Publishers-Hall Syndicate

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The Hall Syndicate's Pogo (May 31, 1964)

Publishers-Hall Syndicate was a newspaper syndicate founded in 1944 by Robert M. Hall, the company's president and general manager.

Hall had worked for The Providence Journal during high school, followed by three years at Northeastern Law School and four years at Brown University. After attending the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, he was a sales manager at United Feature Syndicate, which he joined in 1935.

WWII years[edit]

During the final months of World War II, Hall began his own syndicate by distributing to newspapers several New York Post features, including Earl Wilson's "It Happened Last Night," Sylvia Porter's finance column, "Your Money's Worth" and Samuel Grafton's "I'd Rather Be Right." Soon, Hall developed his own features, including a variety of comic strips, Debbie Dean, Mark Trail and Bruce Gentry, along with Herblock's editorial cartoons. Added to the mix were serialized books and columns, including Elise Morrow's "Capital Capers," Pierre de Rohan's "Man in the Kitchen," Sterling North's book reviews, Jimmy Cannon's sports column and Major George Fielding Eliot writing on defense and tactics.

Post-war years[edit]

The company was incorporated as the New York Post Syndicate in August 1946. New features added in 1948-49 included Walt Kelly's Pogo, the adventure strip Tex Austin, Victor Riesel's "Inside Labor" column and a facts panel, Wizard of Odds.[1]

On March 1, 1949, the company was renamed as the Post-Hall Syndicate, Inc., and during the 1950s, it distributed the writings of Norman Vincent Peale.

Walt Kelly's 1967 caricatures of Robert Hall and the Hall Syndicate cartoonists. To see the details in this image, go here.

The name was shortened to the Hall Syndicate after Robert Hall bought out the Post in 1955. Jules Feiffer's strips ran for 42 years in The Village Voice, first under the title Sick Sick Sick, briefly as Feiffer's Fables and finally as simply Feiffer. Influenced by UPA and William Steig, the strip debuted October 24, 1956. Three years later, beginning April 1959, Feiffer was distributed nationally by the Hall Syndicate, initially in The Boston Globe, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Newark Star-Ledger and Long Island Press.[2][3]

In 1967, the company was sold to Field Enterprises, who merged it with the previously acquired Publishers Syndicate to form the Publishers-Hall Syndicate . Columnists featured by Publishers-Hall Syndicate included Rowland Evans Jr., Joseph Kraft and Sydney J. Harris. John McMeel was assistant general manager and national sales director for the Publishers-Hall Syndicate when he began what would become Andrews McMeel Universal in 1970.[4] It was later renamed Field Newspaper Syndicate.

In yet another name change, it was renamed News America Syndicate after the company was purchased by News Corporation in 1984. Hearst bought the syndicate in 1986 and renamed it North America Syndicate. It is now part of Hearst's syndication division, King Features Syndicate.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Post Syndicate Name Changed; It's Post-Hall," Editor & Publisher, March 19, 1949.
  2. ^ Feiffer, Jules. Explainers: The Complete Village Voice Strips (1956-1966), Fantagraphics Books, 2008.
  3. ^ "The Press: Sick, Sick, Well," Time, February 9, 1959.
  4. ^ Andrews McMeel Universal history.
  5. ^ King Features Syndicate profile. via Hearst Corporation