City Room

Front Cover
When Arthur Gelb joinedThe New York Timesin 1944, manual typewriters, green eyeshades, spittoons, floors littered with cigarette butts, and two bookies were what he found in the city room. Gelb was twenty, his position the lowliest-night copy boy.

When he retired forty-five years later, he was managing editor. On his way to the top, he exposed crooked cops and politicians; mentored a generation of our most talented journalists; was the first to praise such yet undiscovered talents as Woody Allen and Barbra Streisand; and brought Joe Papp public recognition. As metropolitan editor, Gelb reshaped the way the paper covered New York, and while assistant managing editor, he launched the paper's daily special sections.

From D-Day to the liberation of the concentration camps; from the agony of Vietnam to the resignation of a President; from the fall of Joe McCarthy to the rise of the Woodstock Nation, Gelb's time at the Times reveals his intimate take on the great events of the past fifty years.

The raffish early days are long gone, the hum of computers has replaced the clatter of typewriter keys, but the same ambition, passion, grandstanding, and courage Gelb found at twenty still fill the city room.

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User Review  - NewsieQ - LibraryThing

The author began working at the The New York Times in 1944 at age 20. He retired 45 years later as a top editor. Published in 2003, City Room tells the story of those 45 years, emphasizing the ... Read full review


User Review  - Kirkus

A loving, extremely guarded memoir of the author's 45 years with the New York Times, from durance vile to managing editor.A son of the Bronx, Gelb appeared in the Times' "raffish, freewheeling" city ... Read full review

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About the author (2003)

Arthur Gelb became the president of The New York Times Company Foundation after retiring and is now the director of The New York Times College Scholarship Program. He is the author, with Barbara Gelb, of O'Neill: Life with Monte Cristo.

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