New-York Historical Society logo

Guide to the Time Inc. People Editorial Files
1966-1989
 MS 3009-RG 10

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
(212) 873-3400


New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Collection processed by Melanie Rinehart.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on April 18, 2019
English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Time, inc.
Title: Time Inc. People Editorial Records
Dates [inclusive]: 1966-1989
Abstract: The People Editorial Records contain records from offices and staff from the editorial side of the magazine, not the publishing or business side. Editorial staff represented include Cranston Jones, Lee Wohlfert, Marianne Macy, Martha Babcock, Sarah Rozen, Richard Stolley, and Dick Lemon.
Quantity: 6 Linear Feet (6 boxes)
Call Phrase: MS 3009-RG 10
Sponsor: The processing of the Time Inc. Records was made possible by a generous grant from the Henry Luce Foundation.

Return to Top »


Biographical / Historical

People magazine was launched as a newsstand-only publication on March 4, 1974, with Richard Durrell as founding publisher.  People was created under the Magazine Development Group, divesting and becoming its own department by 1978. The Magazine Development Group, Time Inc.'s in-house publishing idea think tank, had previously successfully launched  Money magazine in 1972.  People magazine exceeded sales of one million copies per issue by July 1974.

For the majority of Time Inc.'s existence, the company maintained a strict separation of editorial from the publishing and business side of each magazine, colloquially called the separation of "church" (editorial) and "state" (publishing). Editorial includes the editors, researchers, and art department. The editorial side reported up to the editor-in-chief and the publishing/business side reported up to the corporate business executive which was the president prior to 1960 and the chief executive officer after. Henry Luce structured Time Inc. this way so that the business side could not (in theory) influence the editorial content of the publications. For example, the advertising sales people could not interfere with a magazine's decision to run an article on the dangers of cigarette smoking, even though it might mean losing millions of dollars in tobacco ads.

Citation:

Hooper, Bill. Email to Holly Deakyne, 10 June 2016.

Return to Top »


Scope and Contents

The People Editorial Records contain records from offices and staff from the editorial side of the magazine, not the publishing or business side. Editorial staff represented include Cranston Jones, Lee Wohlfert, Marianne Macy, Martha Babcock, Sarah Rozen, Richard Stolley, and Dick Lemon.

Records include memoranda, correspondence, book drafts for Best of People, article research, copies of books used in Wohlfert's research, news clippings, photographs, publishing budgets, Home Box Office's (HBO)  Best of People television special script, and article drafts.

Arrangement

The materials within the Time Inc. Subject Files record group are organized into three series based on hierarchy of job titles with general office files at the end:

Series I. Senior Editor Cranston Jones Files on Best of People

Series II. Writer Lee Wohlfert Files

Series III. People Magazine 50th Television Anniversary Issue Files

Return to Top »


Access Points

Subject Names

  • Jones, Cranston, 1918-1991
  • Wohlfert, Lee

Document Type

  • Books
  • Corporation records
  • Magazines (periodicals)
  • Organization files

Subject Topics

  • Corporations -- History
  • Corporations -- New York (State) -- New York.
  • Journalists -- United States
  • Publishers and publishing -- New York (State) -- New York.
  • Time, inc -- History

Return to Top »


Administrative Information

Custodial History

Gift of Time, Inc. in 2015.

Access Restrictions

Open to qualified researchers with the exception of restricted materials. Materials created within the past 35 years also may be subject to restriction on a case-by-case basis. Materials are stored offsite and advance notice is required for use.

Use Restrictions

This collection is owned by the New-York Historical Society. The copyright law of the United States governs the making of photocopies and protects unpublished materials as well as published materials. Unpublished materials created before January 1, 1978 cannot be quoted in publication without permission of the copyright holder. Photocopying undertaken by staff only. Limited to 20 exposures of stable, unbound material per day.

Preferred Citation

This record group should be cited as Time Inc. People Editorial Records, MS 3009-RG 10, New-York Historical Society.

Related Materials

This finding aid relates to just one record group of the Time Inc. Records. For information about the other records groups and overall information about the archives, please see the Guide to the Time Inc. Records (MS 3009). The collection of books acquired with the records are cataloged as the Time Inc. Reference Library.

Processing Information

The People Editorial Records were processed and described in 2018 by Melanie Rinehart. The original folders were retained although some documents were transferred to archival containers in instances of overcrowding. Melanie Rinehart created the inventory and other descriptive notes to produce this finding aid.

Return to Top »


Container List

Series I. Senior Editor Cranston Jones Files on Best of People, 1977-1984. 1 Linear Feet (1 box)

Biographical / Historical

Cranston Jones was a staff member of Time from 1945 to 1969, serving variously as a correspondent in San Francisco, London and Paris and as bureau chief in Rio de Janeiro. He was editor in chief of  Travel and Leisure magazine for several years and then a senior editor with  People from its founding in 1974 until he retired in 1988.

