Podcast: The Crusading Editor Verne Marshall And His War On Corruption in 1930s Iowa

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Courtesy of The Gazette

Verne Marshall, whose work as editor of the Cedar Rapids Gazette earned the newspaper its only Pulitzer Prize in 1936.

He exposed corruption and helped his newspaper win a Pulitzer Prize in the 1930s. But how one-time Cedar Rapids Gazette Editor Verne Marshall did it was anything but ordinary.

This podcast of an IowaWatch Connection radio report features an extensive interview with Jerry Harrington, who writes about Marshall in his book, “Crusading Iowa Journalism Verne Marshall: Exposing Graft and the 1936 Pulitzer Prize,” published by The History Press.

Verne Marshall. became managing editor of the Cedar Rapids Gazette in 1914 at the same time his father, Harry, was named editor. The younger Marshall previously has worked as either a reporter or editor for three papers: the Cedar Rapids Republican, Sioux City Journal and the Minneapolis Tribune. He served from 1917-18 in a World War I ambulance unit. He returned to The Gazette as managing editor in 1918. Marshall became secretary and editor following his father's death in 1932. He served as editor until 1941, when he was succeeded by Harry Boyd. Marshall died on March 24, 1965, at the age of 74. His son, Clare, was Gazette promotion manager from 1934-44. Photo circa 1946.

Photo courtesy of The Gazette

Verne Marshall. became managing editor of the Cedar Rapids Gazette in 1914 at the same time his father, Harry, was named editor. The younger Marshall previously has worked as either a reporter or editor for three papers: the Cedar Rapids Republican, Sioux City Journal and the Minneapolis Tribune. He served from 1917-18 in a World War I ambulance unit. He returned to The Gazette as managing editor in 1918. Marshall became secretary and editor following his father’s death in 1932. He served as editor until 1941, when he was succeeded by Harry Boyd. Marshall died on March 24, 1965, at the age of 74. His son, Clare, was Gazette promotion manager from 1934-44. Photo circa 1946.

“I think he was probably a difficult person to get along with. He was unafraid of writing anything in the newspaper when he felt he was on the side of righteousness,” Harrington said.

“He was an investigative journalist from the word, ‘go’. And he was dedicated to the proposition that whenever a journalist uncovered any sort of corruption in terms of public officials it was the duty of that newspaper to drive and to investigate and to report and uncover and shine a light on that as best as he could.”

Other IowaWatch Connection podcasts about Iowans who won the Pulitzer Prize in Journalism that might interest you:
IowaWatch Connection Podcast: Removing the Stigma, Part One
IowaWatch Connection Podcast: Removing The Stigma, Part Two
IowaWatch Connection Podcast: The Moment Of Rescue – The Making Of A Pulitzer-Winning Photo
IowaWatch Connection Podcast: The Moment Of Rescue – Reaction To Winning The Prize
IowaWatch Connection Podcast: Winning Pulitzer An “Obituary Changer” In Already Notable Career
Podcast: Full Interview With Pulitzer Prize-Winner Michael Gartner
News Quiz: Iowa Pulitzer Prize Winners for Journalism
IowaWatch Part Of IPTV ‘Profiles In Journalism’ Program

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