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Oral history interview with Russell J. Cowans, 1971.

Creator: Cowans, Russell J.
Project: Black Journalists Oral History Collection.
(see all project interviews)
Phys. Desc. :Transcript: 70 pages Sound recording: 1 sound cassette
Location: Columbia Center for Oral History
Full CLIO record >>

Biographical Note

Russell J. Cowans was born in Chicago, Illinois, on July 29, 1896. Cowans had a successful career as journalist, working primarily as a sports reporter and writing for various publications in Chicago and Detroit, Michigan. These publications included the Detroit Tribune, the Chicago Defender, the Michigan Chronicle, the Detroit News, and the Detroit Free Press.

Scope and Contents

In this interview, Cowans discusses his education and the jobs he held before becoming a newspaperman. He shares memories of racism he experienced at sporting events and the psychological affect journalism had on him. More generally, he details: the successes of the black press and the impact it has had on race relations in America; the treatment of minority news by the white press; the possible future of the black press; and the differences between the black press in the North and the black press in the South.


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