early history of
newspapers in the county is given by Dr. John T. Plummer in his "
Historical Sketch " published in 1857. As he came to Richmond before
the first paper printed in Richmond was discontinued, he wrote from
personal knowledge. His sketch, therefore, is regarded as the most
reliable source of information, and contains the substance of the
following history of newspapers in Richmond to the date of his book.
Wayne County, Indiana
published in Richmond was the Richmond
Weekly Intelligencer. Dr.
Plummer says he had no means of ascertaining when it was begun, but a
number was certainly published so early as December 29, 1821. The
printing office was on Front street, south of Main. Its editor was
Elijah Lacey, who had associated with him as publisher John Scott,
afterward judge, and editor of the Western
Emporium, published at
Centerville. It was discontinued, he says, in 1824.
The second paper was the
Public Ledger the first number
of which was dated March 6, 1824. Its
first editor and publisher was Edmund S. Buxton, until November
11,1825, when it was brought under the firm of Buxton & Walling,
and by them continued about a year. It then passed into the hands of
Samuel B. Walling, the late-named partner, [1826,] and was discontinued
in June, 1828. It was printed in a small one-story frame house on lot
2, Smith's addition.
A third paper, the
Richmond Palladium, was commenced January 1, 1831, by Nelson Boon, who
conducted it but six months, when it passed into the hands of Thomas J.
Larsh, and was conducted by him eighteen months; next by David P.
Holloway one year; by Finley & Holloway two years; by John Finley
one year. It then [Jan. 1837] passed to David P. Holloway and Benj. W.
Davis, by whom, under the firm of Holloway & Davis, it has been
continued to the present time, though edited chiefly for the last ten
years by Davis, his partner having been during this time at the city of
The Jeffersonian was
established in 1836 by an association of Democrats called " Hickory
Club," and edited principally by Samuel E. Perkins, afterward a judge
of the Supreme Court, and one Talcott, a young lawyer. In the fall of
1837, Lynde Elliott purchased the establishment, and published and
edited the paper until 1839, when its publication was suspended, and
the printing materials became the property of Daniel Reid. In the same
year, Samuel E. Perkins bought the property of Reid, and revived the
Jeffersonian, which he edited and published till 1840, when James
Elder became its proprietor, by whom it was published until 1804, from
which time its publication was for several years suspended. In 1870,
Mr. Elder revived the paper, or rather, perhaps, established a new one,
entitled Democratic Herald,
which, in 1871, was purchased by Wm.
Thistlethwaite, its present proprietor.
The Indiana Farmer was
commenced, in 1851, by Holloway & Dennis, and was soon discontinued.
The Broad Axe of Freedom
was established in 1855, by Jamison & Johnson, journeymen printers
in the Palladium office. It
soon changed hands, and, by a succession of
proprietors, it was continued until the close of 1864, when the press
and type were purchased by Isaac H. Julian, and the paper merged in the
Indiana True Republican,
previously published by Mr. Julian at
Centerville, and removed by him to Richmond, Jan.1,1865, when its name
was changed to Indiana Radical.
It is still published by him.
The Lily, previously
published in New York city by Amelia Bloomer, was transplanted in
Richmond, in 1854, and was continued by Mary E. Birdsall, a few years,
and subsequently, for a short time, by Mary F. Thomas, at present a
physician in Richmond.
The Independent Press was
commenced by Geo. W. Wood, in 1861. It was issued as a daily three
months, and weekly about six months. In 1862, Calvin R. Johnson, Thomas
L. Baylies, and Robert H. Howard, bought the Press and started The
Telegram, July 4,1862. In the fall of 1863, Johnson retired, and
Baylies about six months after. Howard continued it until
1867, after which Dr. James W. Salter published it about a year and a
half, and sold it to Alfred G. Wilcox, who took into partnership James
M. Coe. After about six months, Daniel Surface, from Cincinnati, became
a partner; and the proprietors assumed the name of the Telegram
Company, under which name it is still published by Messrs. Surface and
Coe, Mr. Wilcox having retired soon after the company was formed. Mr.
Surface, since his first connection with the paper, has been its
The Humming Bird was
started by J. E. Avery & Co., May 5, 1866. It was sold a few months
after to A. J. Strickland, from whom it passed, in March, 1867, to
Crawley & Maag. In August, 1869, Crawley retired, and Maag has
since been its sole proprietor.
A small quarto literary
paper, called the Family Schoolmaster,
was commenced in Richmond,
March, 1839, by Holloway A Davis, and ended with its 34th number.
year 1824, John
Scott, who had been associated with Elijah Lacey in publishing the
Weekly Intelligencer in
Richmond, commenced the publication of the
Western Emporium at
Centerville. How long it was published, we are not
informed. Scott subsequently committed suicide by hanging himself, at
Newspapers at Centerville.
In or about the year
1832, the Western Times was
started by Septimus Smith. He was a lawyer
and for a time probate judge; a man of literary taste and attainments.
He was a brother of the late Oliver H. Smith. Andrew Bulla, son of the
late Wm.. Bulla, was for a while associated with Mr. Smith in the
publication of the Times.
They both died nearly at the same time, of
consumption. They were succeeded, it is believed, by J. A. Hall
and Giles C. Smith, the latter being then a teacher in the County
Seminary, and since a Methodist minister. Their successor was
Nelson Boon, from Eaton, Ohio. He, too, died soon after, or in the
latter part of 1834.
