||First issue of Confidential is published.
The press run is 150,000 copies.
and columnist Walter Winchell, pleased with a Confidential story taking his side
in a controversy, begins promoting the magazine, boosting sales
||Confidential runs exposing the
sexual indiscretion of the celebrities raning from scientist Robert
Oppenheimer (an affair with a leftist medical student) to Lucy's
husband Desi Arnaz (encounters with "vice dollies").
||Circulation of Confidential hits 5 million.
Stories published during the year include Tab Hunter (a "pajama party"
for young men), Marlene Dietrich ("playing both sides of the
street" and having an affair with "a blonde Amazon"), and Robert
Mitchum (exposing himself and covering his private parts with ketchup
at a private dinner party) and a story about Joe DiMaggio recruiting
Frank Sinatra to assault the new lover of his ex-wife, Marilyn Monroe.
||As the Confidential continues to publish
stories about various Hollywood stars and their scandals, publisher
Robert Harrison receives visits from thugs and several death threats.
||The March 1957 issue
of Confidential features a
story suggesting that actress Maureen O'Hara had sex in the balcony of
Grauman's Chinese Theatre. The story causes O'Hara to file a
libel suit and become a witness for the prosecution in the criminal
||Under heavy pressure
from Hollywood to do something about Confidential,
General Pat Brown announces that he will attempt to indict Confidential and Robert Harrison
for criminal libel and the publication of obscene materials.
||A California grand
jury indicts eleven people and five companies (including Harrison and Confidential and its sister
publications) for criminal libel and the publication or distribution of
obscene materials. The indictment also charges violations of
California's business code for the articles "The Pill That Ends
Unwanted Pregancies" and "Pega Palo--The Vine That Makes You Virile."
||The July 1957 issue
of Confidential is barred
from distribution in California. (The cover story is "Why
Liberace's Theme Song Should be 'Mad About the Boy'" and alleges
Liberace had a homosexual relationship with a press agent.)
||The Confidential trial opens in the Los
Angeles courtroom of Judge Herbert V. Walker. (Seeking to avoid
defense subpoenas, many of the Hollywood stars mentioned in Confidential stories are
temporarily residing at sea or elsewhere outside of California's
calls its first witness in the Confidential
trial, Howard Rushmore.
Attorney William Ritzi begins reading Confidential
stories (such as "Only the Birds and the Bees saw What Dorothy
Dandridge Did in the Woods") into the court record
|September 4, 1957
begins her testimony as a prosecution witness.
||In a statement in
the September issue of Confidential,
Harrison defends his magazine against charges of libel and obscenity.
On September 16, the Confidential
case goes to the jury.
||The jury announces
that it has been unable to reach a verdict. The jury was split,
seven for conviction and five for acquittal. Prosecutor Ritzi
announces that he intends to retry the case.
announces that Confidential will no longer publish stories about the
private lives of Hollywood stars. The state drops all charges
except for one count of conspiring to publish obscene materials,
carrying a $5000 fine.
witness, and former Confidential employee Howard Rushmore shoots his
wife and then himself inside a New York City taxi.
||In a statement to
his readers, Robert Harrison says that Confidential will change direction
and begin focusing more on politics
||Thomas Wolfe published and article in Esquire about Robert Harrison: "Confidential Magazine: Reflections in Tranquility by the Former Owner, Robert Harrison, Who Managed to Get Away with It."|