Honest Vanderbilt

"The public? Bah! The public be damned . . ." snorted bullet-headed Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt many years ago.

His great-great-grandson, Cornelius Vanderbilt IV, a gangling 26-year-old youth in 1924, set out to pander to the public by founding three tabloid newspapers, against the wishes of his family. He used on his masthead the phrase: "The public be served." Within two years, his tabloids (in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami) went bankrupt (TIME, May 10, 1926, et seq.]. Vanderbilt IV then functioned as special writer for the Hearst...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!