Not to be confused with the British Cabinet Minister John Reid.
Despite recent pride in John Reed, he was not fond of the city of his birth. According to his own writings, he left Portland as soon as he could, to attend Harvard University in 1910, and never looked back.
While in Europe covering the events of World War I, Reed heard about the brewing Bolshevik Revolution, and went to Russia in 1917. His experiences and interviews with Vladimir Lenin became the subject of a book Ten Days that Shook the World.
Upon dying in the Soviet Union, he became the only American buried in Red Square.
A perennial urban legend in Reed's home town is that Reed College was named for this journalist. Although Reed College's unofficial and tongue-in-cheek motto is "Atheism, Communism, and Free Love", there is no truth to this rumor.