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Kellogg, Paul Underwood

in: People

Paul U. Kellogg (1879-1958) —  Journalist, Editor, and Social Reformer


At security hearing. Paul Kellogg, New York City, appears before the Senate Finance Committee considering the Economic Security Act. 2/14/35.
At security hearing. Paul Kellogg, New York City, appears before the Senate Finance Committee considering the Economic Security Act. 2/14/35.
Photo: Library of Congress
Digital ID hec 38355

Introduction: Paul Underwood Kellogg, was born September 30, 1879, in Kalamazoo, Michigan, the son of Frank Israel and Mary Foster Underwood Kellogg. He was educated in Kalamazoo schools and took special courses at Columbia University, 1901-06, and with the philanthropic education committee of the New York Charity Organization Society (COS) in 1902 (whose summer school in philanthropy later led to the establishment of the New York School of Social Work). In 1911, Amherst College, Massachusetts, awarded him an honorary Master of Arts degree; in 1937, Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut, conferred on him an honorary Doctor of Letters degree.

Kellogg married Marion Pearce Sherwood, a Kalamazoo native, in October 1909. Their children were Richard Patrick, born in 1911, and Mercy Pearce, born in 1918. In 1934, Kellogg and his wife were divorced, and in the following year he married Helen Hall, social worker and head resident of Henry Street Settlement, New York City.

Career: Following graduation from high school (class of 1897, which elected him class historian), Kellogg became a reporter for, and city editor of, the Kalamazoo Daily Telegraph. In 1902, he joined the staff of Charities, the in-house publication of the New York Charity Organization Society, as assistant editor. Charities merged with the Commons, journal of the Chicago Commons settlement house, to become Charities and the Commons in 1905, and it became the Survey in 1909, taking its name from the Pittsburgh Survey, which Kellogg directed. While the magazine continued to be published formally by the Charity Organization Society, responsibility for its direction was to a Charities Publication Committee in 1905, the year Kellogg became managing editor. In 1912, for financial reasons and for purposes of editorial independence, the Survey broke its ties with the COS, and Survey Associates, a cooperative publishing society, was formed to publish the magazine. At that time, Kellogg became editor, a position he held until publication ceased in 1952.

Under his editorship, the Survey, one the foremost journals of social issues in the first half of the twentieth century, dealt with such themes as the “Negro in the Cities of the North,” 1906; “Harlem, Mecca of the New Negro,” 1925; and with unemployment throughout the twenties, culminating in a special graphic number, “Unemployment and Ways Out,” in April of 1929. Through special numbers and series, and with an unprecedented emphasis on graphic techniques, the Survey studied and interpreted racial and nationality groups, city and regional planning, segregation, health, education, American-Russian relations, etc. Regular coverage provided information for both practicing social workers and others directly involved in social service, and for those whom Kellogg called intelligent and concerned laymen interested in the social and economic issues behind the headlines.

Kellogg’s career as editor paralleled a variety of related interests and activities. From 1907 to 1909 he directed the Pittsburgh Survey, the first community survey in the U.S., and edited the six-volume findings of that survey (The Pittsburgh Survey, Russell Sage Foundation, 1909-1914). He was chairman of the committee on occupational standards of the in 1910, and secretary of the Committee to Secure a Federal Commission on Industrial Relations, 1911-13.

A member of the board of directors of the American Union Against Militarism, 1915-17, Kellogg was also one of the founders and a board member of the Foreign Policy Association. During World War I, he headed the editorial and historical bureau of the American Red Cross in Paris, and wrote, with Arthur Gleason, British Labor and the War (Boni and Liveright, 1919). He was a member of committees of the American Association of Social Workers and the National Federation of Settlements, and was the president of the in 1939. In 1934 President Franklin D. Roosevelt named him a member of the advisory council to the Committee on Economic Security, and he chaired the advisory council to the New York State Employment Service, 1934-39.

In 1935 the New York Evening Post Alumni Association awarded him a medal for “distinguished and courageous journalism.” He also received the Pugsley Award for the outstanding paper read at the 1936 National Conference of Social Work.

This work may also be read through the Internet Archive.

For further reading:

“Negro in the Cities of the North”

The Pittsburgh Survey, Russell Sage Foundation, 1909-1914

SourcePaul U. Kellogg Papers. University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, Social Welfare History Archives. Minneapolis, MN

How to Cite this Article (APA Format): Social Welfare History Project. (2011). Paul U. Kellogg (1879-1958) — Journalist, editor, and social reformer. Social Welfare History Project. Retrieved [date accessed] from


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