crown CU Home > Libraries Home
Columbia Center for Oral History Portal >

Oral history interview with George McElroy [electronic resource], 1971.

Creator: McElroy, George Albert, 1922-2006
Project: Black Journalists Oral History Collection.
(see all project interviews)
Phys. Desc. :1 sound file : digital preservation master, WAV files (96 kHz, 24 bit) Transcript: 25 pages
Location: Columbia Center for Oral History
Full CLIO record >>

Biographical Note

George Albert McElroy (1922-2006) was born and raised in Houston, Texas. He served in the United States Navy during World War II and the Korean War. Having been turned away by the University of Texas because of segregation laws, he received a bachelor's degree from Texas Southern University (then known as Texas Southern State University for Negroes). In 1970, he became the first African American to receive a master's degree in journalism from the University of Missouri. He was the first black reporter and columnist for the Houston Post, formerly Texas' largest morning daily. He worked for the Houston Informer for fifty-eight years, serving as Editor Emeritus in his final years.

Scope and Contents

At the beginning of this interview, McElroy notes challenges for the black press, such as the small pool of experienced editors and publishers, lack of advertising, and unsatisfactory salaries. Discussing the outsourcing of the assembly of a newspaper, McElroy notes the importance of having a physical place where a paper is published. He discusses: the impact of white ownership of a black newspaper; the past successes of the black press; the social engagement of black papers at the time of the interview; the white readership of black papers; and the importance of the editorial page. The interview concludes with McElroy's thoughts on the political role of the black press and about the difference between black newspapers in the North and South.


Using this collection

Columbia Center for Oral History

Columbia University
535 West 114th Street
801 Butler Library, Box 20
New York, NY 10027
(212) 854-7083


Columbia Center for Oral History