifications and typical headlines. 

(d) Make a dummy diagram of complete publication. 

(e) Make a complete page dummy of entire publica- 

tion with all specifications, rules, and 


2. Work out type specifications and make-up schedules of 
various commercial magazines and booklets. 

3. Plan organization of staff of student newspaper. 

4. Make a plan for financing a small publication. 

5. Write a detailed criticism of typography and dummying 
of some amateur publication perhaps a student periodical. 

6. Make up some rate cards, working out sliding scale. 

7. Make up schedule of dates for a monthly publication. 

8. Work out page sizes from various standard paper sizes. 
Do some arithmetic on determining number of pages. 

9. Study paper samples obtained from printer fold up 

10. Design some title and cover pages of various kinds. 

11. Cut up a small publication and repage it for better effect. 




Dates in History of Printing are in Italics, 

14x8 Disputed date of earliest piece of printing Brussels 

wood-cut of the Blessed Virgin. 
1^50 First book printed from movable types by Gutenberg 

in Germany. 

1454 Small type first usedJn Pope Nicholas V. Indulgence. 
1457 First newspaper Nuremberg Cassette in Germany. 
146$ Roman type appeared cast at Subiaco, Italy, by two 

German printers. 
1475 Approximate date of first English bookby William 


1480 Printing was well established throughout Europe. 
1501 Italic type invented by Aldus Manutius, Venice. 
1534 First regular newspaper Neue Zeitung aus Hispanien 

und Italien Nuremberg. 

7550 Typefounding established as a separate business. 
1550 Metal screw introduced in hand press by Banner of 


1588 First English newsletter -English Mercurie. 
1615 First daily newspaper Die Frankfurter Oberpostnants 

Zeitung by Egenoll Eurmel Father of Newspapers. 

1620 First real improvement in the hand press, by W. J. 
Blaew, Amsterdam he devised a spring to raise the 


1621 First newspaper in England The Weekly Newes 

told of German wars was beginning of "newsbooks" 
or "relations." 



1622 First advertisement in English periodical a book adver- 
tisement in Thomas Archer's Corantos. 

1626 First newspaper with a name Archer's Mercurius Brit- 

1631 First regular French newspaper Gazette de France 
by Theophraste Renandot 

1637 Decree of Star Chamber limiting number of English 


1638 First printer in America Stephen Daye of Cambridge, 

1641 First English journal of domestic news Thomas' Dftir- 

nall Occurrences in Parliament, later called Perfect 

DiurnaU its writer, Samuel Peck, is called Father 

of the English Newspaper. 
1650 First official journal Marchamont Needham's Mercurius 

Publicus, issued for Cromwell. 
1657 M. Needham published a newspaper entirely composed 

of advertisements Publick Adviser rate not based 

on space. 

1659 Joseph Moxon, first English typefounder, began letter 


1660 Leipsic Gazette published. 

1660 The word "advertisement" began to be used by English 

1665 First official organ, in form of newspaper, to reprint 
laws and proclamations Oxford Gazette later called 
London Gazette it appeared after suppression of 
licensed "newsbooks" and marked end of age of 

1681 Beginning of lists of prices and reports Merchants* 
* Remembrancer English. 

1690 First newspaper in America Benjamin Harris's Publick 
Occurrences, printed in Boston to be monthly sup- 
pressed after one number. Harris was exiled English 

1692 First magazine Gentlemen's Journal, London monthly. 

1693 First woman's newspaper Ladies' Mercury, London. 


1695 Beginning of free press in England ban on parlia- 
mentary report removed licensing of books and news- 
papers stopped Post-Man, Post-Boy, Flying Post, then 

1695 Appearance of "editors," rather than "authors," of news- 

1700 First comic newspaper, Merrie Mercury, London. 

1700 Approximate date of end of "news-letters" in England. 

1702 First (?) daily in England Daily C our ant morning. 

1704 First regular newspaper in America Boston News- 
Letter, by Nicholas Boone it lived 72 years. 

1704 First example of real reporting in Boston News-Letter 
a hanging. 

1704 Appearance of Daniel Defoe's Mercure Scandale or 
Weekly Review of the Affairs of France Purg'd from 
the Errors and Partiality of Newswriters and Petty 

1706 First penny paper The Orange Postman half-penny 
or i cent. 

1706 First evening paper The London Evening Post. 

1706 First provincial paper in England CrossgrovSs Gazette 
at Norwich. 

1709 Steele's Taller appeared. 

1712 Establishment of Stamp Act half-penny per half-sheet 
in red stamps a shilling for each advertisement tax 
of a shilling on every copy of more than one sheet killed 

1719 Boston Gazette appeared a postmaster's newspaper. 

1719 American Weekly Mercury appeared in Philadelphia, 
edited by Andrew Bradford, postmaster contained 
"Busy Body" articles by Benjamin Franklin. * 

1721 New England Courant started in Boston by James Frank- 
lin, later edited by Benjamin Franklin first rebel news- 

1725 New York Gazette, weekly, started by William Brad- 
fordlater called the Post-Boy vt&s a government 


1725 Plaster-of-paris stereotyping developed by Wtiliam Ged 
of Edinburgh. 

1727 Annapolis Gazette appeared. 

1728 Pennsylvania Gazette appeared in Philadelphia later 

edited by B. Franklin merged with North American 
in 1845. 

1728 London coffeehouse men proposed a scheme of syndi- 
cating news and advertisements. 

1731 Charleston Gazette appeared. 

1731 Boston Weekly Rehearsal started by Jeremy Gridley 
very literary later became Boston Evening Post. 

1733 Rhode Island Gazette started at Newport by James 

1733 New York Weekly Journal started by John P. Zenger 

lived until 1752. 

1734 Diagrams of Battle of Phillipsburg printed by American 

1734 First newspaper libel suit in America against Zenger 

of New York Journal Andres Hamilton, defending 

editor, secured acquittal by demanding that jury find 

on fact. 

1736 Virginia Gazette started at Williamsburg. 
*737 First point system of type measurement worked out by 

Pierre S. Fournier, French typefounder. 
1742 Pennsylvania Journal and Weekly Advertiser started 

war on Stamp Act. 
1748 Independent Advertiser started by Samuel Adams, one 

of first rebel newspapers. 

1752 New York Mercury started by Hugh Gaine ran until 


1753 t Boston Gazette and Country Gentleman started as real 

organ of revolutionary party. 

1755 Connecticut Gazette started at New Haven. 

1756 Founding of oldest living continuous newspaper in 

America The Portsmouth (N. H.) Gazette. 

1758 Poor Richard's Almanac published by Benjamin Franklin. 

1762 New York Royal Gazetteer founded to combat revolu- 
tionary ideas. 


1764 Connecticut C our ant started at Hartford still published 

under same name. 

1765 "Join or Die" motto, with device of snake divided into 

eight parts, first used by Constitutional Courant 
(Burlington, N. J.) editor was William Goddard. 
1767 New York Journal 6* General Advertiser started by 
John Holt as revolutionary organ. 

1767 Connecticut Journal & New Haven Post-Boy started 

now known as New Haven Journal-Courier. 

1768 First type founding in America. 

1770 Massachusetts Spy, tri-weekly revolutionary paper, 

started carried "Join or Die" motto in 1774 still 
published as Worcester Spy. 

1771 There were twenty-five newspapers in America. 

1775 There were thirty-seven newspapers in America. 

1776 First paper to print the Declaration of Independence 

was the Virginia Gazette carried a synopsis on July 
19 and the entire document on July 26. 

1777 First daily in Paris Journal de Paris ou Poste au Soir. 
1767 Boston Chronicle founded as Tory organ ran until 1770. 

1784 First daily paper in America American Daily Adver- 

tiser of Philadelphia later merged with North Ameri- 

1785 Second daily paper in America New York Daily Ad- 


1785 London Times founded by John Walter of logotype 

fame known as The Daily Universal Register. Printed 
Logographically name changed to The Times or Daily 
Universal Register in 1788 became The Times three 
months later. * 

1786 First newspaper west of the Alleghenies The Pittsburg 


1787 First real reporter was Joseph Gales who covered first 

meeting of Congress at Philadelphia. 

1791 National Gazette started in Philadelphia as Democratic 


1792 State Gazette started in Trenton, N. J. still is pub- 


1793 First paper in Tennessee KnoxviUe Gazette. 

1797 Oldest paper in New York City started The Minerva, 

founded by Noah Webster, attacked slavery in one 
of its first numbers later became Commercial Ad- 
vertiser & New York Spectator. 

1798 First iron hand press, built by the Earl of Stanhope, 


1799 Sciota Gazette, Chillicothe, O., started by Nathaniel 

Willis, "Father of the Press of the Northwest." 

1799 Fourdinier papermaking machine invented by Robert 

Louis, Paris. 

1800 First official government paper in America National 

Intelligence & Washington Advertiser dubbed the 
Court Paper printed debates of Congress as reported 
by Gales and Seaton. 

1801 New York Evening Post started by William Coleman 

oldest paper in city that has continued under same 

1803 First paper in New Orleans The Moniteur. 

1804 First papermaking machine in England erected at Frog- 

moor Mill, called the Fourdinier machine. 

