Marquette University Press is pleased to announce the inauguration of a new book series from the Diederich College of Communication entitled Diederich Studies in Communication and Media.
The editor of the series is DR. BONNIE S. BRENNEN, Nieman Professor of Journalism, in the Department of Journalism
The second half of the 20th century was golden for American newspapers. Before the Internet, cell phones, the era of cable television and the 24-hour news cycle, they were the primary sources of information for everyone, including the other news media. They had matured from the earlier growing pains of the penny press and political partisanship to epitomize the responsible journalism idealized in the concept of the Fourth Estate in a democracy.
They continue to do so despite hard times brought on by changing reading habits, still practicing solid day-to-day reporting and investigations of issues and stories of importance to the American people. The earlier yellow journalism functions have largely been taken over by Internet bloggers and the ideological talking heads of tabloid television.
In the golden era, The Milwaukee Journal was one of the finest and most successful newspapers in the country. Its reporters, editors and writers enjoyed national reputations and its photography staff was the best of any newspaper anywhere. Representatives of publications from all over the world traveled to Milwaukee to study the Journal’s pioneering efforts in photojournalism and run-of-the press color.
This book is the story of one reporter, Frank A. Aukofer, who started in the printing trade, graduated from the Marquette University College of Journalism and was proud to spend his entire 40-year career as a Journal reporter, for 10 years in Milwaukee and 30 years in the Washington bureau. In those four decades, he covered many of the historic events of the latter 20th century, including the civil rights movement in the 1960s and the impeachment proceedings against Presidents Richard M. Nixon and William J. Clinton, as well as an array of other stories.
This is his account, mostly memoir and part autobiography, of those historic times, the incredible variety of experiences and the exceptional people he met and reported on. As he recounts, it was always interesting, sometimes dramatic, exciting or frightening, but always a learning experience. It is why he never had a slow day.
Frank A. Aukofer is the retired Washington bureau chief of The Milwaukee Journal and its successor, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He is married with four children and 10 grandchildren, and lives in Falls Church, Va.