AJ History

First 100 Years


The first volume of The National Amateur

Excerpts from accounts 1879 convention

In 1891 at Philadelphia

NAPA's first permanent constitution

Pillow fight

Almost fatal doldrums

1926 marked the semi-centennial

Little remembered giant

The Torpedo

The Mailing Bureau

Library of Amateur Journalism

Ralph Babcock

Presidents' Field

Tryout Smith

Thrift & Edkins


Amateur Press Clubs

Philadelphia Connections

National Amateur Press Association
The First 100 Years: Flashbacks...

At Chicago in 1934 the impulsive, energetic and aggressive Ralph W. Babcock, Jr., of Great Neck, N. Y., editor of the Scarlet Cockerel, was elected to the presidency. It was printed by the editor and some of its later issues were among the finest examples of printing ever produced by an amateur journalist. His administration, a tempestuous one, was filled with minor excitement. Elected to the highest office in the association without experience in the minor offices, he broke all precedents. Impatient of results, he paid very little attention to personal feelings or constitutional law. Disagreements with his fellow officers, demands for resignations, heated arguments were common. He assumed the office of mailing manager, he removed the secretary and combined the office with that of treasurer.

He himself at one time resigned, then withdrew his resignation. The official editor was continually in hot water with the president and offered his resignation, but it was not accepted. At one time President Babcock announced he was a candidate for re-election, and at another that he would never accept another office in the association. Finally, he became a candidate for official editor.

    Last updated: 01/16/2000