ANS in pencil signed “WRH,” written at the bottom of a TLS from King Features Syndicate president Joseph V. Connolly, one page, 8.5 x 11, June 15, 1937. Connolly’s letter, in part: “As evidence of the remarkable pulling power of the Mark Hellinger feature, we have received 68,314 manuscripts, each containing 1,000 words, from contestants for his short story prize.” Hearst’s handwritten note, in full: “It is a grand feature. I enjoy it immensely, but I had no idea that it had such appeal.” In very good to fine condition, with light staining to the lower left corner, and old adhesive residue on the reverse. On July 26, 1938, a year after he sent this letter, Joseph V. Connolly was appointed as general manager of the Hearst newspapers, where he took charge of an expansion program. Mark Hellinger (1903-1947) was an American journalist, theatre columnist, and film producer, who, in November 1929, moved to the New York Daily Mirror. While continuing to write daily and Sunday columns, he contributed sketches to the Ziegfeld Follies, wrote plays, published magazine articles, produced two collections of short stories, and co-wrote the screenplay for Broadway Bill with Robert Riskin. By 1937, Hellinger was a hugely popular syndicated columnist featured in 174 newspapers.
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