1804 Plaster stereotyping developed by Earl of Stanhope. 

1806 First paper in New Orleans after Louisiana Purchase 
Louisiana Courier part French and part English. 

1806 First American market reports Prices Current in United 
States Gazette of Philadelphia. 

180? Patent granted on plunger idea on which modern type- 
caster is based. 

1808 First paper in Indiana started at Vincennes. 

1810 frirst power press, built by Frederick Koenig modified 

hand press. 

1811 Expression "Gerrymandering" invented by Columbia 

Centinel, Boston. 

1812 First cylinder press, built by F. Koenig in England. 

1813 National Advocate started in New York by Tammany 

Hall James Gordon Bennett became its editor in 1825. 


First stereotyped book in America by John Watts, New 


1814 First newspaper in Illinois The Intelligencer at Kas- 

1814 Steam press used for first time to print London Times 

it was a Koenig cylinder press. 

1815 English Stamp duty raised to four pence per copy on 


1816 St. Louis Enquirer founded. 

1816 Largest newspaper in New York, Mercantile Advertiser, 
had 2,250 circulation there were then six dailies and 
two weeklies in the city. 

1816 First steam paper making machine in America, erected at 

1816 Clymer-Columbian hand press with lever instead of screw 


1817 First cylinder papcrmaking machine built by Thomas 

Gilpin at Brandywine, U. S. A. 
1817 Detroit Gazette founded suspended 1830. 
1820 Lithographic printing developed approximate date. 

1820 Machine-made paper supplanted hand-made paper about 

this time. 

1821 Date of first attempt to set type by machinery. 

1822 Papier-mache stereotyping invented in France. 

1822 Hand press with toggle-joint instead of lever brought out 

by Peter Smith in America. 
1822 Daniel Trcadwell built power press in Boston modified 

hand press. 
1822 Type-casting and composing machine patented in England 

by Dr. William Church of U. S. 
1822 First attempt at uniform system of type measurement in 

Americaby George Bruce, N. Y. % 

1825 First Sunday paper in America New York Sunday 

Courier published on Sunday only. 

1826 Philadelphia Public Ledger started as a penny paper. 
1826 Youth's Companion started in Boston as a religious paper. 
1826 First printing in Wisconsin 1,000 lottery tickets at 

Green Bay,. 


1826 William Cullen Bryant became editor of New York 

Evening Post. 

1827 First woman's magazine in America, The Ladies' Maga- 

zine, Boston, by Mrs. Sarah J. Hale. 
1827 The Wall street "Blanket Sheets" appeared in New York 

Courier 6- Enquirer and Journal of Commerce 6 

cents per copy the latter was founded as an abolition 

1827 Applegate 6* Cowper perfecting cylinder press adopted 

by London Times. 

1827 Washington hand press perfected by Samuel Rust, N. Y. 

1828 Grippers to handle paper on cylinder press invented by 


1828 First attempt to cast type by machinery by W. M. John- 

son, U. S. 

1829 First American sporting paper Porter's Spirit of the 

Times, N. Y. 

1830 Washington Globe started part of "Kitchen Cabinet." 

1830 Boston Transcript founded. 

1831 Humor column originated in Boston Daily Morning Post. 
1831 First railway passenger train Mohawk & Hudson Rail- 

1831 Louisville (Ky.) Journal started merged with Courier in 

1831 New York papers established news schooners to meet 

incoming vessels. 
1831 Boston Liberator, abolition paper, started by William 

Lloyd Garrison published for 34 years. 

1831 Democratic Free Press 6* Michigan Intelligencer founded 

later Detroit Free Press. 

1832 First independent penny paper, New York Globe, started 

by James Gordon Bennett in opposition to "Blanket 

Sheets" failed at once. 

1832 First cylinder press in America built by Robert Hoe. 
1832 Papier-mfahe* stereotyping introduced into England. 

1832 First illustrated journal in England Penny Magazine. 

1833 Second attempt to publish penny paper in New York 

Morning Post lasted twenty-one cfc^s by Sbepard. 


1833 First newspaper in Chicago The DemocratmxgcA 

with The Tribune in 1861. 
1833 First successful penny paper in New York The 5uifr 

started by Benjamin Day small size, much local news, 

no editorials. 

1833 First newspaper in Wisconsin Green Bay Intelligencer. 

1834 Fifteen daily papers in New York at this time popu- 

lation 270,000 largest had 6,000 circulation. 

1834 First steam press in Northwest Cincinnati Commercial 


1835 Date of the famous Moon Hoax. 

1835 There were then about 1,258 newspapers in United 
States none had more than 6,000 circulation. 

I&35 Wood engraving developed in America about this time. 

1835 First steam press in New York -installed by The Sun. 

1835 New York Herald founded by James Gordon Bennett 
on $500 capital, penny paper, marks beginning of In- 
dependent Press. 

1835 Famous money articles begun by New York Herald. 

1835 First regular stock quotations, published by New York 

1835 Idea * news companies to distribute papers, by New 
York Herald. 

1835 Cash system in advertisements and subscriptions, by New 
York Herald. 

1835 New York papers had pony expresses to Washington 
and Philadelphia. 

1835 Second paper in Chicago The American later became 

The Express in 1842. 

1836 Regular news summaries begun by New York Weekly 

Herald. % 

1837 First real reporters employed by New York papers. 

1837 New Orleans Picayune started built on George W. Ken- 

dall's jokes. 

1838 Express companies startedbegan to distribute news- 

1838 First steamship line between New York and Europe. 


1838 System of foreign correspondence started by New York 

1838 First successful typecasting machine patented by David 

Bruce, New York. 

1839 Philadelphia North American started eleven papers 

merged in one. 

j#jp Papier-mache* stereotyping patented in America by Moses 

1840 Newspaper war against New York Herald because of 

its independent position waged by Courier 6* En- 
quirer and the ''Holy Allies." Herald had 51,000 
circulation, C. 6* E. had 4,200. 

1840 First electrotyped engraving, published by London 

1840 First American patent for typesetting machine Fred- 

erick Rosenberg. 

1841 New York Tribune started by Horace Greeley as penny 

political organ. 

1841 Tribune Almanac started by Greeley first newspaper 

1841 Young & Decambre typesetting machine patented 


1842 London Illustrated News started began illustrative 


1843 Old style type revived in England and America. 

1844 First newspaper on Pacific Coast Flumgudgeon Gazette 

or Bumble Bee Budget, edited by the Long-Tailed 

Coon California. 
1844 Electric telegraph perfected taken up by New York 

papers at once. First line between Washington and 

Baltimore, built by Congress. 
1844 Reporting of Sunday sermons begun by New York 


1844 Famous Roorback Hoax, concerning branded slaves, pub- 
lished by Albany Evening Journal. 
1844 Chicago Journal founded. 
1844 Kronheim's improvement on papier-mdche* stereotyping 



1844 First daily in Wisconsin founded The Milwaukee 


1845 Overland expresses to New Orleans run by New York 

Herald to cover Mexican war beat mails one to four 

1845 First war correspondents were engaged in covering Mexi- 

can war. 

1846 Alta California & San Francisco Herald appeared pub- 

lished by men from New York Herald. 
1846 Washington and Baltimore telegraph line extended to 

New York. 
1846 Stock company idea of newspaper ownership started 

by New York Tribune the idea came from France. 

1846 First Hoe type-revolving press erected. 

1847 NW York Herald had Henry Clay's speech sent from 

Cincinnati to New York. 

1847 La st f t* 16 pony expresses established jointly by several 
New York papers. 

1847 Springfield (Mass.) Republican founded by Samuel 

1847 New York Herald eliminated illustrations and other dis- 
play from its advertisements. Length of insertion 
limited to two weeks later to one day. Editorial 
notice of ad stopped. Every ad reset each day. 

1847 Chicago Tribune founded. 

1848 Associated Press founded first known as New York Asso- 

ciated Press. Harbor News Association combined with 
it its growth into country-wide association came dur- 
ing the Ws. 

1848 Applegate's type-revolving press built for London Times. 

1849 First paper in Minnesota, Minnesota Pioneer (now St. 

Paul Pioneer Press). 

1850 Idea of printing from curved stereotyped plates patented. 

1851 New York Times started by Henry J. Raymond. 

1851 There were then 3,000 periodicals in America 2,000 of 

them newspapers. 

1852 First paper in Washington Territory Olympia Pioneer 

& Democrat. 


1853 English tax on advertisements removed 

/#5J First successful American typesetting machine William 
H. Mitchell. 

1854 Chicago Times founded merged with Herald as Chicago 

Times-Herald in 1895 merged with Record as Chicago 

Record-Herald in 1901 merged with Inter-Ocean as 

Chicago Herald in 1914. 

I&55 Wood-pulp paper began to supplant rag paper. 
1857 Harper's Weekly founded. 
1857 Hoe type-revolving press installed in New York Times 

office two ten-cylinder machines were erected. 

1859 First verbatim interview with Gerrit Smith at time of 

John Brown raid on Harper's Ferry by New York 

1860 End of war between newspapers and telegraph lines 

which resulted from establishment of the Associated 

1860 New York World started as a religious and moral daily 

paper carried news, but no evil news. 
1860 Paper made of esparto introduced. 

