As a young man barely in his twenties, William Andrew Spalding arrived in Los Angeles in 1874 and obtained his first job on the Herald by writing an editorial on the dilapidated state of the Plaza. From that date to 1900 his life was intimately associated with the newspapers of his city—the Express and the Times, as well as the Herald—and he worked in almost every capacity for them: reporter, business manager, and editor.
Spalding worked for the Times during its formative years when Harrison Gray Otis, the champion of conservatism, fought organized labor, and Spalding helped the Times through its initial great fight, the "big strike" of 1890. His strong sense of justice and social responsibility led him repeatedly into political reforms and moved him to organize, with others, the Orange Growers' Union, which later became the California Fruit Growers Exchange—better known as Sunkist Growers. Spalding's colorful autobiography, first published in 1961, provides a valuable account of Los Angeles journalism—and Los Angeles history—during a formative period.
William Andrew Spalding (1852-1941) was one of Los Angeles's most prominent journalists during the late nineteenth century.