He's been called one of the greatest reporters of the 20th century, and I totally agree.
North Carolina native and Manhattan transplant Joseph Mitchell, whose oddball character portraits and carefully crafted features for The New Yorker are among the best pieces of journalism ever published, would have turned 100 this month. A few of his enduringly appealing books are being reissued to honor the dapper Southern gentlemen, who died in 1996. I've had his collections of stories on my shelves for years and return to them habitually.
Mitchell's gift for lucid narrative and unfussy prose is truly one of America's greatest literary treasures. Read an excerpt of his work at the Random House site.