1860 End of "Blanket Sheets" Courier < Enquirer merged 

with World. 

1861 Tax on paper removed. 

1864 Famous Lincoln Proclamation Hoax printed by New 

York Journal. 

1865 Furst web Press with stereotyped plates, built by William 

Bullock of Philadelphia. 

1865 Chicago Republican founded Charles A. Dana first 

1865 San Francisco Chronicle founded. 

1866 Ch&cago Weekly News, now The Daily News, was 


1867 Harper's Bazaar, fashion paper, started under woman 

1867 Steam news yachts used by New York Herald to meet 

i86f Cropper treadle platen job press introduced. 


1868 New York Sun purchased by Charles A. Dana for 

$175,000 introduced literary ideal in newspaper work 

had 65,000 circulation. 
1868 Stanley expedition into Anglo-Abyssinia sent by New 

York Herald to find Livingston. 
1868 Club subscription idea started by New York Tribune 

with premium engravings. 
1868 Walter rotary web perfecting press buUt for London 


1868 Atlanta (Ga.) Constitution founded 
1870 About 1,508,548,250 periodicals issued in America. 
1870 American Press Association organized. 
1870 First automatic folder for web press invented. 

1870 Burr-Kastenbein typesetter built required hand justifi- 


1871 Directory of advertisers begun by New York Herald. 

1872 J. G. Bennett refused to sell New York Herald for 

$2,200,000. . 

1872 Chicago Inter-Ocean founded merged with Record- 

Herald, 1914. 

1873 Associated Press had 200 members. 

1873 Charge for marriage announcements begun by New York 

1873 Prank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper appeared with 70 

wood engravings. 
1873 First illustrated daily paper in America New York Daily 

i$75 Tucker's rotating folding machine invented 15,000 an 


1876 Experiments on Mergenthaler linotype machine begun. 

1877 Washington Post founded. % 

1878 Minneapolis Journal founded. 

1878 Chicago typefoundry began making type on point system 
after being burned out in great fire Marder f Lust & 

1880 Photo-engraving came into use about this time. 

1880 Thorn typesetter invented^required hand justification. 


1881 Los Angeles Times founded. 

1882 New York Journal founded purchased by W. R. Hearst 

in 1895. 

1883 Joseph Pulitzer bought New York World beginning of 

sensational journalism. 4 

1884 Offset printing developed. 

1885 First punch-cutting machine for typefounders. 

1885 London Times installed its first folding machine. 

1886 Point system of type measurement adopted by American 

Type Founders' Association. 

1886 Mergenthaler linotype machine placed on the market. 

1887 First quadruple press built for New York World. 

1888 Automatic typecasting and trimming machine patented by 

Henry Earth 100 to 140 per minute. 
1888 Hoe built first three-page-wide rotary press. 
i8po First successful machine to set, justify, and distribute 

type Paige machine. 
1890 Photo-engraving becoming established commercially. 

1890 Chicago Evening Post founded. 

1891 First sextuple press built for New York Herald. 

1892 Three-color engraving process becoming established com- 


1892 Chicago Record founded as morning edition of Daily 
News merged with Times-Herald as Record-Herald, 
1901 merged with Inter-Ocean as Chicago Herald, 

I$P5 Rembrandt photogravure process introduced. 

1895 New York Journal purchased by W. R. Hearst begin- 
ning of ultra-sensational journalism. 

1800 Lanston monotype placed on market. 



This Style Sheet is one that was prepared by the Course 
of Journalism of the University of Wisconsin in cooperation 
with Madison newspapers. It is in general a "down" style and is 
representative of the tendencies of the average American news- 
paper of today. While it is not ideal in many ways, it is inserted 
here as a means of emphasizing accuracy in details. Strict atten- 
tion to typographical style assists the journalism student and 
young newspaper man in developing habits of accuracy. Rules 
are numbered for reference. 


Accuracy Always 


1. All proper nouns, months, days of the week, but not the seasons* 

2. Principal words in the titles of books, plays, lectures, pictures, 

toasts, etc., including the initial "A" or "The" : "The Man 
from Home." 

3. Titles denoting official position, rank, or occupation, when they 

precede a proper noun: President Wilson, Ju^ge John R. 
Holt (but John R. Holt, judge of the circuit court). Avoid 
long, awkward titles before a name, such as State Super- 
intendent of Public Property Jones. 

4. Distinguishing parts of names of associations, societies, leagues, 

companies, roads, lines, and incorporated bodies: Louisiana 
State university, First National bank, Union Trust com- 
pany, Northwestern line, Epworth Methodist church, First 
Wisconsin volunteers. 


5. Common nouns when they precede the distinguishing parts in 

names of associations, societies, companies, etc.: University 
of Wisconsin, Association of Collegiate Alumnae, Bank of 

6. Only proper noun in geographical names, except when the com- 

mon noun precedes : Rock river, Fox lake ; but Lake Michi- 
gan, Gulf of Mexico. 

7. Only the distinguishing parts of names of streets, avenues, boule- 

vards, buildings, houses, hotels, theaters, stations, wards, 
districts, counties, etc.: Pinckney street, Northwestern sta- 
tion, Grand hotel, Third ward, Second district. 

8. Schools, colleges and other main divisions of a university, but 

not departments: College of Agriculture, Law school, but 
department of astronomy. 

9. Names of religious denominations, and nouns and pronouns of 

the deity. 

10. Names of all political parties : Republican, Bolshevist, Socialist. 

11. Sections of the country: the North, the Middle West. 

12. Abbreviations of college degrees : M. A., LL. D., Ph. D. 

13. Names of sections of a city: the East side; and distinguishing 

parts of nicknames of states and cities: the Buckeye state, 
the Windy city. 

14. Distinguishing parts of names of holidays : Fourth of July, New 

Year's day. 

15. Names of all races and nationalities : Indians, Caucasian, Negro. 

16. Nicknames of athletic dubs and teams: the White Sox, the 


17. Avoid all capitalization not absolutely necessary. 

Do Not Capitalize: 

1 8. Names of national, state, and city bodies, buildings, officers, 

boards, etc. : congress, senate, assembly, department of jus- 
tice, tax commission, budget committee, postoffice, city hall, 
common council, capitol. 

19. Points of the compass : east, northwest. 

20. Common religious terms: bible, scripture, gospels, heathen. 

21. Names of school or college studies, except names of languages : 

biology, French. 

22. Titles when they follow the name: Henry Wilson, Professor of 


23. Abbreviations of time of day: a. m., p. m.; but 12 M. 

24. Names of college classes : sophomore, senior. 


25. College degrees when spelled out: bachelor of arts: but B. A* 

Ph. D. 

26. Seasons of the year : spring, autumn. 

y?. Name of offices in list of officers, as in election of officers : The 
new officers are: John C. Walter, president, etc. 

28. The following nouns after a proper noun : street, avenue, boule- 

vard, place, building, depot, hotel, station, theater, ward, 
county, district, etc. 


29. Omit period after "per cent" and after nicknames (Tom, Sam, 


30. Use a comma before "and" in a list, red, white, and blue. 

31. Punctuate lists of names with cities or states thus: Messrs. 

Arnold Woll, Racine; R. G. Davitt, Beloit; etc. Punctuate 
list of names with offices after a colon thus: J. S. Hall, 
president; Henry Stoltz, vice-president. 

32. Use a colon after a statement introducing a direct quotation of 

one or more paragraphs, and begin a new paragraph for the 
quotation. Use a colon after "as follows." 

33. Never use a colon after viz., to wit, namely, e. g. f i. e., except 

when they end a paragraph. Use colon, dash or semicolon 
before them and comma after them, thus : This is the man ; 
to wit, the victim. 

34. Do not use a comma between a man's name and "Jr." or "Sr." 

35. Use an apostrophe with year of college classes: Class of '87, 

John White '01. 

36. Do not use a hyphen in "today" and "tomorrow." 

37. Use a hyphen in compound numbers: thirty-two. 

38. Use no apostrophe in making plurals of figures and letters: 

early QOS, three Rs. 

39. Use no apostrophe in such abbreviations as Frisco, varsity, 

phone, bus. 

40. Use an em dash after a man's name placed at the begflnning in 

series of interviews: Henry Keith I have nothing to say. 
(Use no quotation marks with this form.) 

41. Use no comma in "6 feet 3 inches tall", "3 years 6 months old", 


42. In sporting news punctuate thus: Score: Wisconsin 8, Chicago 

3. zoo-yard dash Smith, first : Hanks, second. Time 
6:10 1-5. Peters ran thirty yards to the 10-yard line. 



43. All verbatim quotations when they are to be set in the same 

type and measure as the context, but not when they are 
to be in smaller type or narrower measure. 

44. All testimony, conversation, and interviews given in direct form, 

except when name of speaker, or Q. and A., with a dash, 
precedes, as : John Keith I have nothing to say ; Q. What 
is your name? A. Oscar Brown. 

45. Names of books, dramas, paintings, statuary, operas, songs, sub- 

jects of lectures, sermons, toasts, magazine articles, includ- 
ing the initial "A" or "The" : "A Man Without a Country." 

