Arthur Watterson Hoppe (April 23, 1925 – February 1, 2000) was a popular columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle for more than 40 years. He was known for satirical and allegorical columns that skewered the self-important. Many columns featured whimsical characters such as expert-in-all-things Homer T. Pettibone and a presidential candidate named Nobody. Occasionally, Hoppe reined in his humor for poignant columns on serious topics, such as "To Root Against Your Country," a noted 1971 column against the Vietnam War. Hoppe began at the Chronicle as a copy boy in 1949 and was promoted to reporter before beginning his own column. At the peak of its popularity, Hoppe's column appeared in the Chronicle five days a week and was syndicated in more than 100 newspapers nationwide. His close friends included fellow columnists Russell Baker and Art Buchwald.
Hoppe in 1994
Arthur Watterson Hoppe
April 23, 1925
|Died||February 1, 2000 (aged 74)|
Hoppe received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Society of Newspaper Columnists in 1996. On his own initiative, he released fellow Chronicle columnist Herb Caen from a mutual vow to accept a special 1996 Pulitzer Prize. He died from complications of lung cancer in February 2000, aged 74, survived by his wife Gloria and four children.
- The Love Everybody* Crusade (* Except Antarcticans) (Doubleday, 1963)
- Dreamboat, novel (Doubleday, 1964)
- Our San Francisco, contributor with Kenneth Rexroth & others (Diablo Press 1964)
- The Perfect Solution to Absolutely Everything (Doubleday, 1968)
- Mr Nixon, and My Other Problems (Chronicle Books, 1971)
- Miss Lollipop and the Doom Machine, novel (Doubleday, 1973)
- Tiddling Tennis (Viking, 1977)
- The Marital Arts (Arbor House, 1985)
- Humor, Hope, and Humanity's Future (Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, 1987)
- Having a Wonderful Time: My First Half Century as a News Paper Man, memoir (Chronicle Books 1995)
- Above San Francisco, photography by Robert Cameron (Cameron & Co., 1998)
According to an obituary he also wrote two plays.
- Obituary in the San Francisco Chronicle
- National Society of Newspaper Columnists Hall of Fame