Finding aid created by: KM
Date: Feb 1989
|30 Apr 2008||converted to EAD (AMCon)|
|19 Oct 2018||converted from SC to regular collection (MRC)|
Overview of the Collection
|Creator:||Arkell, W. J. (William J.), 1856-1930.|
|Title:||William J. Arkell Papers|
|Quantity:||0.25 linear ft.|
|Abstract:||Papers of the American publisher, journalist. One commemorative menu, rest is business and personal correspondence, largely in connection with the Judge, a weekly magazine of wit and humor which began publication in 1881 in New York. Correspondents include August Belmont, James G. Blaine, George W. Childs, Charles A. Dana, Chauncey M. Depew, Joseph W. Drexel, Stephen B. Elkins, Joseph B. Foraker, George Jay Gould, David B. Hill, Collis P. Huntington, Robert Ingersoll, Levi P. Morton, John C. New, Bill Nye, William W. Phelps, Thomas B. Reed, Whitelaw Reid, Samuel Sloan, Cornelius Vanderbilt, and William Kissam Vanderbilt.|
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010
William J. Arkell (1860-1930) was an American publisher and journalist from Canajoharie, New York. His publishing company, founded by his father, owned and published Judge, Frank Leslie's Illustrated Weekly, Demarest Magazine, and other popular American newspapers and magazines of the time.
The Judge was a weekly satirical magazine established in 1881 by former artists of the popular weekly Puck. Arkell purchased it in 1885 and used it in part to attack the Democratic administration of Grover Cleveland. Republican support boosted the magazine's circulation and by the early 1890s it reached 50,000. Cartoonists Eugene Zimmerman, Bernard Gillam, Art Young, Richard Outcault and James Montgomery Flagg were regular contributors.
Arkell sold his magazine interests in 1905 and moved from New York City to California, where he ventured into stock brokering and horse racing, organized the George Washington Coffee Company, and was active in politics. His brother, Bartlett Arkell, was founder of the Beech-Nut Packing Company and its president for 50 years.
[Portions of this biographical sketch adapted from William J. Arkell's obituary in the New York Times, Dec 31, 1930, p. 18.]
The William J. Arkell Papers is comprised chiefly of incoming Correspondence written to the publisher of Judge, a weekly magazine of wit and humor which began publication in 1881 in New York. (There is a single outgoing item to Arkell's assistant, Major Merrill.) Arkell's correspondents included many prominent politicians (James Blaine, Chauncey Depew, S. B. Elkins, J. B. Foraker, David B. Hill, Levi P. Morton) and editors (George W. Childs, Charles A. Dana, John C. New, Whitelaw Reid) as well as industrialists and financiers (Joseph W. Drexel, George J. Gould, C. P. Huntington, Samuel Sloan, Cornelius and William K. Vanderbilt). A number of the letters (August Belmont, Foraker, New, Sloan) are replies to requests to provide photographs for the magazine, which featured caricatures and cartoons of the personalities who dominated the American scene at the turn of the century. In addition, the correspondence contains several responses by politicians (Blaine, Robert G. Ingersoll, T. B. Reed) to Arkell's invitations to contribute articles to the Judge, including one from Chauncey Depew (26 Mar. 1886):
Some day when the "Judge" has become the leading recognized organ of public opinion in the United States, and I have become so rich, that I can pursue journalism and literature for occupation and recreation, I shall petition for a column in your journal to exploit the well matured views which I expect then to have upon men and things, and which may be interesting because I will have passed the period when the motives of expediency or ambition will prevent the freest and frankest expressions of opinion upon either public questions or public people.
There are also a few letters (Gould, Vanderbilt) which thank Arkell for providing a free annual pass for the Saratoga, Mt. McGregor and Lake George Railroad.
In addition, there is a single item of Memorabilia: a menu commemorating a dinner given by Arkell to honor John A. Cockerill, managing editor of the New York World. A clipping documenting this journalistic social event is pasted on the verso of the menu.
Correspondence is arranged alphabetically by correspondent.
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Arkell, W. J. (William J.), 1856-1930.
Belmont, August, 1813-1890.
Blaine, James Gillespie, 1830-1893.
Childs, George William, 1829-1894.
Dana, Charles A. (Charles Anderson), 1819-1897.
Depew, Chauncey M. (Chauncey Mitchell), 1834-1928.
Drexel, Joseph Wilhelm, 1833-1888.
Elkins, Stephen B. (Stephen Benton), 1841-1911.
Foraker, Joseph Benson, 1846-1917.
Gould, George Jay, 1864-1923.
Hill, David B. (David Bennett), 1843-1910.
Huntington, Collis Potter, 1821-1900.
Ingersoll, Robert Green, 1833-1899.
Morton, Levi P. (Levi Parsons), 1824-1920.
New, John C.
Nye, Bill, 1850-1896.
Phelps, William Walter, 1839-1894.
Reed, Thomas B. (Thomas Brackett), 1839-1902.
Reid, Whitelaw, 1837-1912.
Sloan, Samuel, 1817-1907.
Vanderbilt, Cornelius, 1843-1899.
Vanderbilt, William K. (William Kissam), 1849-1920.
The Judge (New York, N.Y.)
Journalism -- United States.
Journalists -- United Statese.
Publishers and publishing -- United States.
Genres and Forms
Preferred citation for this material is as follows:
William J. Arkell Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
|Box 1||Belmont, August 1887 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Blaine, James Gillespie 1886 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Childs, George William 1886 - 1 letter (with three enclosures)|
|Box 1||Dana, Charles Anderson 1885, 1886 - 2 letters|
|Box 1||Depew, Chauncey Mitchell 1886 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Drexel, Joseph W. 1885 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Elkins, Stephen Benton 1881, 1886, 1887 - 3 letters|
|Box 1||Foraker, Joseph Benson 1886, 1887 - 2 letters|
|Box 1||Gould, George Jay 1885 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Hill, David Bennett 1888 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Huntington, Collis P. 1887 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Ingersoll, Robert Green 1889 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Malmesbury, James Howard Harris undated - 1 postcard|
|Box 1||Morton, Levi Parsons 1886, undated - 2 letters|
|Box 1||Merrill, (Major) 1886 - 1 outgoing letter|
|Box 1||New, John C. 1888 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Nye, Bill undated - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Phelps, William Walter 1890 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Reed, Thomas Brackett 1890 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Reid, Whitelaw 1886, 1889 - 2 letters|
|Box 1||Sloan, Samuel 1887 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Vanderbilt, Cornelius 1887, 1889, 1894 - 3 letters|
|Box 1||Vanderbilt, William Kissam 1886 - 1 letter|
|Box 1||Unidentified 1886-1891, undated - 4 letters|
|Box 1||Menu - commemoration of dinner given by Arkell to honor John A. Cockerill; clipping pasted on verso|