46. Nicknames used before surnames : "AP Harris, ("Slim") Hall. 

47. Use single quotation marks for quotations within a quotation. 

48. Use quotation marks at the beginning of each paragraph of a 

continuous quotation of several paragraphs, but at the end 
of the last paragraph only. 

Do Not Quote: 

49. Names of characters in plays: Shylock in 'The Merchant of 


50. Names of newspapers or periodicals : the Springfield Republican. 

51. Names of vessels, horses, dogs, automobiles. 

Use Figures For: 

52. Numbers of 100 or over, except in the case of approximate num- 

bers, as "about a hundred men." 

53. Numbers under 100 only in the following cases: 

54. Hours of the day: 7 p. m., at 8:30 this morning. 

55. Days of the month, omitting d, th, st: April 29, 1913; July I. 

56. Ages : he was 12 years old ; 2-year-old James. 

57. All dimensions, prices, degrees of temperature, per cents, dates, 

votes, times in races, scores, etc. : 3 feet long, $3 a yard, 78 
degrees, 95 per cent. 

58. All sums of money (with dollar mark or cents) : $24, 5.06, 75 


59. Street and room numbers: 1324 Grand avenue, 67 University 



60. When used in close connection with numbers over 100: 133 boys 

and 56 girls. 

61. Do not begin a sentence with figures; supply a word or spell 



62. The following titles and no others, when they precede a name: 

Rev., Dr., Mr., Mrs., M., Mme., Mile., Prof, (before a full 
name only: Prof. E. G. Hunt, but Professor Hunt), and 
military titles, except sergeant, corporal, and chaplain. 
Never write Pres. Coolidge, Vice-Pres. Dawes, or Sen* 

63. Names of states, only when they follow names of cities : Madi- 

son, Wis. (but never "a citizen of Wis."). 

64. "Number" before figures: No. 24. 

65. Saint and Mount in proper names, but not Fort: St John, but 

Fort Wayne. 

Do Not Abbreviate: 

66. Railway, company, street, avenue, district, etc.: Chicago and 

Northwestern railway, State street, A. B. Hall company. 
(Railway and railroad may be abbreviated when initials are 
used: C M. & St. P. Ry.) 

67. Christian names like William, Charles, Thomas, John, Alex- 


68. The titles, congressman, senator, representative, president, secre- 

tary, treasurer, etc., preceding a name. 

69. Names of months except in dates and date lines. 

70. Years ('97 for 1897), except in referring to college classes, etc. 

71. Christmas in the form Xmas. 

72. Per cent: 15 per cent (not 15%). 

73. Cents: 75 cents (not 75 cts. or 75 c.). 

74. Avoid colloquial abbreviations like "prof," "libe," "agrics." 

Dates and Date Lines 

75. In dates, write Jan. 12, 1914 (not the i2th of January, or U 


76. Punctuate date lines thus: 

MADISON, Wis., Feb. n. Fire destroyed the, etc. 
Omit state after names of prominent cities. Abbreviate months 
of more than five letters. Omit year and d, st, th (after 
figures). Begin the story immediately after dash on same 



77. Write addresses thus: 

Frank D. Miles, 136 Oilman street. Hiram Swenk, Cuba 
City Wis. 

78. Omit "at" and "of" before address. Do not abbreviate or capi- 

talize street, avenue, etc. Spell out numbered streets up to 


79. Always give initials or first names of persons the first time they 

appear in a story. 

80. Never use only one initial ; use both or first name : J. H. Ward, 

John H. Ward, or John Ward (not J. Ward). Do not use 
nicknames except in sporting news or in the form John 
("Spike") Brown. 

81. Never use Mr. with initials or first name: Mr. Ward (not Mr. 

John Ward). 

82. Give first name of unmarried woman, not initials only: Miss 

Mary R. Snow (not Miss M. R. Snow). 

83. Always use the title Miss before unmarried women's names and 

Mrs. before married women's. 

84. Begin list of unmarried women with "Misses," and one of mar- 

ried women with "Mesdames," giving first name of un- 
married women, and husband's first name or initials with 
married women's names. Begin lists of men's names with 

85. Supply "the" before Rev.; supply Mr. if first name is omitted: 

the Rev. S. R. Hart, or the Rev. Mr. Hart (not Rev. S. R. 
Hart, the Rev. Hart, or Rev. Hart). 

86. Write Mr. and Mrs. Arthur S. Miles (not Arthur S. Miles and 


87. Write Prof, and Mrs. Henry Wilton (not Mr. and Mrs. Prof. 

'Henry Wilton). 

88. Give the title professor only to members of faculty of profes- 

sorial rank: use "Mr." when necessary with names of in- 
structors and assistants. 

89. Avoid long titles, such as Superintendent of Public Instruction 


90. Never use the title "Honorable", or "Hon." 


General Directions 

Preparation of Copy: 

1. Write legibly; use a typewriter whenever possible. 

2. Never write on both sides of the sheet. 

3. Double space your typewritten and longhand copy. 

4. Use 8% xii soft white copy paper for all your work. 

5. Begin your story about the middle of the first page. 

6. Number sheets at the top of the page and enclose the numbers 

in a circle. 

7. Put the end mark ($) at the close of every complete story. 

8. Enclose all quotation marks in half circles. 

9. Underscore "u's" and overscore "n's" in longhand copy. 


10. Indent each paragraph about two inches. 

11. Remember that the length of paragraphs in newspapers does 

not normally exceed 100 words, and generally ranges from 
25 to 70 words. 

12. Put an important idea at the beginning of the first sentence 

of each paragraph. 

13. Avoid beginning successive paragraphs with the same word, 

phrase, or construction. 

14. Don't put important details in the last paragraph where they 

may be cut off in make-up. 

15. Make separate paragraphs of introductory statements like "He 

said in part," "The report is as follows," and end them with 

16. Set off as a separate paragraph a direct quotation of more than 

one sentence without explanatory material, at the beginning 
of a story. 


17. Make evident the construction of every sentence so that it may 

be read rapidly. 

18. Avoid choppy, disconnected short sentences. 

19. Don't overload the first sentence of a summary lead, by crowd* 

ing in unessential details. 
JO. Put an important idea at the beginning of every sentence. 



21. Avoid words that are likely to be unfamiliar to the average 

reader, unless you explain them in your story. 

22. Don't use trite phrases. 

23. Use superlatives sparingly. 

24. Use slang only when circumstances demand it. 

25. Find the one noun to express the idea, the one adjective, if 

necessary, to qualify it, and the one verb to give it life. 


26. Remember that the truth and nothing but the truth, interest- 

ingly presented, makes the best news story. 

27. Don't try to make cleverness a substitute for truth. 

28. Don't forget that faking is lying. 

29. Realize that every mistake you make hurts some one. 

30. Remember that what you write for newspaper publication is 

read by thousands and helps to influence public opinion. 

31. Be especially careful about names, initials, and addresses. 

32. Get all the news; don't stop with half of it. 

33. Don't give rumors as facts. 

34. Be fair and unbiased; give both sides of the case. 

35. Don't misrepresent by playing up a statement that, taken from 

its context, is misleading. 

36. Don't make the necessity for speed an excuse for carelessness 

and inaccuracy. 


Reporting and News Writing 

BLEYER, W. G., Newspaper Writing and Editing (Houghton 
Mifflin), 1913; Revised, 1923. 

BLEYER, W. G., Types of News Writing (Houghton Mifflin), 

CUNLIFFE and LOMER, Writing of Today (Century), 1915, 1922. 

HARRINGTON and FRAN KEN BERG, Essentials of Journalism 
(Ginn), 1912; Revised, 1924. 

HARRINGTON, H. F., Typical Newspaper Stories (Ginn), 1915. 

HYDE, G. M., Newspaper Reporting and Correspondence (Ap- 
plet on), 1912. 

HYDE, G. M., Handbook for Newspaper Workers (Appleton), 
1921; Enlarged, 1925. 

MILLER, O. W., Practical Exercises in News Writing and Edit" 
ing (Heath), 1922. 

Ross, C G., The Writing of News (Holt), 1911. 

SPENCER, M. L., News Writing (Heath), 1917. 

Copyreading, Headlines, Proofreading 

BASTIAN, G. C., Editing the Day's News (Macmillan), 1923. 

CONVERSE and BRYSON, Copyreading Exercises (Iowa State Col- 
lege, Ames). 

HENRY, F. S., Printing for School and Shop (Wiley, London), 

HYDE, G. M., Newspaper Editing (Appleton), 1915; Revised, 

RADDER, N. J., Newspaper Make-up and Headlines (McGraw- 
Hill), 1924. 

SMITH, A. M., Exercises in Proofreading (]. C. Winston, Phila- 
delphia), 1904. 



Editorial Writing, Collections of Editorials 

Casual Essays of the [N. Y.] Sun (R. G. Cooke), 1905. 
CRANE, FRANK, War and Government (Lane), 1915. 
Editorials from Hearst Newspapers (International), 1906. 
FLINT, L. N., The Editorial (Appleton), 1920. 
HEATON, J. L., Story of a Page [N. Y. World}, (Harpers), 

KROCK, A., Editorials of Henry Watterson (Doran), 1923. 
MACKAIL, J. W., Modern Essays [London Times], (Long- 

mans), 1915. 
MAHIN, H. O., Editorials of William AUen White (Macmillan), 


National Floodmarks [Collier's], (Doran), 1915. 
NEAL, R. W., Editorials and Editorial Writing (Home Corres. 

