SI is Born

On August 16, 1954, the ever popular Sports Illustrated magazine put its first issue on shelves.

The cover featured Eddie Mathews of the Milwaukee Braves. The photo was taken by Mark Kauffman. Ever since then the magazine has been used as an informer for sports fans everywhere. Topics range from the college sports previews to Olympic coverage and of course, the annual swimsuit edition.

The magazine had two predecessors both called Sports Illustrated. They both failed in the 30s and 40s. Henry Luce who was the founder to Time Magazine wanted to give it one more try despite his peers telling him not to invest in something destined to fail. He bought the rights to the name ‘Sports Illustrated’ and found writers and photographers.

For the first 12 years, the magazine failed to profit. The liberal use of photographs along with the expansive sports coverage is what saved the franchise from going under.

In the beginning it looked like the magazine might fail like the others before it. Luce passed away in 1967, just long enough to watch his creation start to take its place in society.

Now there are copies of the first issue can be found on eBay like any other memorabilia, for a price. The rest is history. SI has become a popular magazine for sports fans everywhere despite competition.


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