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John B. OakesJohn B. Oakes
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Editorial in the sense of managerial in the broadest newspaper sense, that is correct.


Did you miss the reporting part of it?


To some degree, yes. I loved reporting, especially at the Capitol in Washington. I really enjoyed that. I certainly did miss that to some degree, but on the other hand, having something to say about what was actually going into the paper and types of articles, what should or shouldn't go in, and deciding where it should go in and where it shouldn't, and making that kind of judgment, appealed to me a good deal too. A good deal more, I should say, than the actual writing or working on the “Summary,” on the front two pages. I tended more and more to devote attention to the back of the book.

And I was doing this job when I was asked in the early spring of '49-somewhat less than three years after I came on to the “Review of the Week”-if I wanted to join the editorial staff of the Times. An opening had occurred there, and Mr. [Arthur H.] Sulzberger asked me if I cared to take that. I turned it down; I said I didn't think I would. I continued with the “Review of the Week” for two or three more months.

Another opportunity arose to join the editorial staff of the Times and by that time I decided I would definitely do it. So, actually in May, which was three years almost to the day, I guess, that I came to “Review of the Week,” I did finally come to the editorial staff.


Why did you turn it down the first time?

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