School), 1921. 
POLLAK, G., Fifty Years of American Idealism [Nation], 

(Houghton Miffiin), 1915. 

Special Feature Articles 

BLEYER, W. G., How to Write Special Feature Articles (Hough- 

ton, Mifflin), 1919. 

CUSHING, C. P., // You Don't Write Fiction (McBride), 1920. 
WILDMAN, E., Writing to Sell (Appleton), 1923. 

Country Weekly and Community Newspaper 

ATWOOD, M. V., The Country Newspaper (McClurg), 1923. 
BING, P. C., The Country Weekly (Appleton), 1917. 
BYXBEE, O. F., Establishing a Newspaper (Inland Printer), 

HARRIS, E. P., and HOOKE, F. H., The Community Newspaper 

(Appleton), 1923. 
MUNSON, A. J., Making a Country Newspaper (Dominion Co., 

Chicago), 1899. 

Descriptions of Newspaper Work 

DIBLEE, G. B., The Newspaper (Holt), 1913. 
GIVEN, J. L., Making a Newspaper (Holt), 1907. 


HEMSTREET, C, Reporting for Newspapers (Wessels), 1901. 
LUCE, R., Writing for the Press (Clipping Bureau, Boston), 


SHUMAN, E. L., Practical Journalism (Appleton), 1903. 
SYNON, J. D., The English Press and Its Story (Seeley Service), 


WARREN, L., English Journalism (Cecil Palmer, London), 1922, 
WILLIAMS and MARTIN, Practice of Journalism (Stephens), 

1911; Revised, 1922. 

Personal Experiences in Journalism 

BANKS, E. L., Autobiography of a Newspaper Girl (Dodd, 


BLYTHE, S., Making of a Newspaper Man (Altemus), 1912. 
COBB, IRVIN, Myself To Date [Stickfuls], (Doran), 1923. 
GIBBS, P., Adventures in (English) Journalism (Harpers), 1923. 
RALPH, J., Making a Journalist (Harpers), 1903. 
RUSSELL, C. E., These Shifting Scenes. 
STONE, M. E., Fifty Years a Journalist. 
WATTERSON, H., Marse Henry (Doran), 1919. 

History of American Journalism 

HUDSON, F., Journalism in United States, 16901872 (Harper), 

LEE, J. M., History of American Journalism (Hough ton Mif- 

flin), 1923. 
PAYNE, G. H., History of Journalism in U. S. (Appleton), 1920. 

Histories of American Newspapers 

DAVIS, ELMER, History of N. Y. Times (N. Y. Times), 1921. 
NEVINS, A., The [N. Y.] Evening Post (Boni & Liveright), 

1922. * 

O'BRIEN, R M., Story of the [N. Y.} Sun (Doran), I9I& 
The W. G. N. (Chicago Tribune), 1922. 

Biographies of American Newspaper Editor* 

GODWIN, P., WMam CuOen Bryant IN. Y. Post}, (Apptetoa) t 


HARRIS, J. C, Life of Henry W. Brady [Atlanta Constitution], 

(Cassell), 1890. 

LINN, W. A., Horace Greeley (Appleton), 1903. 
MAVERICK, A., Henry J. Raymond [N. Y. Times], 1870. 
MERRIAM, G. S., Life and Times of Samuel Bowles [Springfield 

Republican], (Century), 1885. 
NELSON, W., Story of a Man^a Newspaper, and a City [K. C. 

Star], 1915. 
OGDEN, R., Life and Letters of E. L. Godkin [N. Y. Post], 

(Macmillan), 1907. 

PARTON, J., Life of Horace Greeley (Houghton Mifflin), 1896. 
(PRAY, I. C), Memoirs of James G. Bennett (Stringers), 1855. 
WILSON, J. H., Life of Charles A. Dana [N. Y. Sun]. 

Journalism as a Vocation 

LEE, J. M., Opportunities in Newspaper Business (Harper), 


LORD, C S., Young Man and Journalism (Macmillan), 1922. 
SEITZ, D., Training for the Newspaper Trade (Lippincott), 1916. 
WILLIAM, T., The Newspaper Man (Scribner), 1922. 

Journalistic Writing in High Schools 

DILLON, C, Journalism in High Schools (Noble), 1918. 
FLINT, L. N., Newspaper Writing in High Schools (U. of 


HARRINGTON, H. F., Writing for Print (Heath), 1922. 
HYDE, G. M., A Course in Journalistic Writing (Appleton), 


Law of the Press 

HALE, W. G., The Law of the Press (West Pub. Co.,), 1923.- 
HENDERSON, W. G., Newspapers and Libel (Chemical Bank 

Note Co.,), 1915. 
LOOMIS, W. W., Newspaper Law (Citizens Pub. Co., LaGrange, 

III), 1922. 

Principles, Philosophy, and Ethics of Journalism 

ANGELL, N., Press and Organisation of Society (Labour Pub. 
Co., London), 


BLEYER, W. G., The Profession of Journalism (Atlantic Mon. 

Press), 1918. 

CRAWFORD, N. A., The Ethics of Journalism (Knopf), 1924. 
FLINT, L. N,, The Conscience of the Newspaper (Appleton), 

HAPGOOD, N., Ethics of Journalism [Every Day Ethics], (Yale 

U. Press), 1910. 
HOLT, H., Commercialism and Journalism (Houghton MifHin)*, 


LIPPMANN, W., Public Opinion (Harcourt, Brace), 1922. 
LIPPMANN, W., Liberty and the News (Harcourt, Brace), 1920. 
Report of First National Newspaper Conference (U. of Wiscon- 

sin), 1912. 
ROGERS, J. E., The American Newspaper (U. of Chicago Press), 

SALMON, L., The Newspaper and the Historian (Oxford U. 

Press), 1923. 
SINCLAIR, U., The Brass Check (published by author, Pasadena, 


THORPE, MERLE, The Coming Newspaper (Holt), 1915. 
VILLARD, O. G., Some Newspapers and Newspapermen (Knopf), 

YOST, C, The Principles of Journalism (Appleton), 1924. 

Freedom of the Press, Censorship, Etc. 

BROWNRIGG, SIR D., Indiscretions of Naval Censor (English), 

(Cassell), 1920. 

CHAFEE, Z., Freedom of Speech (Harcourt, Brace), 1920. 
COOK, SIR E., The Press in War Time (English). 
LYTTON, N., The Press and the General Staff (English). 
SALMON, L. M., The Newspaper and Authority (Oxford U. 

Press), 1924. 

Advertising, Circulation, Publishing 

BLANCH ARD, F. L., Essentials of Advertising (McGraw-Hill). 
CHASNOFF, J. E., Selling Advertising Space (Ronald Press), 

HALL, S. R., Writing on 'Advertisement (Houghton Mifffin), 

HALL, S. R., Advertisers? Handbook (Inter. Corres. School). 


HERROLD, L. D., Advertising for the Retailer (Appleton), 1923* 

ROGERS, J., Newspaper Building (Harpers), 1918. 

ROGERS, J., Newspaper Making (Author), 1922. 

ROGERS, J., BuUding Newspaper Advertising (Harpers), 1919. 

SAMPSON, E., Advertize! (Heath), 1918. 

SCOTT, W. R., Scientific Circulation Management (Ronald 

Press), 1915. 

STARCH, D., Advertising (Scott, Foresman), 1914. 
STARCH, D., Principles of Advertising, 1923. 

Advertising (Ronald), 1921. 

Fiction Dealing with Journalism 

ABBOTT, W. J., Philip Derby, Reporter (Dodd, Mead), 1922. 
ADAMS, S. H., The Clarion (Houghton Mifflin), 1914. 
ADAMS, S. H., The Common Cause (Houghton Mifflin), 1919. 
ADAMS, S. H., Success (Houghton Mifflin), 1921. 
COURLANDER, A., Mightier than the Sword (Unwin, London), 

DAVIS, R. H., Gallegher and Other Stories (Scribner), 1892. 

FERBER, E., Dawn O'Hara (Stokes), 1911. 

GEORGE, W. L., Caliban (Harpers), 1920. 

GIBBS, P., The Street of Adventure (Button), 1919. 

JORDAN, E., Tales of the City Room (Scribner), 1898. 

MONTAGUE, C. E., A Hind Let Loose (English). 

O'BRIEN, H. V., Thirty (Dodd, Mead), 1915. 

SMITH, H. J., Deadlines (Covici-McGee, Chicago), 1922. 

WHITE, W, A., In Our Town. 

WILLIAMS, J. L., The Stolen Story (Scribner), 1899. 


BLEYER, W. G., Profession of Journalism (Atlantic Monthly 

Prfes), 1918. 
ELY, M., Some Great American Newspaper Editors (H. W. 

Wilson), 1916. 
PAYNE, G. H., History of Journalism in the United States (Ap- 

pleton), 1920. 
STOCKETTE, J. C., Masters of American Journalism (H. W. Wil- 

son), 1916. 
WIBDIR, C, Daily Newspapers m U. S. (H. W. Wilson), 1916. 


Abbreviation, 31, 41, 44, 175, 3Qi J 
in headlines, 123, 144. 

Accuracy, 33, 46, 156, 176, 387* 

Active voice, 68, 122, 133, 136. 

Adams press, 307. 

"Add" catchline, 14, 88, 92, 238. 

Addresses, 33, 44, 392. 

Addressing machines, 366. 

Adjectives, 40, 61, 153 

Adverbs, 36, 61, 122, 135 

Advertisements, 191, 210, 211, 
346, 360. 

Advertising, contract, 364; head- 
lines, 99, 162, 188; manager, 6; 
rates, 361 

Agate, 267, 269, 361. 

Alignment, 182, 185, 292. 

"All in hand," 92, 195- 

"All up," 92, 195. 

"Alleged," 75. 

Allegorical headlines, 122, 141. 

Alliteration in headlines, 122, 140. 

Almanacs, S3. 

Ambiguity in headlines, 123, 151. 

Analysis of newspaper, 22. 

Anonymous headlines, 123, 151. 

Antecedents, 35. 

Antique, paper, 339; type, 273. 

Apostrophe, 41, *43, *74, 389. 

Applegate press, 309. 

Aquatint etchings, 324. 

Art department, n, 91* 164, 326. 

Articles, 122, 139. 

Assignment, 9, n ; book, 250. 

Associated Press, 233. 

Associations, press, 232. 

Automobile page, 219. 

Autoplate, 16, 300; junior, 300, 
Auxiliaries, 36. 

Back page, 189, 211, 215, 219. 

"Backing in," 227. 

Balanced page, 206. 

Bank, 104, 109, 123, 146; men, 7 

Banner headline, 99, 162, 200, 209, 


Beat, 9, 91, 227. 
Ben Day shading, 223, 323. 
Bibliography, 395. 
Bill head, 365. 
Binding, 344. 

Biographical syndicates, 244. 
Black-face type, 272. 
Black-letter type, 273. 
Blaew press, 305. 
Blanket, head, 163, 217; sheet, 


Block paragraph, 61. 
Bodge, 265. 
Bodoni, 109, 199, 273. 
Body, of type, 271; type, 197, 

267, 272. 
Bogus, 91, 195- 
"Boiled" story, 249, 252. 
"Boiler plate," 242, 302. 
Boiling, 65, 80. 

Bold type, 31, *73, 198, 272, 279. 
Books, on journalism, 395; of 

reference, 47, 53; style, 42, 142, 


Borders, 275. 
Bourgeois type, 197, 267, 270. 




Box, 198, 375, 379; headline, 167; 

in type case, 276. 
Break, line, 104; over, 16, 91, 160, 

193, 303- 

Brevier type, 197, 267, 269. 
Brilliant type, 267, 269. 
Broken type, 173, 182. 
Bug, 167. 
Bulletin, 95, 99, 100, 163, 200, 


Bullock press, 311. 
Bureau, 235. 
Business manager, 6, 359. 
"Butchering copy," 79, 80. 
By-lines, 90, 167. 

Cable, 10, 25, 239. 

Calendered paper, 338. 

Canon type, 267. 

Capitalization, 31, 33, 43, 44, 109, 
123, 125, 146, 173, 179, 198, 
272, 276, 279, 387- 

Captions, 27, 166, 223. 

Caret, 32, 175, W- 

Cartoons, n, 205, 215, 326. 

Case of type, 276. 

Caslon, 109, 199, 273, 280. 

Catchlines, 12, 87, 238. 

Centered, 104. 

Chalk plates, 317. 

Chase, 15, 190, 185. 

Chemical pulp paper, 337. 

Cheltenham, 109, 100, 273. 

Church text type, 273. 

Circulation, 6, 101, 200, 215, 266. 

Circus ntake-up, 207. 

City, editor, 9, 25, 192; press as- 
sociation, 241. 

Civil War, 98, 233. 

Clean copy, 92. 

Clippings, 3- 

Closed up, 195. 

Clymer-Columbian press, 307* 

Coinage of words, 66, 95. 

College newspapers, 329. 

Colloquialisms, 68, 122, 139, 202. 

Collotype, 324. 

Colon, 40, 142, 173, 389- 

"Color," 62, 152, 156. 

Color, engraving, 321; in paper 

336; printing, 312. 
Coloroto, 324. 
Columbian type, 267. 
Column, rules, 180, 274; width, 

189, 210, 269, 279, 340. 
Combination desk, 26. 
Comics, 220, 223, 326. 
Comma, 39, 44, 142, 173, 389. 
Comment, 34, 61, 152. 
Complex sentence, 39. 
Composition, 7, 184, 275, 283, 

297, 343- 

Compound sentence, 39. 

Condensed type, 271. 

Condensing, 80. 

Conference, editorial, 192. 

Conjunction, 35, 39. 

Constructive journalism, 20. 

Contractions in headlines, 122, 139. 

Contracts, 364, 370. 

Copperplate, 324; paper, 339. 

Copy, 122, 277, 352, 393; 
"butcher," 79, 80; cutting, 7, 
14, 80; desk, 10, 25; preparing 
for printer, 85; record, 354. 

Copyholder, 172. 

Copyreader, 9, 12, 19; record, 12, 

Copyreading, 24, 354; sample, 3*; 
signs, 29. 

Copyright, 346. 

Correspondent, 123, 150, 232. 

Cost of printing, 329. 

Counter punch, 284. 

Counting headline letters, 122, 124. 

Courtesy, 71, 150. 

Cover, 344. 

Credit line, 245. 

Crossline, 104, 112, 118, 126. 

Cut-off rule, 163, 196* 204, 275. 



Cuts, 166, 244. 317, &H, 331, 343; Drop, head, 167; line, 104, 1x2, 

lines, 166, 167. 
Cutting in make-up, 34, 60, 128. 
Cylinder press, 307. 

126, 200. 
Dummy, 15, 91, 191, 348, 356. 
Duodecimo fold, 333. 
Duplex press, 301, 313. 

Dandy roll, 338. 
Dangling participles, 35. 
Dash, 40, 143, 145, 174, 275, 38o. 
Date, 33, 44. 5*, 39* J line, 10, 44, 

237, 391. 
Deadline, 195, 
Deckle-edge, 339. 
Decks, 97, 102, 126, 199; combi- 
nation or interrelation, 108, 122, 


"Dele," 175- 
Department, I, i&9 2 213; editors, 

9, 10 ; headlines, 87; men, 9. 
Desk men, 9, 19, 25. 
Diagram of make-up, 190, 340, 


Diamond type, 267, 269. 

Diction, 34, 62, 122, 137. 

Digest, news, 166. 

Dignity, 34, 69, 139, ISO- 

Digraph, 38. 

Dingbat, 167, 275- 

Dinky dash, 167. 

Dirty, case, 183, 277; proof, 177- 

Display, 104, 142, 188, 198, 200, 
212; type, 267, 272, 279- 

Dissymmetrical page, 207. 

Distributing type, 277, 289. 

Division of words, 123, 146. 

Divisional heads, 165. 

Double, English type, 267 ; leaded, 
274, 299; measure, 198, 279; 
octuple press, 313; pica type, 
267; rule, 275; sextuple press, 
313; supplement press, 312. 

"Down" style, 43, 45- 

Dragon's blood, 317* 

Dramatic critic, n, 73, 218. 

"Dress up" page, 163, aoi. 

Ears, 195. 

Ease of reading, 60, 101, 188, 19^ 
201, 224. 

Editions, 114, 193. 

Editor-in-chief, 8, 192. 

Editorial, 96, 159, 160, 214, 215, 
220, 340; department, 7; 
writers, 8. 

Electro, 171, 304, 344; electro- 
type, 303. 

Em, 174, 270, 274- 

Emphasis, 34, 55, 225, 252; head- 
line, 138, 147; paragraph, 64; 
sentence, 63. 

Enameled paper, 338. 

End mark, 13, 14, 32, 89, 237. 

English, language, 21, 27, 71, 217; 
type, 267. 

Engraving, 204, 222, 317; depart- 
ment, 7, 331, 343- 

Envelopes, 366. 

Errors, in editing, 23 ; expression, 
33; grammar, 33; proofread- 
ing, 182; punctuation, 33, 40; 
spelling, 37; style, 33, 43; vari- 
ous sets, 185. 

Esparto paper, 337. 

Estimating space, 84. 

Ethics, 5, 20, 66, 69, 96, 142, 156, 
201, 217. 

European press associations, 234, 

Evidence, 49. 

Excelsior type, 267. 

Exchange editor, 10, ix, 91. 

Exclusive, 91. 

Expanding stories, 82. 

Extended type, 109, 271* 

Extra-condensed type, 109, 271. 



Face of type, 197, a$3* spx, 284. 

Facts, 48, 157- 

False quotation, 158. 

Families, type, 373. 

Fashions, 218. 

Fat headlines, 116, 124, 127, 263. 

