The Word - Media

Ted Poston

Ted Poston was an African-American journalist who played a significant role in breaking down racial barriers in the field of journalism. He was born on July 4, 1906, in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, and died on January 26, 1974. Poston’s career spanned several decades, during which he covered major events and issues related to African Americans and civil rights. He is best known for his work as a reporter and editor for the New York Post, making him the first full-time African-American journalist at a mainstream white newspaper in the United States.

Ted Poston worked in Washington, D.C., when he was part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “Black Cabinet” during World War II and headed the Negro News Desk in the Office of War Information.

In the 1930s, Poston began his career as a reporter for the Pittsburgh Courier, one of the leading African-American newspapers at the time. He covered stories related to racial discrimination, segregation, and political activism. Poston’s reporting often sheds light on the harsh realities faced by African Americans in various parts of the country.

In 1935, Poston joined the New York Post, where he spent most of his career. He covered a wide range of topics, including racial violence, labor issues, and political developments. Poston’s reporting was known for its depth, accuracy, and commitment to highlighting the experiences of African Americans. As an African-American journalist working in a predominantly white newsroom, Poston faced numerous challenges and instances of racism. However, he persevered and continued to produce impactful journalism that helped shape public opinion and advance the cause of civil rights. Poston’s work not only focused on domestic issues but also extended to international events, such as his coverage of the Nuremberg Trials in Germany after World War II.

A man with glasses (Ted Poston) sits at an office desk holding a letter. A smiling woman (his assistant Harriette Easterlin) sits next to him and a man (his assistant William Clark) leans over them both. A poster behind them depicts a soldier and reads “We are fighting the Axis, not each other” and “New Zealand”.

Throughout his career, Poston received several accolades and awards for his contributions to journalism and civil rights. His reporting and commitment to racial equality paved the way for future generations of African-American journalists and helped create more opportunities for marginalized voices in the media.

Ted Poston’s journalistic legacy continues to inspire and his work remains an important part of African-American history and the history of American journalism.

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