Macfadden Communications Group

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Macfadden Communications Group
Founded1898; 126 years ago (1898)
FounderBernarr Macfadden
Country of originUnited States
Headquarters locationNew York City, New York, U.S.
Publication typesMagazines

Macfadden Communications Group is a publisher of business magazines. It has a historical link with a company started in 1898 by Bernarr Macfadden that was one of the largest magazine publishers of the twentieth century.


Macfadden Publications[edit]

Physical Culture, Bernarr Macfadden's first magazine though the company Macfadden Publications, was based on Macfadden's interest in bodybuilding. The launch of True Story in 1919 made the company very successful. Other well-known magazines, such as Photoplay and True Detective, soon followed. Macfadden also launched the tabloid New York Evening Graphic. Bernarr Macfadden withdrew from his leadership roles with the company in 1941.


In 1961, the Bartell Broadcasting Corporation bought a controlling share in Macfadden and merged with the company, forming Macfadden-Bartell.[1] Bartell owned WADO New York, WOKY Milwaukee, and KCBQ San Diego. A share in Bartell was acquired by Downe Communications in 1967, with full control in 1969.[2] Between 1969 and 1974 Downe was acquired by Charter Company. Bartell was fully acquired by Downe in 1976, and Downe was fully acquired by Charter in 1978.

Downe purchased the newspaper supplement Family Weekly in 1966, and the Ladies' Home Journal and The American Home from the Curtis Publishing Company in 1968.

Macfadden Group[edit]

Macfadden's women's magazines were spun off in 1975, and sold to the unit president, Peter J. Callahan. These magazines were:

  • True Story
  • Photoplay
  • TV-Radio Mirror
  • True Confessions
  • Motion Picture
  • True Romance
  • True Experience
  • True Love

Us was purchased in 1980, and sold in 1986. In the mid-eighties, Macfadden bought the Ideal Publishing Company, which published Teen Beat and other fan magazines, from Filmways. MacFadden acquired a stake in what would become American Media in 1989 when it bought a stake in the National Enquirer.


In 1991, the Macfadden consumer magazines were spun off and merged with Sterling's Magazines. Sterling's published fan magazines such as Tiger Beat, as well as the music magazine Metal Edge. The merger was finalized in October 1992.[3] In 1998, the conglomerate's line of youth music publications was sold off to Primedia; the rest were bought by Dorchester Media in 2004.[4]

Teen Magazines[edit]

Macfadden Holdings[edit]

The trade magazines Chief Executive and Discount Merchandiser, as well as the company's stake in American Media, remained a separate company. American Media was sold in 1999 to the investment group Evercore Partners. The Macfadden trade titles were sold to VNU the same year.

Present day[edit]

The executives of Macfadden Business Communications started a new company using the Macfadden name. It is a publisher of business-to-business magazines.

Historical publications[edit]

Magazines [5][6][7][edit]

  • Physical Culture
  • True Story (1919–2004)
  • Brain Power (1922–24) (also titled National Pictorial Brain Power Magazine)
  • True Experiences (1922-
  • True Romances (1923-
  • Love and Romance (1923-
  • Muscle Builder (1924-
  • True Detective (1924–1971)
  • Master Detective (1930-
  • Famous Detective Cases
  • True Love
  • True Love Stories (1924-
  • True Marriage Stories (1924-
  • Modern Marriage
  • Own Your Own Home
  • Your Faith
  • Your Home
  • Dream World (also titled Dream World: Love and Romance)
  • Ghost Stories (1926–32) (under Harold Hersey's control 1930–32)
  • Macfadden's Fiction Lovers' Magazine
  • Midnight (also titled Midnight Mysteries)
  • The Dance Magazine
  • Climax: Exciting Stories for Men
  • Photoplay (1934–1980)
  • Secrets (1936-
  • Personal Romances (1937-
  • Movie Mirror
  • Radio Mirror ( -1948)
  • Saga: Adventure Stories for Men (195x-198x)
  • TV Radio Mirror (1949–1977)
  • True Confessions (1963–1992)
  • Motion Picture (1911–1977)
  • Sport (1946–1975)
  • Intimate Stories (1948-
  • Revealing Romances (1949-
  • Pageant (1961–1977)
  • Liberty (1931–1950)
  • Home Furnishings News (2006-2014)[8] also known as HFN[9][10]
  • Dance Magazine (2001-2016)[11]
  • Dance Spirit (2006-2016)[12][11]
  • Dance Teacher (2006-2016)[12][11]
  • Pointe (2006-2016)[12][11]
  • Dance Retailer News (2006-2016)[12][11]
  • Grocery Headquarters (2004-2017) [13][14]


Teck Publishing Corporation (1931–1938)[edit]

Bartholomew House imprint[edit]

Macfadden also published a few hardcover books through the years, under the imprint Bartholomew House. Initially a way to group together stories from Macfadden's magazines into a book (as in Great Western Heroes, Great Pioneer Heroes),[15] the imprint expanded into first editions of new material after the purchase by the Bartell Group (Coffee, Tea or Me?, "Say ... Didn’t You Used to Be George Murphy?").