About the year 1835,
Samuel C. Meredith started the People's
Advocate, Democratic in
politics, the previous papers having been very moderately
Whig. It was edited for a time by James B. Haile, a
teacher in the Seminary. Meredith, finding it did not " pay," changed
it to a whig paper under the name of Wayne
County Chronicle. It was
edited about a year by Elder Samuel K. Hoshour, when, Meredith having
removed to Illinois, the paper was succeeded by the National Patriot,
owned by somebody " down East," and edited by Richard Cole. Not
succeeding well in the enterprise, he soon discontinued the
publication. He was afterward elected, with another, state printer; and
has since been a missionary to China.
returned, began, in 1841, the Wayne
County Record. Hampden G. Finch was
for a time associate publisher. John B. Stitt became its
Early in 1846, the News
Letter, a literary paper, was started by C. B. Bentley, since,
a long time, conductor of the Brookville
Democrat. H. G. Finch soon
associated himself with Bentley, Many of its leading articles were for
some time written by George W. Julian. It was
continued but about a year.
About this time, a
monthly religious publication, called, it is believed, The Reformer,
was issued by Elder Benjamin Franklin. The term of
its existence is not mentioned.
In 1848, the Free
Territory Sentinel was started as an advocate of the Free Soil movement
of that year, by R. Vaile and P. Smith. In less than a year its name
was changed to the Indiana True
Democrat. About the time the Sentinel
was started, Meredith having gone to California, the Record became the
Whig, under the charge of D.
B. Woods and Stitt. Woods being afterward
killed in California, a printer named Millington took his place with
Stitt for a short time. Meredith returning, he resumed its publication;
but after a few months, finding it a losing affair, he sold out, in
1852, to D. P. Holloway, of the Richmond
Palladium. At the close of
that year, the True Democrat
was removed to Indianapolis and took the
name of Free Democrat.
Nathan Smith then started
the Independent Press, a
small paper, which survived but a few months;
and Centerville was for about a year without a newspaper.
In April, 1854, Hosea S.
Elliott started the Wayne County
Journal, and published also the Class
Mate, a religious monthly. Both soon died. The Weekly
Chronicle was then started by
R. J. Strickland
and G. W.
B. Smith, and continued to June, 1858, when they sold out to W. C.
Moreau, who bought a new press and started the True Republican. In
about three months he sold out to Isaac H. Julian, who, as has been
elsewhere stated, removed it to Richmond.
In 1859, R. J. Strickland
commenced a new paper, (or revived the old one,) under the name of
Wayne Chronicle, which was
published at intervals, until 1863, when it
was removed to Cambridge City.
summer of 1845,
James H. Hunt, who had published a paper at Greenfield, Hancock Co.,
Ind., removed his office to Cambridge and started the Cambridge City
Reveille, which he continued until 1850; after which, it was
about a year by Robert O. Dormer. After a short suspension, it was
revived by Mr. Hunt and his brother Jonathan H. Hunt, and after a few
months removed to Portland, Jay Co. The editor [Hunt] having, on his
death bed, directed it to be removed to a warehouse, the person
employed dumped the types promiscuously into a dry goods box. The
Reveille was Whig in politics.
In 1850, Wm. and Charles
Daily removed the Chronicle 19 press and types from Connersville to
Cambridge City, and published the Cambridge
City News, a Democratic
paper, during the years 1850 and 1851. During the two succeeding years,
it was published by Lafayette Develin; in which time the earlier poems
of Louisa Chitwood, then, and until her death, a poet of rare promise,
made their first appearance in its columns.
In 1852, Whelan
Pritchard, having purchased the office of The Western Reformer at
Milton, removed it to Cambridge, and used it for some time as a job
office. Wheeler & Ryder then started the Cambridge City Item,
edited by Samuel & Hoshour, whose name appeared at the head of
the paper as "Conductor," along with that of Kos Whelan as "Engineer,"
and that of K W. Carey as " Pugilist"
After a few months, by
arrangement with Develin, the two papers were united, under the name of
Cambridge City News and City Item, neutral in politics.
After it had
been published nearly a year, Whelan, Buckingham, and Waltz, in 1855,
published the Daily Item, a
small sheet, foolscap size, devoted to
news, fun, and gossip, which survived only a few months. The office was
then sold to R. J. Strickland, who removed it to Centerville. A part of
the material is said to be still used in the office of the Radical in
In the autumn of 1856,
George B. Seig established the Cambridge
City Bulletin, a weekly
Republican paper, and published it for two years. It was then published
for one year by Kosciusko Whelan. In 1860, the establishment was
purchased by Whelan, Kellar, and Leib, who started a new Republican
paper, named " The Flag of the Free." On the breaking out of the war,
nearly all the employees went into the army, and the paper stopped. The
office was sold, and, after passing through several hands, the press
and types were taken to Little Rock, Arkansas.
In 1864, R. J. Strickland
removed the establishment of the Wayne
County Chronicle to Cambridge
City, and issued the Cambridge City
Journal, a Republican paper, for a
year or longer. The office was then sold to John C. Lutz and Lafayette
Develin, who issued, Jan. 8, 1866, the first number of a Democratic
paper, named Western Mirror.
This had a larger circulation
than any paper previously published here. Mr. Lutz died March 15, 1868,
and the paper was conducted by Mr. Develin until May 13,1869, when the
office was purchased by Henry C. Meredith, who that day commenced the
Cambridge City Tribune, a Republican paper, which is still published
there. Prom June to August, 1870, W. D. Haley was associated with Mr.
Meredith; and since Dec. 22, 1870, W. P. