Scripps, James E. ; Founder Detroit News. Portrait

1938-05-24

Portrait of James E. Scripps, former news reporter and publisher of the Detroit News. "In 1873, James E. Scripps decided to tap this growing class of working men and women by launching a new newspaper, The Evening News. He filled the paper with inexpensive advertising and instructed his reporters to write "like people talk," his competitors called The News "a cheap rag" and labeled his reporters "pirates," but Detroiters loved it, and it made Scripps rich ... in 1889, recognizing the demand by art-starved Detroiters, Scripps decided to buy and donate 70 European paintings to the Detroit museum, the most famous are Rubens' "Meeting of David and Abigail" and a tryptich by the Italian gothic artist Allegretto Nuzi, the value of the entire collection donated by Scripps was about $75,000, a considerable sum in those days ... Scripps had four children, daughter Ellen Warren Scripps (1863-1948) married George Gough Booth, who also worked at the newspaper and was involved in the founding of the Booth Newspaper chain, another daughter, Anna Virginia (1866-1953), married Edgar Bancroft Whitcomb ... a third daughter, Grace Messenger, married Rex Brainard Clark, whose grandson Peter B. Clark was publisher of The Detroit News when it was acquired by the Gannett Co. Inc. in 1986, James Scripps' only son, William Edmund Scripps (1882-1952), married Nina Amenda Downey and had four children," from Detroit News article "James E. Scripps and Detroit's art museum," by Vivian M. Baulch.


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