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Samuel Hopkins Adams
Date: 1871 - 1958
Remarks: Samuel Hopkins Adams (1871-1958), the American muckraker and author best known for his investigative journalism. In a series of eleven articles he wrote for Collier's Weekly in 1905, "The Great American Fraud", Adams exposed many of the false claims made about patent medicines, pointing out that in some cases these medicines were damaging the health of the people using them. The series had a huge impact and lead to the passage of the 1906 Pure Food and Drug Act. In 1911 the Supreme Court ruled that the prohibition of falsifications referred only to the ingredients of the medicine. Adams returned to the attack and another series of articles in Collier's Weekly, Adams exposed the misleading advertising that companies were using to sell their products. Adams was a prolific writer, who wrote fiction as well. "Night Bus", one of Adams's many magazine stories, became the basis for the film It Happened One Night. His best-known novel, Revelry (1926), based on the scandals of the Harding administration, was later followed by Incredible Era (1939), a biography of Harding.