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Saturday Evening Post


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(1821–1969, 1971–),

Philadelphia weekly, whose first issue appeared August 18, 1821, although beginning in 1897 the cover page has carried the statement that it was founded by Franklin in 1728. Its only connection with Franklin is that it was originally issued from an office at one time occupied by his Pennsylvania Gazette, one of whose later publishers founded the Post. Its original purpose was to furnish light Sunday reading for Philadelphians, and its contributors included Cooper, Poe, N. P. Willis, and Harriet Beecher Stowe. Its modern period did not come until it was purchased by Cyrus H. K. Curtis (1897). It was edited by George Horace Lorimer from 1899 to 1936. He increased its circulation from 1800 to 3,000,000 copies weekly by making it a popular magazine for the average American, and publishing stories with mass appeal. He also emphasized advertising, to which about 60 percent of the c. 125 pages were devoted. A Treasury of selections appeared in 1954. Changing managements tinkered with design, editorial policy, and frequency of issue to offset loss of advertising revenue in the 1960s, but in 1969 the Post succumbed. It was revived as a quarterly in 1971.

Subjects: Literature.


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