1877 – 1942
Who was Moses Annenberg?
Moses "Moe" Louis Annenberg was a Jewish American newspaper publisher, who purchased The Philadelphia Inquirer, the third-oldest surviving daily newspaper in the United States. in 1936. The Inquirer has the sixteenth largest average weekday U.S. newspaper circulation, and has won eighteen Pulitzer Prizes.
Born in East Prussia in 1877 to a Jewish family he left Germany and immigrated to Chicago in 1900. Annenberg began his career as a Chicago newspaper salesman at the Chicago Tribune, then, for the Hearst Corporation. He eventually built a fortune and the successful publishing company that became Triangle Publications, Inc. During the Roosevelt administration, he was indicted for tax evasion and, after pleading guilty, was sentenced to two years; he died in prison.
Several sources have documented his links to organized crime, such as his involvement in Chicago's "Circulation Wars" and his later ownership of the National Racing Wire, though it is widely under reported.
Annenberg was indicted on August 11, 1939 for income tax evasion for the years 1932, 1933, 1934, 1935 and 1936 totaling $3,258,809.97 in income taxes evaded. On April 4, 1940 Annenberg plead guilty to the 1936 income tax evasion count in the indictment which charged him with evading $1,217,296 in taxes. Judge James Herbert Wilkerson, the same judge who previously sentenced Alphonse Capone, sentenced Annenberg to three years in prison and a fine of $8,000,000 "the largest single tax fraud penalty in history" at the time.
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