ABSTRACT

Charles Chapin was once again his old autocratic self since the warden put him in charge of the Sing Sing Bulletin, the penitentiary's newspaper. His step quickened, his shoulders straightened, and as another observed, the gray-haired sixty-one-year-old editor was "czar once more, and he gloried in his power." In 1889, Joseph Pulitzer lured Chapin away from Chicago, where he had become one of the highest-paid reporters, to New York to be his city editor first at the Morning World, later the Evening World. In January 1920, Lawes, who would later become one of the nation's best-known wardens, accepted the appointment and returned to the prison hospital to see Chapin. Chapin went to work to breathe new life into the prison newspaper. Thus by the time Chapin was appointed editor of the Sing Sing Bulletin in 1920, prison journalism had become an established part of life behind the walls of Sing Sing and at least two-thirds of America's prisons.