The Daily Telegrams of Will Rogers
Perhaps none of his writings made Will Rogers more famous than his Daily Telegrams. Syndicated in more than 500 newspapers, including at least one in every major city, these short daily columns of down-to-earth, humorous takes on current events, everyday issues, and life’s questions reached millions of readers throughout the country. First published in the New York Times in late July 1926 and continuing until Rogers’ death in August 1935, they would through the years shape public opinions, impact government policies, and influence peoples’ perceptions. Readers were known to read first Will’s Daily Telegram each morning, then the rest of the newspaper.
Rogers’ Daily Telegrams continue to be popular. Filled with many of the best of his wit and wisdom, they are sought out constantly and widely by individuals worldwide. Using the online books, enthusiasts, researchers, students, scholars, and other users can now search effortlessly for a favorite saying, a quote about a famous personality, an observation about Prohibition, a thought about the New Deal, a gibe at college athletics, virtually any possible topic that might have arisen in the minds of Americans and on the pages of their newspapers in the first third of the twentieth century. And, as with most of Rogers’ remarks, the quotes, observations, thoughts, and gibes will resonate with timeliness and universality.
As with the printed books, the individual online volumes of Daily Telegrams are divided somewhat equally and, perhaps appropriate to Rogers’ frequent focus on politics, coincide with presidential administrations (see titles below). These electronic books replicate almost exactly the volumes as published by Oklahoma State University Press (1978–1979). Included is much of the fore matter and all of the annotations. No photos or indices have been included; thus, the online pagination differs from the OSU books. (See “Introduction” in Volume 1 (pages i-iv) for a history of the Daily Telegrams.)
Open an individual volume or use the option of the full four-volume set. Then click on the link SEARCH DAILY TELEGRAMS. It will take you to a user-friendly search engine that will quickly conduct whatever search you make, such as a keyword, and then will list all results. Clicking on a result will take you to an exact reference.
When searching "The Writings of Will Rogers," remember that Rogers took liberties with spelling and grammar. Here are some tips that might make your search more successful:
- Do not use quote marks.
- Use a single keyword with each search.
- Avoid searches that involve contractions. Rogers did not always use apostrophes; sometimes he spelled out a contraction (e.g., "dident" for "didn’t"). For example, if searching for the quote "I never met a man I didn’t like," insert in the search window only a part of the quote and avoid the contraction (e.g., I never met a man).
- Try different possible spellings of a proper name or a concept.
The Daily Telegrams are in the Adobe PDF format. You can download a free copy of Adobe's Reader by clicking on the Get Adobe Reader logo.
Note: If you wish to save the file to your computer, you can right click on any of the above links and choose "Save Target As..." to save file.