Feature, in stories, 12, 33, 55, 57, 

59, 102, 129, 250; non-news, 

215, 227, 246. 
Figures, 31, 33, 44, 5*. "3, *45, 

175, 348, 390. 
Filing editor, 236. 
Fillers, 91, 195, 220. 
Fillet, 273. 
Filter, 321. 
Flag, 163, 167. 
Flash, 91, 238, 239. 
Flat bed press, 308, 315. 
Flong, 299. 

Flush headline, 104, 107. 
Focused page, 207. 
Fold, 167, 196, 200. 
Folding, 311, 332, 344. 
Folio, 333J head, 342. 
"Follow," catchline, 14, 88, 92, 

238; copy, 91; leader, 55; story, 

57, 92, 129, 150, 165, 248, 254. 
Font, 173, 276. 
Foreign news, 234. 
Form, 195, 261, 333J proof, 171, 


Fractions, 40. 
Franklin, 307. 
Frisket, 306. 
Front page, 189, 193, 196, 203, 

205, 211, 226. 

Fudge, 16, 195, 316. 
Furniture^ printing, 274. 

German text type, 273. 
Gothic type, 109, 199, 373- 
Government, 45, 70, 73, 76. 
Grammatical errors, 33, 34, 62, 

122, 129. 

Great Primer type, 267. 
Gripper, 308. 

Guide lines, 13, 27, 87, 238. 
Gutenberg, 307. 

Hairlines, 184, 275, 292. 

Half, measure, 279; stick, 91. 

Half-tone, 205, 223, 299, 318, 336, 

Hand press, 305. 

Hanging indention, 104, 106, 126, 
142, 218, 279. 

Headline, 9, 13, 58, 87, 95, IPS, 
342, 358; banner or streamer, 
99, 162, 200; building, no; 
jump, 109, 1 60, 193; readers, 
95, 200; schedule, 87, 103, no, 
126, 129, 278; spread, 99, 164, 


Hearst services, 234. 
Heel nick, 263. 
Height of type, 264. 
Hell-box, 277. 

Helter-skelter make-up, 207. 
High-school newspapers, 329. 
Hints, headline diction, 138; style 

sheet, 46. 

Hoe presses, 309, 3", 3". 
Hold for release, 91. 
Hooked, 91. 

Humor, headline, 123, 153. 
Hyphen, 40* 174- 

Galley, 14, 170, 276; proof, 170, 

190, 276. 

General manager, 5. 
Generalities in headlines, 123, 


Ideals in newspaper work, 5, 20, 
66, 69, 96, 142, 156, aoi, 217. 
Illustrations, n, 204, 222, 343- 
Imperative headline, 122, 136. 



Inaccuracy, 33, 46, 156, 176, 387, 

Indention, 126, 174, 198, 218, 274. 


Index of news, 44, 166. 
Infinitive, 36, 122, 135. 
Inserts, 30, 77, 88, 173, 175, 179, 

181, 184. 

Intaglio, 315, 323, 324- 
International news service, 234. 
Intertype machine, 297. 
Interviews, 49, SO, 95- 
Iron hand press, 307. 
Italic type, 31, 173, 272, 279. 

Jargon, headline, 70, 122, 141, 

144, iSS. 
Jim dash, 167. 
Job press, 314. 
Journalese, 69. 
Journalism, books, 395; school, 

328, 387. 

Jump head, 109, 160, 193, 211. 
Junior, autoplate, 300; linotype, 


Justification, 180, 195, 267, 274, 
286, 3S7J linotype, 181, 290; 
monotype, 185, 293. 

Lead of story, 27, 33, 55. 5$, 95. 

99, 128, 250, 256. 
Leaded, 175, 179, 191. 195, 198, 

266, 271, 274, 299. 
Leaders, 217, 275. 
Leased wire, 227, 235, 
Leaves, 333- 
Length, headline, 122 ; paragraph, 

64; sentence, 62; story, 220, 
Letter-spacing, 174, 274. 
Libel, libelous, 19, 26, 34, 51, 72, 


Librarian, n. 
Ligature, 174, 276. 
Line engraving, 223, 317. 
Lining series, 268. 
Linograph, 297. 
Linotype, 7, 181, 184, 198, 279, 

288; junior, 297. 
List, punctuation of, 39. 
Lithograph, 309, 313, 324- 
Loaded paper, 339. 
Local, news field, 49, 52, 225; 

staff, 9, 90. 
Locking up, 195. 
Logotype, 276. 
Long primer type, 267, 270. 
Loop, telegraph, 237. 
Lower case, 31, no, 125, 173, 199, 


Key address, 360. 

Kill, 91. 

Koenig press, 307. 

Label headings, 97, 123, 149- 
Laffan Press service, 234. 
Laid paper, 338. 
Lanston monotype, 292. 
Lap line, 104. 
Laws, 76. 

Laying the foundation, 249. 
Layout, 164, 201, 326. 

Machine-finished paper, 338. 
Magazine, 24, 171, 187, 245, 313. 
Mailing machine, 7, 366. 
Major headlines, 109, 200. 
Make-ready, 171, 315, 320. 
Make-up, 60, 87, I*, 160, 171, 

187; diagram, 190, 340, 355- 
Managing editor, 9, 15, 190. 
Margins, 30, 85, 172, 176, 279, 339- 
Market, editor, 11, 26; section, 

89, 214, 219. 
Masthead, 167. 
Mat, service, 301 ; stereotype, 299, 



Matrix, 293; grid, 293; linotype, 
289; service, 244, 301; stereo- 
type, 16, 299; type, 284. 

Mechanical pulp paper, 337. 

Mergenthaler linotype, 288. 

Mezzotint engraving, 325. 

Microscopique type, 267. 

Minion type, 197* 267, 269. 

Miscellany, 91. 

Misrepresentation, 49. 

Missal type, 273. 

Mo, 333- 

Modern type, 273. 

Monotype machine, 185, 292. 

"More to come," 13, 14, 89, 238. 

Morgue, n, 54, *44, 302. 

Morkrum telegraph printer, 237 

"Mr.," "Mrs.," and "Miss," 45, 
7i, 144. 

Multiplate, 300. 

Multiple rotary press, 312. 

Music, critic, n; engraving, 326. 

"Must" copy, 91. 

Mustang mailer, 367. 

Mutton quad, 274. 

220; of words per inch, 280; 
of words per line, 280. 
Nut quad, 274. 

Obituaries, n, 135, 144, 214, 219, 


Oblique lines, 31, 179, 
Octavo, 333. 
Octuple press, 313. 
"Off its feets," 195. 
Office style, 26, 42, 52, 180. 
Offset, 310, 314, 324; printing, 


Old English type, 273. 
Old style type, 273. 
Opinion, 34, 61, 152. 
Opposition paper, 55, 224. 
Originality, 142. 
Overlays, 309, 3*5. 
Overlines, 166. 
Overplaying news, 158, 163, 188, 


Naraeplate, 167, 195. 

Names, use of, 50, 123, 150. 

Neatness, 77, 177- 

Negative, photo, 317. 

News, 5, 213; digests, 44, 166; 

editor, 10, 16, 190; staff, 8, 9; 

story, 54, 98; values, 54. 
News contents bill, 100, 162. 
Newsboy or stand sale, 101, 162, 

189, 200, 209. 
Nick in tyfce, 263, 276. 
Nicknames, 34, 69, 70, 150. 
Non-news features, 215, 227, 246. 
Nonpareil type, 197, 265, 267, 269. 
Nouns, 34, 40, 42, 66, 131, 153- 
Number, of columns, 209; of 

lines per inch, 280; of pages, 

aio, 332, 334; of stories, 202, 

Page, back, 189, 211, 215, 219; 
diagram, 190, 340, 355 ; dummy, 
15, 9i, 191, 348, 356; front, 
189, 193, 196, 203, 205, 211, 
226; proof, 171, 359J size, 331. 

Paging, 171, 356. 

Paper, 331, 336; making, 337; 
size, 331. 

Papier-mache, matrix, 16, 299; 
stereotyping, 310. 

Paragon type, 267. 

Paragraphs, 31, 34, 55, 60, 64, 
78, 175, 393- 

Participles, 37, 122, 135. 

Passive voice, 68, 122, 133, 136. 

Patent insides, 242, 317. 

Pearl type, 267, 269. 

Pelt balls, 305. 

Perfecting, 308, 310. 



Perforating rule, 275. 

Period, 41, 142, 173* 

Personal journalism, 90. 

Photo-engraving, 204, 317. 

Photograph, 11, 205, 222; syndi- 
cate, 205, 222, 243. 

Photogravure, 323, 325. 

Pi, 277. 

Pica type, 265, 267, 269, 270. 

"Pick up," 91. 

Planing down, 195. 

Plaster stereotyping, 208. 

Plate, matter, 242, 302; paper, 
339; service, 242, 301. 

Platen, 305. 

Playing up feature, 12, 55, 59, 
226, 227, 250. 

Point system, 266. 

Policy, 80, 96, 142, 156, 159, 203, 


Pony service, 234, 236. 

Postal rates, 368. 

Power press, 307. 

Prejudices, stock, 49. 

Press association, 90, 217, 232. 

