Pioneering Journalist Lillian Ross Passes Away at 99

Lillian Ross joined The New Yorker as a literary journalist in 1945 and then proceeded to work for the magazine for over seventy years. She did a profile of Ernest Hemingway in 1950. She sent photographs of her adopted baby in 1965 to Catcher in the Rye author J.D. Salinger. (Salinger’s awesome response: “He’s roaring with laughter. Oh, if he can only hold on to it.”)

She jotted down conversations and quotes in a notebook instead of using a recorder, which she did not believe in. She even did a story on Lin-Manuel Miranda ten years ago, well before his Hamilton fame.

Last, you can sense the appreciation of the younger writing staff regarding the attentiveness Ross showed them.

She took young people seriously, an art not always cultivated among grownups…In so doing, she provided an example of how to be taken seriously by younger people—an objective that, for women especially, becomes more challenging as the years mount. Lillian was a generous champion of younger writers at the magazine

Source: Rebecca Mead at The New Yorker