JOSEPH PULITZER 163
EARLY LIFE IN ST. LOUIS AND HIS FOUNDING AND
CONDUCT OF THE POST-DISPATCH
UP TO 1883
BY GEORGE S. JOHNS
COCKERILL JOINS POST-DISPATCH STAFF
When he became sole owner of the Post-Dispatch, he
looked about for the best editorial assistants he could find.
He selected Col. John A. Cockerill, who was a couple of years
older than Mr. Pulitzer and had become prominent in his
profession. He had had wider newspaper experience than
Mr. Pulitzer. He was the son of Col. Joseph R. Cockerill
of the Seventeenth Ohio Regiment, which was the first to
meet the Confederates' challenge. He was called Colonei
by courtesy, as many newspaper men were, particularly
those who had served in the army in any capacity. He himself repudiated it in his own account of his war service. He
When it comes to military titles, I'm out of it. My father was a
Colonel, and so I presume my friends think the title is hereditary. My
war record has been told. I enlisted in the army as a drummer boy in 1861,
and served until 1863, when we were mustered out by general order of the
War Department. I again enlisted as a bugler in the artillery and served
for a short time. I was in Southern Ohio at the time of Morgan's raid,
when we did all running and no fighting. I saw all that I cared to of war
and prefer reading about it to being in it. From '73 to 75 I was aid-decamp to Gov. William Allen of Ohio.
Before his war service young Cockerill was a printers'
"devil" in his home town, and when he returned from the
war he went into the printing office of the Scion of Temperance,
printed at Columbus, and was a clerk in the State Senate.
After an association with Gen. Vallandingham in the Dayton
Empire, later known as the Ledger, which was not a success,
he went to the Cincinnati Enquirer and worked under the