Aldo Moro's efforts to secure his freedom changed the course of how terrorism was practiced.
Before Tweets and texts, an American general had a terse response for his German counterpart.
For decades, wire service journalism was a short course in mental order and organization.
Chivalrous rhetoric no longer plays much of a part in most newspaper, TV and online writing.
Once, so-called purple prose ruled disaster coverage, and it's making a comeback.
Letters to the editor in letter form are all but extinct, but their legacy lives on.
In 1946, Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh begged U.S. President Harry Truman to help him, unsuccessfully.
A fan letter to a respected New York Times columnist produced a lifetime of advice.
"No style will please all readers, but lack of any style tends to confuse and irritate them."
For Helen Gahagan Douglas, Watergate was years in the works, which she learned the hard way.
"I must tell you about this new idea of mine and how ... you are involved..."
Quick-wittedness, once a staple of clever letter writing, has lately been swamped by symbols.