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Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Andrew HeiskellAndrew Heiskell
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by two families, but the two families had maybe 30 or 40 members to them, and everyone of those people in these two families seemed to have a job at The Star. And the thought of either firing all the Kauffmans' and whoever the others were or keeping all forty of them on the payroll was something that was more than we could undertake.

Now, essentially the story of us and newspapers is a story of disaster [laughter]. I guess the first real serious discussion was with the Newark--what was it, Newark News?


The Newark Evening News.


Newark Evening News, which was owned by a family, the Scudders, and was a paper that had a good reputation. The family's interest had been diverted by their creating a recycling paper mill, which had turned out to be very successful--they recycled newsprint--and they seemed to be willing to sell. I suppose negotiations went on for three to six months, and we got to the point of having a handshake and signing a tentative agreement. And we were all quite excited about it, even--the excitement was a combination of getting into the newspaper business, and also trying to do something with a newspaper in an area that was badly run down, full of racial problems, so on so on. After the handshake, in the process of due diligence, we began to find that the figures that they had given us didn't seem to correspond with anything, any arithmetic that we could discover. And in truth, there was an enormous disparity, not caused as far as we could tell by any dishonesty on the part of anybody, but simply that [laughter] they had very primitive and inaccurate

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