Biographical Information:

Dates: 1893- 1982Dates in Ridgefield: 1934-1979
journalismeditor, reporter
When Lee B. Wood was a student at Amherst College, Talcott Williams, head of the Columbia School of Journalism, told him he'd never make a newspaperman. Williams may have been a good journalist, but he was a poor judge of talent; Lee Wood went on to become an editor of the New York Daily Telegram. His first job in 1916 was as a reporter for a newspaper in Cleveland where he made a point of attending the same Baptist church as John D. Rockefeller Sr. Each Sunday, he'd ask Mr. Rockefeller for a comment on current news and each time, he'd get an answer and a dime. Some of those answers turned into big stories and the dimes always helped the $12-a-week reporter to eat. Years later, sitting next to Nelson Rockefeller at a dinner, he described his experiences with the vice president's grandfather. "Did you save your dimes?" Mr. Rockefeller asked. He hadn't. "Well, I saved mine and if you like, I'll send you one." Rockefeller did and Wood saved it. Born in 1893 in Cory, Pennsylvania, Lee Wood spent 64 years in newspapering, working in Cleveland, Paris, and Oklahoma City before coming to New York in 1927 as an editor at The New York Telegram, a Scripps-Howard newspaper. He eventually became both editor and president of The New York World-Telegram and Sun, which won four Pulitzer Prizes while he was an executive. He retired in 1965 to become president of the Scripps-Howard Investment Company, which owned newspapers, and the Scripps-Howard Foundation, which awards journalism scholarships. Mr. Wood and his wife Mildred came to Ridgefield in 1934, buying a Ridgebury farm. When they were older, they bought a smaller house nearby. In 1979 the Woods moved to Ohio. Before he left town, Mr. Wood gave more than 1,000 books to the Mark Twain Library in Redding, founded by Twain himself, for its famous annual summer book sale. "Mark Twain was quite a newspaperman," he said at the time. "And it seems quite fitting to give a newspaperman's library to a library named after him."
--Source: Notable Ridgefielders–Jack Sanders