The epilogue paints a portrait of the news industry of the interwar years. Buyouts and mergers produced behemoth newspapers that took the innovations of the preceding decades and refined them into a corporate model with true mass appeal. Yet editors and journalists ceased to experiment with the energy and creativity of their predecessors and instead settled into a comfortable pattern. Metropolitan papers of the 1920s, 30s, and 40s cultivated images of expertise and power consonant with the United States’ rising place in the world. They managed to keep threats from other forms of media, namely radio, at bay. At midcentury, generations of readers still treated newspapers as their primary and most trustworthy sources of news. They thought of their papers as friends, advisers, entertainers, critics, and conduits to the wider world. Though that is no longer true, and the heyday of the metropolitan newspaper is now decidedly over, turn-of-the-century newspapers continue to influence Americans’ expectations of news media.
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