“Public relations is far more than handling the press. It is a way of life.”
—Arthur W. Page

 

Edward L. Bernays
Chester Burger
Carl R. Byoir
Moss Kendrix
Arthur W. Page
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Upon his graduation from Harvard in 1905, Page went to work for the World's Work, a magazine published by Doubleday, Page and Co., a company founded in 1899 by his father Walter and F.N. Doubleday. This experience would have a great effect not only on his writing, but also on his social ties and development. His work at the magazine allowed him to come into contact with the likes of James Garfield, the Wright brothers, President Theodore Roosevelt and a vast number of high profile and influential people.

It was at Doubleday that he would begin to write persuasively.

Beginning as a proofreader, Page quickly moved into a writing position, concentrating primarily on issues affecting government and business. It was at Doubleday that he would begin to write persuasively, learning what it would take to motivate the public into action. Later on, this skill would greatly contribute to his success as a public relations counselor.

In 1913, when his father was named ambassador to England, Page became editor of the magazine and used it as a vehicle to campaign for American intervention on the side of the allies during WWI.

In July 1918, Arthur went to England to bring his father home. His father was exhausted. During this period, his brother Frank, as a propaganda officer, produced leaflets for delivery over the enemy lines. and Arthur went to France. He was back home by mid-January 1919, returning to his work at Doubleday, where he sought to remain aware of every aspect of the War. Realizing the U.S. department of State had no formal plan to keep its overseas representatives aware of American business, politics or sentiment, Page would write long letters to his father, keeping him abreast of the goings-on in America. Later, other representatives would come to rely on these letters for information also. This was the beginning of Page's long and successful relationship with the U.S. government.

His relationship with the U.S. government started when he was a reporter for the World's Work. It progressed through his father's role in the Wilson administration. What really got it started, though, was his friendship with his Long Island neighbor, Henry L. Stimson. Even while a student at Harvard, he staged a dinner for the governors of Virginia and Massachusetts and attended Theodore Roosevelt's inauguration in 1904.

Angered and insulted, Page wanted out.

Page was named editor of the World's Work in 1913, and a vice president in 1916, two years before his father's death in late 1918. In 1926 Page's partner F.N. Doubleday wanted to capitalize on a new trend in magazines and insisted on making the World's Work more of a picture book. Angered and insulted by the idea, Page wanted out of the company. In late 1926 he got his chance. Walter Gifford, president of American Telephone & Telegraph Company and a former Harvard classmate offered Page a job as vice president of public relations. Page accepted the position on the condition that he would have a say in the development of company policy; he did not want to be just a figurehead. And, as the story goes, he wasn't...

Doubleday, Page and Company
The AT&T Years 1927 - 1946
WW II and the Years Following
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