Metropolitan News

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Title: Metropolitan News IIIF collection link
City: Chicago, Ill.
County: Cook
Available online: 7 May 1935 - 27 February 1937 (12 issues)

The Chicago Metropolitan News was a semi-weekly newspaper published on Tuesdays and Fridays, running from 1935 to 1938. The sixteen-page paper was established by Nathan Kellogg McGill, former general manager of the Chicago Defender [LCCN: sn84037018]. McGill, a lawyer, was born on November 29, 1888 in Quincy, Florida to Nathan and Agness McGill. He was Assistant State's Attorney for Cook County from 1925 to 1926, served as Assistant Illinois Attorney General from 1929 to 1933, and in 1930 became the first Black appointee to the Chicago Public Library Board. The paper staffed other former employees of the Defender, including Eneil Simpson, the Defender's former business manager, Henry Brown, the former cartoonist of the Defender and editor of Abbott's Monthly, and Albert Barnett, the Defender's former city editor.

The May 7, 1935 inaugural issue of the Metropolitan News proposed news coverage would be both local and national, and that in addition to general news, the paper would include "the latest happenings of the stage and screen [,] the sports world and the realm of society," as well as "stories of interest by feature writers, cartoons, comics and other special features." Feature writers included Duke Ellington, who wrote an article explaining his style of music for the May 31, 1935 issue, exclusively for the Metropolitan News. A women's section, "Women and their Activities," covered meetings of various women's clubs held at the Federated Women's Club House, meetings of the Phyllis Wheatley Woman's Club and, in the February 27, 1937 issue, a meeting of the newly formed Women's Auxiliary of the Chicago Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

The paper also covered meetings of the Chicago Urban League and the Chicago-Tuskegee club. The February 20, 1937 issue described the paper as the "mouthpiece" of the South Central Community Council, an organization dedicated to developing community businesses. Consulted issues suggest the editor's support of the Democratic party, with several articles dedicated to the rise of Democratic Congressman Arthur W. Mitchell, and the fall of Republican Oscar De Priest. Articles expressed support for Democrat Henry Horner for Governor of Illinois and approval of U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the New Deal.

The frequency of the paper's publication made it a "pioneer in the local field of journalism." In its inaugural issue, its editors claimed the Metropolitan News would meet "popular demand for a paper published with greater frequency than has been the custom in the past and for less money, five cents, and in so doing will present impartially, events as and when they actually happen and not as WE WOULD HAVE THEM HAPPEN." The issue touted the paper's being printed "on the new Duplex press, the only one of its kind in Chicago…which takes the paper from the roll—prints, cuts and folds it—and delivers the finished product ready for the newsstand." The issue also included photographs of the paper's editorial, business, and mechanical departments. In 1938 the title of the paper was changed to the Metropolitan Post (1938-1940) [LCCN: sn2013254318] (Ralph Nelson Davis, "The Negro Newspaper in Chicago, M.A. thesis, University of Chicago, 1939, 130).