Mary Howarth (journalist)

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Mary Howarth was a British newspaper editor.

Howarth edited the women's column in the Daily Mail in the late 1890s. In November 1903, she was appointed as the first editor of the Daily Mirror.[1]

Although sometimes described as the first female editor on Fleet Street, she was preceded by Delariviere Manley and Rachel Beer.[2] Almost all the staff at the Mirror were women, proprietor Alfred Harmsworth describing it as a paper "for gentlewomen by gentlewomen".[3]

The first issue sold a relatively healthy 276,000 copies, but was soon down to 25,000.[4] Harmsworth lost confidence in his plan for the paper. He wrote to Hamilton Fyfe to offer him the job of editor. Fyfe replied, confirming that he would be happy to take up the post, as soon as he could resign as editor of the Morning Advertiser.[3]

Howarth returned to her former job at the Mail.[4] Fyfe took up the editorial post early in 1904, sacking almost all the female staff. He relaunched the paper with a focus on printing photographs of events.[3]


  1. ^ Adrian Bingham, Gender, Modernity, and the Popular Press in Inter-War Britain", p.34
  2. ^ Hadley Freeman "Ladies of the press", The Guardian, 16 June 2005
  3. ^ a b c Jeff Wright, "The myth in the Mirror", British Journalism Review, Vol. 14, No. 3, 2003, pages 59-66
  4. ^ a b Dennis Griffiths (ed.) The Encyclopedia of the British Press, 1422-1992, London & Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1992, p.185
Media offices
Preceded by
New position
Editor of the Daily Mirror
November 1903
Succeeded by
Hamilton Fyfe