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Dec. 16, 2004, 12:44 PM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. ñ Jim Squires, a distinguished journalist, author,
championship horse breeder and graduate of Peabody College, has donated
his papers to Vanderbilt University Library’s special collections
Squires, now of Versailles, Ky., grew up in Nashville and began his
journalism career as a reporter for The Tennessean in 1962. He worked
his way through Peabody, earning a bachelor’s degree in English in
1966. Squires was awarded a Nieman Fellowship in 1970 to study at
Squires said he was humbled by Vanderbilt’s strong interest in his
papers. "That a university with the stature of Vanderbilt would be
interested in the hard evidence of my existence is yet another amazing
event in a life of extraordinary good fortune," Squires said. "To have
the papers relating to my books and journalism adventures archived
alongside those whose contributions to history are far greater in a
library named after Alexander Heard is an honor I cannot presume to
deserve. It is appropriate only in that anything in my life that passes
for accomplishment is rooted in the hometown education I received in
and around the most esteemed institution of higher learning to which I
can claim even a remote connection."
In 1972 Squires became a national political correspondent for the
Chicago Tribune and later served as its Washington, D.C., bureau chief.
He became editor of the Orlando Sentinel in the late 1970s before
returning to the Tribune in 1981 as editor. During his tenure there,
the Tribune was awarded seven Pulitzer Prizes.
Squires made a dramatic career change in 1991 when he and his wife,
Mary Anne Squires, bought a farm near Lexington, Ky., to raise
thoroughbred horses. Monarchos, winner of the Kentucky Derby in 2001,
was born at their Two Bucks Farm.
Squires wrote Read All about It!: The Corporate Takeover of
America’s Newspapers (1993) and The Secrets of the Hopewell Box: Stolen
Elections, Southern Politics and a City’s Coming of Age (1996), a
colorful depiction of Nashville’s postwar machine politics and pivotal
role in the Civil Rights Movement from his own family’s perspective.
Squires’ most recent book, Horse of a Different Color: A Tale of
Breeding Geniuses, Dominant Females and the Fastest Derby Winner Since
Secretariat (2002), tells about his experiences as a novice
thoroughbred breeder in the deeply engrained Kentucky horse culture who
made it to the winner’s circle.
The James D. Squires Collection contains materials from his
newspaper career as well as working papers from his three books. It
also holds his correspondence from Ross Perot’s 1992 presidential
campaign. Squires served as the media adviser for Perot’s campaign
after meeting him while serving as a visiting professor at Harvard
Paul Gherman, Vanderbilt University librarian, expressed gratitude
to the Squires for their generosity. "These materials on publishing,
history, journalism and politics greatly support our existing
collections, adding depth to resources already in high demand by our
patrons," Gherman said. "They also strengthen our strong and growing
collection of materials from Tennessean writers."
Media contact: Ann Marie Deer Owens, (615) 322-NEWS
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