Best of People: The First Decade was a retrospective of notable  People covers, subjects, and articles from 1974 to 1983. It was published in softcover by Ballantine Books, an imprint of Random House; a hardcover edition was published by Time-Life Books.

Citation:

Flint, Peter B. "Cranston Jones, 73, Architecture Author And Writer at Time." New York Times. June 03, 1991. Accessed November 16, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/1991/06/03/obituaries/cranston-jones-73-architecture-author-and-writer-at-time.html.

Scope and Contents

The Cranston Jones Files on Best of People include materials such as memoranda, correspondence, book drafts, Table of Contents, publishing budgets, Home Box Office's (HBO)  Best of People television special script, founding  People managing editor Richard Stolley's book introduction, weekly progress reports, and legal correspondence regarding obtaining photographic and distribution rights out of the United States. Notable correspondents are: Stolley; editor Pat Ryan; and publisher Richard Durrell.

People Polls refers to results of an annual nationwide reader survey on celebrities, politics, fashion, and culture.  People Staff Polls refers to an internal survey on what should be included in the book.

Correspondence includes some with Amanda Urban, the project's literary agent at International Creative Management, Inc. (ICM). Amanda is also sometimes referred to as "Binky".

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by folder title.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 1 Amanda Urban at International Creative Management (ICM)
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 2 Artists
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 3 Ballantine Books
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 4 Budgets
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 5 C. Jones File: Correspondence
1983-1984
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 6 Contents: Expanded Version for Publisher's Presentation
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 7 Correspondence: Best of People
1983-1984
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 8 Copyright/Title Page
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 9 Covers
1982-1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 10 Covers: The Great Covers: Mega 25
1982-1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 11 Home Box Office (HBO)
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 12-13 Introduction by Richard B. Stolley
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 14 Legal
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 15 Letters
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 16 Mega Celebs: The Decade's 25
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 17 People Polls
1980-1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 18 People Staff Polls
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 19 Super Star Tracks
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 20 Table of Contents Draft
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 21 Time-Life Books
1983-1984
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 22 Weekly Progress Report
1983
Offsite-Box: 2847 Folder : 23 Winners and Losers
1977-1983

Return to Top »


Series II. Writer Lee Wohlfert Files, 1979-1983. 2 Linear Feet (3 boxes)

Biographical / Historical

Lee Wohlfert started as a People magazine writer in 1974 and was made Assistant Editor in February 1983. She continued to write articles following her promotion and the materials in this series are concerned only with her writing. She is credited as Lee Wohlfert-Wihlborg in the  People masthead. Wolhfert also freelanced for publications such as  Town & Country,  Harper's Bazaaar, and  LA Style.

She left People in 1986, but continued to freelance for the magazine until 1990. While she published under the last names "Wohlfert" and "Wohlfert-Wihlborg" after 1983, she currently goes by Wohlfert.

Citation:

Wohlfert, Lee. User profile, LinkedIn. Accessed November 16, 2018. https://www.linkedin.com/in/lee-wohlfert-07982619/.

Scope and Contents

Materials are from Lee Wohlfert's time as a People writer, including article drafts and research, news clippings, memorandum, photographs of Arthur Hailey for a 1973 profile, and materials for Miss America Pageant officials. Also includes copies of books by Stephen Gaskin, Tom Wolfe, and Jacqueline and Lee Bouvier; these were used for article research. The articles-related materials are focused on culture and fashion, including published interviews with Sean Young, Diane Von Furstenberg, and Lee Radziwell. Miss America Pageant materials cover the national level and Mississippi. Some notebooks are included in the general articles research with interview questions and thoughts inside; one untitled, undated notebook was found unassociated with any materials and is foldered by itself.

Includes a copy of Wohlfert's 1978 interview with Anne Beats about Saturday Night Live (SNL) published in  Your Place magazine, a McCall's publication aimed at young people of both sexes that was published for only five issues. It is unconnected to Time Inc., and the interview was done as a freelance assignment. Wohlfert continued to collect information on the SNL cast through 1979, including internal memos with  People editor Jim Seymore about getting an interview with some of the notoriously press-shy cast.

