Join the “What Would Murrow Do” fanclub….

Today’s topic is Edward R Murrow.

I have to admit, and I don’t think I’m alone, while I knew of Edward R. Murrow and his association with the roots of broadcasting, until I was in grad school in Dr Tommy Thomason’s J-Lit Review class, I did not have the appreciation for him that I do now. Until then, I had never read more than a paragraph or two, maybe even a chapter, about Murrow.

It is the details of his story that make him so relevant to the state of broadcasting today. Murrow is not only an important figure all journalism students should know well, but he is an inspiration to accept nothing less from yourself and the business of broadcasting. Murrow had to fight many of the same battles that we’re still facing today. That is, in part, why he left the business.

Here’s a quickie Edward R. Murrow Historical Timeline:
•Egbert Roscoe Murrow was born in 1908 in North Carolina
•grew up working on farms and with loggers in Washington state
•got bachelor’s degree from Washington State College
•As head of the Pacific Student Presidents Association, Ed joined up with the
National Student Federation of America, which would eventually lead him to CBS
•1935 Ed was hired as what we would now call a booking producer for CBS radio
•1937 Ed was chosen as the news CBS European director
•March 13, 1938 first Murrow radio report broadcast (from Nazi-occupied Vienna)
•1939 conducted his famous rooftop broadcasts from London during the war
•1941-45 hired a distinguished group of war correspondents known as
“Murrow’s Boys”
•1945, at age 37, Murrow was brought back to the U.S. to run CBS news
•September 29, 1947 began anchoring the radio show Edward R. Murrow with
the News
•1950 Hear It Now radio series begins
•1951 first Murrow television show, See It Now, begins
•1953 Person to Person begins
•1953 See It Now began doing stories that eventually helped bring down McCarthyism. The “famous” McCarthy expose aired March 9, 1954
•1958 Small World begins (the model for current talk shows)

•See It Now was canceled July 1958, Murrow upset

•Gives famous RTNDA speech (see below for link to read the whole thing!)

•1960 Murrow co-anchors one time with Walter Cronkite
•1960 “Harvest of Shame” documentary airs (on Thanksgiving)
•1961 Murrow officially leaves CBS to work for President Kennedy as head of the
United States Information Agency.
•April 27, 1965 Murrow dies at age 57 (two days after his birthday)
Read more about him…


Edward R Murrow’s 1958 famous speech (You’ll really enjoy this and how it seems so current.)

Murrow Wikipedia

Books to start with:

Edward R. Murrow and the Birth of Broadcast Journalism by Bob Edwards

Prime Time: The Life of Edward R. Murrow by Alexander Kendrick


Edward R Murrow: The Collection (This is great. You can watch lots of his stuff!)

Good Night and Good Luck (The George Clooney film)

One Response to “Join the “What Would Murrow Do” fanclub….”
  1. Tommy Thomason says:

    Angele….so: you were paying attention after all! Glad to see that you’re you’re reminding folk of how relevant Murrow’s thinking is today.


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