Though McClure’s was founded in 1893 to compete with other quality American magazines like Harper’s and Scribner’s, the magazine achieved distinction and national fame at the turn of the century by launching the “muckraking” era in American journalism. Bringing together a team of pioneering journalists that included Ida Tarbell, Ray Stannard Baker, and Lincoln Steffans, the magazine published a series of deeply researched exposés of abuse and corruption in American government and big business, such as Tarbell’s landmark history of Rockefeller’s Standard Oil Company and Baker’s series on Andrew Carnegie’s U.S. Steel. Over a five year period, the magazine’s investigative reporting launched major campaigns for reform and triggered a spate of new legislation, while the paper’s circulation reached over a half million readers. When this core group of investigative journalists left the magazine in 1906 to start their own (The American Magazine), S. S. McClure responded by hiring Willa Cather as editor and moving the magazine in a more literary direction. Readers will find numerous contributions by Cather in the eleven years covered by the MJP’s edition, as well as works by Arnold Bennett, Arthur Conan Doyle, O. Henry, A. E. Housman, Ford Madox Heuffer, Sarah Orne Jewett, Rudyard Kipling, Jack London, Upton Sinclair, R. L. Stevenson, Booth Tarkington, Mrs. Humphry Ward, and W. B. Yeats. Like other quality journals of the day, McClure’s is richly illustrated, publishing art work by N. C. Wyeth and Arthur G. Dove, and a typical issue easily averages a hundred pages of advertising.
The Modernist Journals Project would like to thank Princeton University Library for providing the hard copies of McClure’s that are digitally reproduced in our edition of the magazine. Though our editon will eventually span eleven years, from 1900 through 1910, we are still searching for cover-to-cover hard copies of the following 15 issues: 1900: Jan (14.3), Mar (14.5), Jul (15.3); 1901: Mar (16.5); 1902: Feb (18.4); 1905: Aug (25.4), Oct (25.6); 1906: Apr (26.6), May (27.1), Nov (28.1); 1907: Aug (29.4), Sep (29.5), Oct (29.6); 1909: Apr (32.6); 1910: Mar (34.5).