In the latter years of the 19th century, Joseph Pulitzer stood out as the very embodiment of American journalism. Hungarian-born, an intense indomitable figure, Pulitzer was the most skillful of newspaper publishers, a passionate crusader against dishonest government, a fierce, hawk-like competitor who did not shrink from sensationalism in circulation struggles, and a visionary who richly endowed his profession.
His innovative New York World and St. Louis Post-Dispatch reshaped newspaper journalism. Pulitzer was the first to call for the training of journalists at the university level in a school of journalism. And certainly, the lasting influence of the Pulitzer Prizes on journalism, literature, music, and drama is to be attributed to his visionary acumen.
More than 2,400 entries are submitted each year in the Pulitzer Prize competitions, and only 21 awards are normally made. The awards are the culmination of a year-long process that begins early in the year with the appointment of 102 distinguished judges who serve on 20 separate juries and are asked to make three nominations in each of the 21 categories.
The following are instructions for members of the public, not affiliated with Columbia University, who wish to view and/or obtain copies of winning entries from the Pulitzer Prizes in Journalism collection at Columbia University Libraries.
The Pulitzer Prizes in Journalism Archives are composed of the winning entries in the Journalism categories of the Prizes. For the years 1917 - 1995, winning entries are on microfilm. For the years 1987 to the present, winning entries are available in print form, and from 1995 on, winning journalism entries (including photographs and editorial cartoons) are posted on the Pulitzer Prizes website.
If you wish to make arrangements to access the Pulitzer Prizes in Journalism archives, you must consult Columbia's Library Information Office web page, or call (212) 854-7309, for details on obtaining a pass that is required for access to the library.
The archives of winning Pulitzer Prize entries are located in two different libraries:
You can submit a microfilm loan request for the year that interests you through your local public library (or college or university library, if you are a currently affiliated student or faculty member). Columbia's Interlibrary Loan website may be found here. Requests for microfilm must be placed by a library; Interlibrary Loan does not accept requests from individuals.
All Interlibrary Loan requests made through your local library must include the following information, which can be obtained from the Pulitzer Prizes website.