William Newcomb and the Media Foundation for Land Economics, 1976-1984

Collection Overview

Title: William Newcomb and the Media Foundation for Land Economics, 1976-1984

Predominant Dates: 1980-1982

Arrangement: Arranged in three series by material type: 1) Correspondence; 2) Articles and Speeches; and, 3) Advertisements and Announcements

Biographical Note

William W. Newcomb was born in 1902 in Huntington, Indiana. He attended the University of Rochester in Syracuse, NY during which time his uncle introduced him to the works of Henry George. Between 1936 and 1943 Newcomb served as managing editor of Land and Freedom and Economics editor of Progress Guide from 1943 to 1947.

Newcomb moved to Melbourne, Florida with his wife, Helen Bakenhus, in the early 1950s. Previously, Bakenhus served as secretary to Harold S. Buttenheim, the long-time editor and co-owner of The American City. Newcomb worked as a realtor until 1976 when he retired to devote the rest of his life to Georgist causes.

In 1977, with four others, Newcomb established the Media Foundation for Land Economics to promote land value taxation through newspaper and magazine syndication. The Foundation solicited syndicated columnists from publications all over the country to write economic analyses that incorporated the principles of land economics. The Foundation also distributed research grants to journalists for the same purpose.

The Media Foundation for Land Economics was supported by contributions. Its Executive committee included: Rev. Joseph Tisch, a local priest who also ran the Human Services department for the City of Melbourne; Mary Knoke, a civic leader; Maynard M. Mitchell, a local businessman who operated several small electronic companies; and, William Neale who served as the Foundation attorney. In the early 1980s, Newcomb established the Newcomb Incentives Award program to recognize individuals and groups whose efforts to spread the Georgist message deserved recognition.

Newcomb died in 1984 at the age of 82. The Foundation dissolved soon thereafter.

Collection Content

Series One: Correspondence

William Newcomb to Everett Seeley (August 5, 1980)
William Newcomb to Bob [Clancy] (October 27, 1980)
Bob Clancy to Bill [Newcomb] (November 11, 1980)
William Newcomb to Fellow Georgist (December 27, 1980)
William Newcomb to Friends (January 26, 1981)
Bob Clancy to Bill [Newcomb] (February 3, 1981)
William Newcomb to Georgist Contributor (April 27, 1981)
William Newcomb, “We Will Have to Close Our Doors” (June 2, 1981)
Bill Newcomb to Bob Clancy and Steven Cord (July 31, 1981)
William Newcomb to Georgist Attorney (November 1, 1981)
William W. Newcomb to Ed Dodson, February 2, 1982
William Newcomb to “My 24 Co-Sponsors” (June 9, 1982)
William Newcomb to Bob [Clancy] (August 3, 1982)
William Newcomb to Erwin Knoll (November 1, 1982)
Erwin Knoll to William Newcomb (November 5, 1982)
William Newcomb to Philip Finkelstein (November 9, 1982)
Bob Clancy to Bill [Newcomb] (December 13, 1983)
William Newcomb to “Executive Directors and Journalists” (January 4, 1984)

Series Two: Articles and Speeches

William W. Newcomb, “If I had $21,703,00.00.” Address at the CGO in Evanston, Illinois (July 15-18, 1976)

James L. Green, “Property Tax Handling” Fort Lauderdale News (October 15, 1977)

William Newcomb, “A New Foundation and a Magazine.” Address at the CGO in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania (June 30-July 4 1978)

Michael Moore, “Everyone Should Pay His Share—Economist,” Today (September 5, 1979)

William Newcomb, “Make Oil from Coal Cheaper than from Wells,” Today (early 1980)

Paul Wilborn, “Selling Land-Value Taxation,” The Tampa Tribune (March 16, 1980)

Martin Merzer, “How Inflation Spoils American Dreams,” The Miami Herald (March 30, 1980)

Jackie Reid, “Tax land, not buildings?” The Times (July 2, 1980)

William Newcomb, “Letter,” Washington Journal Review (September 1980)

Fred McGunagle, “Fix up, pay more,” Chronicle-Telegram (July 20, 1981)

“Public Notice” (March 16, 1981)

William Newcomb, “LVT via Litigation” (1981)

William Newcomb, “Using Communications Media” (undated)

William Newcomb, “Campaigns waged through mail” and “Give government back to the people” (undated)

William Newcomb, “Viewpoint: Tax land, not higher sales taxes” (undated)

P.I. Prentice, “The Two Trillion-Dollar of Today’s Wrong Kind of Property Tax” (undated)

William Newcomb, The Conspiracy Against Homeowners and Tenants (undated)

David Hapgood, “Who is William W. Newcomb?” (undated)

Series Three: Advertisements and Announcements

Joseph Tisch, “Authors: Why Not Write a Feature Profile?” [1980]

The Incentives Awards Project (1982)

The Newcomb Incentive Awards (undated)