Johnson Publishing Company
Johnson Publishing Company

Johnson Publishing Company

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Johnson Publishing Company, Inc. was an American publishing company founded in November 1942 by African-American businessman John H. Johnson. It was headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. JPC was privately held and run by Johnson until his death in 2005. His publications "forever changed the popular representation of African Americans." The writing portrayed African Americans as they saw themselves and its photojournalism made history. Led by its flagship publication, Ebony, Johnson Publishing was at one time the largest African-American-owned publishing firm in the United States. JPC also published Jet, a weekly news magazine, from November 1951 until June 2014, when it became digital only. In the 1980s, the company branched into film and television.

The company's last chairman and chief executive officer was the founder's daughter, Linda Johnson Rice. In its final years, Johnson Publishing Company sold off assets including its historic 820 S. Michigan Avenue headquarters in 2011, and its publications in 2016. In April 2019, JPC filed for liquidation, ending the company's 76-year run. The historic Ebony/Jet photo archives, which JPC retained after the sale of its Ebony and Jet magazines, were sold in July 2019 for $30 million to a group of art and educational foundations to make them available to the public.


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