Press, 210, 304; box, 238; men, 

7; work, 171, 232. 
Printing presses, 16, 210, 304; 

processes, 282. 
Privilege, libel, 73. 
Pronouns, 35. 
Proof, 15, 276, 353, 359, 364; 

marks, 173 ; reading, 7, 28, 170. 
Pulling proof, 170, 276. 
Punch, 63, 285. 
Punctuation, 33, 38, 123, 142, 143, 

173, 389. 

"Put to bed," 15, 195- 
Pyramid, deck, 104, 106, 119, 126, 

142; page, 212; story, 55; top 

deck, 108. 

Quad, 274- 
Quadruple press, 312. 

Quarto, 333- 

Query, 175. 

Questions, in headlines, 123, 143, 


Qui etes-vous?, 53. 
Quoins, 195. 
Quotation marks, 31, 44, 50, 58, 

174, 390; in headlines, 123, 144, 


Radio, 219. 

Rag paper, 337. 

Railroad editor, II. 

Rate, advertising, 361 ; card, 362. 

Ready-made advertisements, 242. 

Ready-prints, 242, 317. 

Real estate editor, u. 

Ream, 336. 

Record, copy, 354; copy cutter's, 

14; copyreader's, 12, 27. 
Red ink, proofreading, 179. 
Reference books, 47, 53. 
Register, 323. 
Reglet, 274. 
Rehash, 249. 
Relative clause, 36. 
Relay, 236. 
Release, 91, 237. 
Relief, relievo, 315, 324. 
Rembrandt photogravure, 325. 
Renaissance photogravure, 325. 
Repetition of words, headline, 

122, 138. 

Replate edition, 195. 
Reporter, 9. 
Reprint, 91. 
Retouching, 223. 
"Rev.," 44. 

Reversed letters, 173, 183. 
Revising, 28; proof, 15, 30, 170^ 

173,276; type, 290, 296. 
Rewrite, man, 248; story, 248, 

Rhyme, headlines, 122, 140. 



Ribbon, 163. 

Rim man, 26. 

Ripped open, 194, 195. 

Roman type, 173, 272. 

Rotary press, 16, 210, 311. 

Rotogravure, 323. 

Rounce, 306. 

Routed out, 223, 319. 

"Rubber stamp 1 ' writing, 69, 142. 

Rule, 274. 

Run around, 91. 

Run-in line, 32, 78. 

Runs, 9; on press, 332. 

Safeguards against inaccuracy, 

Schedule, 91, 103, 114, 192. 

Scheme of type, 276. 

School of journalism, 328, 387. 

Scoop, 91, 227, 233. 

Screen, half-tone, 223, 319. 

Script type, 273. 

Second-class postal rate, 346, 
367, 368. 

Second day story, 57, 67, 92, 129, 
150, 227, 255. 

Semicolon, 39, 173, 389; in head- 
line, 143- 

Sensationalism, 99, 101, 159, 188, 
201, 203, 216, 219. 

Sentence, 34, 39, 62, 393. 

Serial, numbers, 44, 391; story, 

Series of type, 273. 

Serif, 273. 

Set-width, 264, 268, 285. 

Sextuple press, 312. 

Shank, type, 263. 

Shoulder, type, 263. 

Show window, 58. 

Silhouetted cut, 223. 

Size, page, 331 ; type, 197, aft. 

Sizing, paper, 338* 

Skeletonized, 239. 

"Skinned" cable, 239. 

Slang, 34, 70, 91, 122, 139, 144, 


Slant, 95- 
Slot man, 26. 
Slug, 27, 184, 274, *88. 
Slugged, 87, 190. 
Small, capitals, 31, 173, 198, 272, 

279; pica type, 267, 270; publi- 
cations, 328. 
Smith press, 307. 
Society, editor, u, 89; section or 

page, 193, 213, 217. 
Solid, set, 198, 266, 274. 
Sorts, 277, 286, 296. 
Source, news, 57. 
Space, 174, 274; justification, 180. 
Spanish war, 99. 
Specialty, 53- 
Specifying type, 277. 
Speech reports, 50, 59. 
Spelling, 33, 37; simplified, 122, 


Spiked, 91. 
Split-line, 104. 
Sporting, department or page, 89, 

213, 216; editor, 10, 25, 142. 
Spread headline, 99, 164, 201. 
Squared-up type matter, 195, 274. 
Standard, line, 267; paper sizes, 

331; width type, 271. 
Standing, heads, 167; matter, 91. 
Stanhope press, 307. 
Stapling, 331, 345. 
Star-box, 275. 
Starter page, 193, IQS 
Steam table, 16, 299. 
Steel plate engraving, 325. 
Stencil address, 367. 
Step or stepped line, 104. 
Stereotyping, 7, 16, 242, 298, 310. 
"Stet," 91, 175- 
Stickful, 84, 275. 
Stipple work, 323. 
Stone, 92; engraving, 324; make- 

up, 195. 



Stop cylinder press, 308. 
Stop-press news, 195. 
Story syndicates, 245. 
Straightline press, 313. 
Streamer headline, 99, 162. 
Street sales, 101, 162, 189, 200, 


Student publications, 328. 
Style, 34, 62; headline, 142; type, 

272; typographical, 33. 42, 142, 

Style book or sheet, 42, 52, 142, 


Subheads, 27, 165, 202, 217. 

Subordinate headlines, 109. 

Subscription, blanks, 367; lists, 

Summary lead, 27, 33, 55, 5$, 95, 
99, 101, 128, 250, 256. 

Sunday, magazine, 245; supple- 
ment, n, 224, 322. 

Suppression of news, 80. 

Symmetry, 205; headlines, 123, 
156; make-up, 164. 

Syndicate, 217, 221, 227, 231, 241. 

Synonyms, headline, 122, 138, 140, 

"Tacked on" ending, 58. 

Table, 91 ; type, 279. 

Takes, 14, 91, 165, 236, 277- 

Tandem press, 313. 

Teacher-adviser, 329. 

Telegraph, editor, 9, 10, 25, 123, 
150, 192, 227, 231, 236; Mork- 
rum printer, 237; room, 9, 10. 

Tense, 36, 122, 135. 

Terminology, 91. 

Tests, of lead, 56, 58; of libel, 

"That" beginning, 58. 

Thin-faced type, 272. 

"Time" copy, 91. 

Title page, 345. 

Titles, 33, 40, 43, 44, 61, ;x, 167, 
387, 393. 

Toggle-joint, 306. 

"Tombstone" headlines, 200. 

Tooling, 223. 

Top heads, 167. 

Transposition, 31, 36, 174, 179. 

Treadwell press, 307. 

Trial by headline, 159. 

Trim, 331, 345. 

"Trimming" copy, 80. 

Trite words, 68, 142. 

Tudor type, 273. 

Turn story, 92, 211. 

Turned rule, 14, 275. 

Tympan, 306. 

Type, caster, 294; casting, 285; 
founding, 284; making, 284; 
setters, 7, 275, 283 ; setting ma- 
chines, 286. 

Type, kinds of, 173, 261; black 
letter, 273; body, 197, 272, 339 J 
bold, 272; directions, 27, 86; 
headline, 109, 199; high, 264; 
measurement, 264; sizes, 197, 
268, 265; specifications, 277, 

Type-revolving press, 309. 

Typographical style, 33, 4, *4*, 

"U. & L. C," no, 125, 199. 
Underlays, 315, 320. 
Underlines, 167. 
Underscoring, 31. 
Units in headlines, 122, 124. 
United News service, 234. 
United Press service, 234. 
Unitype, 286. 
Universal desk, 26. 
Universal News service, 234. 
"Unskinned" cable, 239- 
Upper case, 31, 73, o, 125, I 


"Up" styles, 43, 45- 

Verbs, 34, 61, 67, 102, 

Vignette, 223. 

Voice, 68, 122, 133, 136. 


Walter press, 311. 

Want-ad, 5- 

War's effect on newspapers, 99, 


Washington hand press, 307. 
Waste of space, headlines, I55- 
Watermark, 338. 
Web paper, 310. 
Weekly syndicate service, 245. 
Weight, paper, 236; type, 275- 
Wer Ist's, S3- 
White space, 198, 299. 

Who's Who, 51, 53, 83. 
Witness, 49. 

Woman's page, 193, 194, 218. 
Wood, cut, 204, 317 ; fiber paper, 

337; pulp paper, 337. 
"Wooden" headlines, 123, 149. 
Word Diet, 69, 142, I5S- 
Wordiness, 34, 65. 
Words, 34, 62, 394; headline, 137. 
World War, 99, 163, 200, 210. 
Wove paper, 338. 
Wrapper, 212, 219, 366. 
Wrong face, 173, 183, 77. 

Yellow journalism, 101. 

Zinc etching or engraving, 318. 




The information the newspaper man wants, presented 
so he can get at it. No iactor of effective writing and 
good newspaper practice is omitted. 


Practical suggestion on the fundamentals of news- 
paper writing which the reporter must master in his 
first few weeks. 


The tools and methods of the copy editor, his oppor- 
tunities, and how the results of his work count in the 
paper. New Edition. 


Interesting instruction and thorough drill in the clear, 
effective English composition which is the basis of good 
newspaper style.