“I had been doing freelance for Acme ever since I had left my job with them in 1935 [!!!]. I went to work for PM in 1940. When the word had first got around that a newspaper like PM was being formed, every newspaperman and photographer in the country tried to get on the staff. Except me. I figured that, if they wanted me, they could come and get me. Sure enough, about a month before publication, I met the editor. He said, “Weegee, you’re doing wonderful work. Be sure to bring your pictures to me.” I replied, “Give me a guarantee, and the bet’s on.” The upshot was that I had a roving assignment from PM for the next four-a-half years. I picked my own stories. When I found a good one, I brought it in. All they had to do was to mail me a weekly check for seventy-five dollars… which they did.
[According to an online inflation calculator, $75 in 1940 has the same buying power as $1,271.44 in 2015.]
Sometimes PM didn’t see me for weeks, I was happy; I got my check every week. When finally I would come into their offices in Brooklyn they would greet me with, “Welcome home, Weegee! Where have you been, on vacation?” I’d say, “Look, what do you want me to do, go out and commit a murder?”
One of the reasons PM eventually folded was that it was ahead of the times. There were not quite as many eggheads around then as there are now. All the lost souls used to read PM and swear by it. You could tell PM readers on sight. They looked like people from another planet waiting for somebody to take them to their leader… which of course, was PM.
Weegee by Weegee, 1961, pp. 85-86