About Sports Illustrated Magazine

First Issue:
August 16, 1954

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The History of Sports Illustrated Magazine

Sports Illustrated magazine, founded in 1954 by Henry Luce and Clare Boothe Luce, has been a prominent publication in the world of sports journalism. Here’s a brief history of Sports Illustrated magazine from its inception through 2022:

1954 – Founding: Sports Illustrated was first published on August 16, 1954. It was founded by Henry Luce, the influential publisher of Time, Life, and Fortune magazines. The magazine was known for its innovative combination of in-depth reporting and photography, bringing sports stories to life.

1955 – First Cover: The magazine’s first cover featured Milwaukee Braves slugger Eddie Mathews. The cover became iconic, setting the tone for future issues.

1964 – Swimsuit Issue: The first Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue was published as a one-time supplement. Over the years, it would become an annual tradition and a major pop culture phenomenon.

1970s – Expansion: Sports Illustrated expanded its coverage beyond traditional sports, including in-depth reporting on sports personalities and social issues.

1989 – CNN/SI: Sports Illustrated partnered with CNN to create CNN/SI, a 24-hour sports news television network. The network was later discontinued.

1990s – Multimedia and Digital: Sports Illustrated embraced multimedia and launched its website, offering online sports content to a wider audience.

2000s – Celebrating 50 Years: In 2004, Sports Illustrated celebrated its 50th anniversary with special issues and retrospectives.

2010s – Digital Transition: The magazine continued to adapt to the digital age, focusing on online content and expanding its digital presence.

2020 – Ownership Changes: In early 2020, Sports Illustrated was sold by Meredith Corporation to Authentic Brands Group, a brand development company.

2022 – Ongoing: As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, Sports Illustrated remains a prominent sports media brand, providing in-depth coverage of a wide range of sports, athletes, and related topics. The Swimsuit Issue and annual “Sportsperson of the Year” award are among its enduring traditions.