In Graphis Magazine 158, Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Harrison E. Salisbury documented the political cartoons that adorned the Op-Ed Page of The New York Times in the 1970s. Salisbury was the perfect person to write the article because he created the Times’ Op-Ed Page.
Although readers might take it for granted now, the Op-Ed Page at that time was a new and imaginative feature, created by Harrison E. Salisbury, in which both writers and artists could express themselves freely on the burning issues of the day. Salisbury provided page real estate to many illustrators for this “new realm of creative journalism.”
Salisbury wanted illustrators for the Op-Ed Page to create visual distinction from the rest of the newspaper, which largely featured photographs. He contacted scores of artists to contribute to the page, but found his greatest success using illustrators from Europe.
“They had no preconceptions nor past ties to the conventions of American journalism,” said Salisbury. “Indeed, many of them had no connection with any kind of journalism. And this, quite clearly, was for the best since it unshackled imaginations.”