The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume XIV. The Victorian Age, Part Two.

IV. The Growth of Journalism

§ 4. The War Correspondent

Two features of newspaper work which had their rise in the nineteenth century are the leading article and special correspondence discussing foreign affairs, or describing war. The war correspondent, indeed, may be said to have been born, run his full course and expired in the second half of the century. Reputations such as were made by W. H. Russell, of The Times, in writing of the Crimean war, or by Archibald Forbes, of The Daily News, in the Franco-Prussian war, and Henry Labouchere, describing Paris in a state of siege, are no longer possible. Lord Raglan complained that The Times published information which, even with the then limited means of transmission, found its way back to Russia, and interfered with his plans; both French and Germans thought the messages of Forbes and his colleagues similarly detrimental; and, in the war between this country and the Boers, which closed the century, a very severe censorship was set up, which practically extinguished the independence of the war correspondent. In the wars of the earlier part of the twentieth century, military authorities have kept war correspondents very many miles away from the front, and government censorships have come into play, with most striking effect. Foreign correspondents—of whom Henry Crabb Robinson, sent out by The Times in 1807, was one of the earliest—have maintained their position. So, too, has the leading article, despite the judgment of Richard Cobden, when he was one of the proprietors of The Morning Star, that “people did not like leading articles,” and also despite the practice, followed by a large part of the halfpenny press, of avoiding reasoned expositions of political principles.