Arrangement

Arranged alphabetically by folder title.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Offsite-Box: 2844 Folder : 1-8 Articles
1971-1983
Offsite-Box: 2844 Folder : 9-10 Articles: Casablancas
1983
Offsite-Box: 2844 Folder : 11 Articles: Lyngstad, Anna-Frid
1982-1983
Offsite-Box: 2844 Folder : 12 Articles: Miss America Pageant: General
1983
Offsite-Box: 2844 Folder : 13-14 Articles: Miss America Pageant: Mississippi
1983
Offsite-Box: 2844 Folder : 15-16 Articles: Miss America Pageant: Official's Materials
1983
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 1-2 Articles: Radziwill, Lee
1974-1976
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 3 Articles: Saturday Night Live
1978-1979
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 4 Articles: Von Furstenberg, Diane
1981-1982
Offsite-Box: 2846 Folder : 1 Bovier, Jacqueline and Lee: One Special Summer
1974
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 5 Gaskin, Stephen: Hey, Beatnik! and  Monday Night Class
1974
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 6 Notebook
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 7 Photographs of Arthur Hailey
1973
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 8 Wolfe, Tom: In Our Time
1980
Offsite-Box: 2845 Folder : 9 Your Place Magazine
1978 October

Return to Top »


Series III. People Magazine Television Anniversary Issue Files, 1966-1989. 2 Linear Feet (2 boxes)

Biographical / Historical

The People Magazine Television Anniversary Issue was published in May 1989 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first television broadcast in 1939. Materials were gathered by staff research-reporters starting in 1989, with the first draft of the magazine presented in January 1989. Starting with 7000 photographs and innumerable topics to include, the team edited the material to 750 photos on 129 pages and the cover, along with accompanying articles. Senior editor Richard Sanders and Dick Lemon led the team, with Sarah Rozen doing much of the photographic research. Eight writers composed the text, with three reporter-researchers conducting fact checks.

Citation:

Valk, Elizabeth P. "Publisher's Letter." PEOPLE.com. May 4, 1989. Accessed November 19, 2018. https://people.com/archive/publishers-letter/.

Scope and Contents

The People Television Anniversary Issue Files include memoranda from staff such as Marianne Macy, Martha Babcock, and Sarah Rozen to Dick Lemon and the People Reporting Staff. Topics include personalities to include in the special and photograph usage. Background research, table of contents drafts, and interview transcripts are included. Interviews were conducted with choice people from the history of television for a section called "Voices". Notable interviewees include Mike Wallace, Bob Pittman, and Ruth Warrick.

Publishing drafts of articles are included. Most are concerned with a specific person, notably Carol Burnett, Mary Tyler Moore, and Johnny Carson. There were articles written on decades from the 1960s to the 1980s, and on genres such as advertising, westerns, game shows and soap operas.

The files seem to have been gathered from the special issue staff during the course of publishing by Senior Editors Dick Lemon or Richard Sanders, or Executive Editor Jim Seymour.

Arrangement

Materials are in original alphabetical order.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 1 Acts
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 2 Ads
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 3 Alda, Alan
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 4 Archie
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 5 Arness, James
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 6 Assignments
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 7 Beaver
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 8 Belushi, John
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 9 Berle, Milton
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 10 Broadcast Industry Future
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 11 Brooks, Mel
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 12 Burnett, Carol
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 13 Caesar, Sid
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 14 Carney, Art
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 15 Carson, Johnny
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 16 Clark, Dick
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 17 Cosby, Bill
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 18 Cronkite, Walter
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 19 Cult Shows
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 20 Fawcett, Farrah
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 21 Game Shows
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 22 Garner, James
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 23 Gleason, Jackie
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 24 Hagman, Larry
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 25 History of Sex on TV
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 26 Interviews
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 27 Introduction
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 28 Janssen, David
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 29 Kermit
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 30 Kid's Shows
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 31 Kovacs, Ernie
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 32 Johnson, Don
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 33 Letterman, David
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 34 Locals
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 35 Lucy
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 36 Marshall, Garry
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 37 McLuhan, Marshal
1966-1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 38 Memorable Moments on TV
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 39 Miller, Nolan
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 40 Moore, Mary Tyler
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 41 News
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 42 Parr, Jack
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 43 Photo List for Sex on TV
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 44 Pittman, Bob
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 45 Question for Sex in TV
1989
Offsite-Box: 2848 Folder : 46 Reagan, Ronald
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 1 Silverman, Fred
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 2 Soaps
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 3 Sports
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 4 Sullivan, Ed
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 5 Walters, Barbara
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 6 Wolfer, David
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 7 The '40s
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 8 '40s Timeline
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 9-10 The '50s
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 11 '50s Timeline
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 12 '50s Westerns
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 13-14 The '60s
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 15 '60s Timeline
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 16 The '70s
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 17 '70s Timeline
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 18 The '80s
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 19 '80s Timeline
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 20-22 "Voices" Interviews
1989
Offsite-Box: 2849 Folder : 23-24 "Voices" Section
1989

Return to Top »


Return to Top »