Current publications[edit]

  • Pet Business (purchased in 2000)[25]


  1. ^ "Macfadden Wins Merger Approval". The New York Times. 1962-02-10. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-12-05.
  2. ^ "Chase Seeks U.S. Leasing Unit:; Share Exchange Is Set COMPANIES TAKE MERGER ACTIONS". The New York Times. 1969-10-30. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-12-05.
  3. ^ "Macfadden magazines merge with Sterling's - Sterling's/Macfadden Partnership", Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management (Oct. 1992).
  4. ^ "Primedia buys teen mag publishers". Retrieved 2017-12-05.
  5. ^ "Macfadden". Archived from the original on 9 October 2010. Retrieved 1 August 2010.
  6. ^ "Press: Macfadden's Family". Time Magazine. Sep 21, 1936. Archived from the original on December 15, 2008.
  7. ^ Hunt, William R. (1989). Body love: the amazing career of Bernarr Macfadden. Popular Press.
  8. ^ "Macfadden Communications Group Acquires Home Furnishings News". Business Wire. 14 November 2006.
  9. ^ "About HFN" company webpage. Retrieved 2013-02-18.
  10. ^ "Why PBM's Small Addition Will Have a Large Impact On Its Business - M and A and Finance @". Retrieved 2014-11-11.
  11. ^ a b c d e "Dance Magazine Announces New Ownership". dancemagazine. 2016-09-19. Retrieved 2017-12-05.
  12. ^ a b c d Lifestyle Media Inc. merged with Macfadden Dance Magazine, LLC Archived December 3, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ "Supermarket Publishing Veteran Acquires Grocery Headquarters.(McFadden Communications Group LLC)". Min's B to B. 30 August 2004.
  14. ^ "Winsight LLC acquires the B2B magazine Grocery Headquarters from Macfadden Comm". Talking New Media. 2017-06-01. Retrieved 2017-12-05.
  15. ^ a b (compiled by) Adams, Ramon Frederick (1998) [1969]. Six-Guns and Saddle Leather: A Bibliography of Books and Pamphlets on Western Outlaws and Gunmen (2 ed.). Mineola, New York: Dover Publications. p. 81. ISBN 9780486400358. Retrieved 2020-08-21. These stories first appeared in men's magazines...
  16. ^ Magic Cook Book: The Key to Kitchen Economy, prepared by the Food Editors of True Story Magazine. New York: Bartholomew House. 1950. LCCN 50011967.
  17. ^ Brent, Rafer, ed. (1958). Great Pioneer Heroes: True Stories of the Men Who Made America. New York: Bartholomew House. LCCN 58007883.
  18. ^ Lamarr, Hedy (1966). Ecstasy and Me: My Life as a Woman. New York: Bartholomew House. LCCN 66025426.
  19. ^ Baker, Trudy; Jones, Rachel (1969). Coffee, Tea or Me?: The Uninhibited Memoirs of Two Airline Stewardesses. New York: Bartholomew House. LCCN 67017141.
  20. ^ Schapp, Dick (1968-09-09). "An UnaBRidgEd Yarn". New York. Retrieved 2020-08-21 – via Google Books.
  21. ^ Brasselle, Keefe (1968). The CanniBal$: a Novel About Television's Savage Chieftains. Bartholomew House. OCLC 700338229.
  22. ^ "Carolyn A. Kenmore Married to Dentist". The New York Times. 1976-12-19. p. FS-65. Retrieved 2020-08-21.
  23. ^ Kenmore, Carolyn (1969). Mannequin: My Life as a Model. New York: Bartholomew House. LCCN 79079434.
  24. ^ Murphy, George; (with) Lasky, Victor (1970). Say ... Didn't You Used to Be George Murphy?. New York: Bartholomew House. OCLC 1089565784.
  25. ^ "Macfadden Acquires Assets In Two Separate Deals". Business Publisher. 17 April 2000.

External links[edit]