Sunday, August 30, 2015

Edward Francis Murphy-Reporter (52 Ancestors #36)

This week's challenge was to write about "Working for a Living".  I wrote about my maternal grandfather who worked for the same newspaper for 48 years!  From copy-boy to Political Editor of the paper.

My maternal grandfather was Edward “Eddie” Francis Murphy.  He was born on the 20th of August in 1906 in Peoria, Illinois.  Eddie spent his entire working career as a journalist for the Peoria Illinois newspaper.   

Eddie began working for the Transcript in 1923, while in high school, as a copy boy.  He did not finish high school, but remained working for the Transcript.  By 1925 he was listed as a reporter for the Peoria Journal-Transcript.  In 1929, he was the assistant sports editor for the Journal.  In the 1940 Peoria Census he was listed as a Political Reporter.

As his best friend, Kenny Jones, wrote about him upon Eddie’s retirement, Eddie interviewed Babe Ruth, Eisenhower, Nixon, Truman, Stevenson and many others.  A picture of Eddie with George Wallace at the airport appeared on the front page of the newspaper one time when Wallace came to Peoria.  My grandfather was furious to have that picture taken and shown as he was not a fan of George Wallace!

Eddie Murphy retired from the Peoria Journal Star (which had been the Journal-Transcript) after forty-eight years!  We wish that he had written about all of his experiences, but apparently many of them he kept to himself out of fear of retribution to his family.  He was well-known in the area and had been reporting for many years and was knowledgeable about many situations, involving sports figures, political figures, crime figures, gangsters, etc.!

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