Promoted as the world's leading magazine of the paranormal, it has published expert opinions and personal experiences relating to UFOs, psychic abilities, ghosts and hauntings, cryptozoology, alternative medicine, and other Fortean phenomena for a devoted readership worldwide.
Though Fate is aimed at a popular audience and tends to emphasize personal anecdotes about the paranormal, American writer and frequent Fate contributor Jerome Clark1 asserts the magazine features a substantial amount of serious research and investigation, and occasional debunking of dubious claims.
Established in 1948 by Clark Publishing Company, the first edition of Fate hit world newsstands in the Spring. Co-founded by Ray Palmer, editor of the Amazing Stories magazine, and Curtis Fuller, an accomplished editor in his own right, the magazine's inaugural edition featured an article by Kenneth Arnold who recounted in it his amazing UFO encounter in 1947. Arnold's sighting marked the beginning of the modern UFO era, and his story propelled the fledgling Fate to national recognition.
Curtis Fuller and his wife Mary took full control of Fate in 1955, when Palmer sold his interest in the venture. The Fullers expanded the magazine's focus, and increased readership to well over 100,000 subscribers.
Fate was sold to Llewellyn Publications in 1988. In his farewell column, Curtis Fuller wrote, "Our purpose throughout this long time has been to explore and to report honestly the strangest facts of this strange world and the ones that don't fit into the general beliefs of the way things are."
The magazine underwent a facelift in 1994, when Llewellyn decided to change it from digest size to a full size, full color magazine.
The magazine celebrated its 50th year of publication in 1998. When asked to comment on how a magazine like Fate had beat the odds and survived through five decades, Carl Llewellyn Weschcke said, "No product, especially a magazine, can stay around for fifty years unless it meets a need. Fate recognizes that the impossible can be possible; we explore the unknown so that it can be known."
September 2001 marked the beginning of a new era for the long-running magazine, as Phyllis Galde, Editor-in-Chief, took over publication. Galde has continued Fate's reporting of unusual events and active reader involvement in shaping the content of the magazine.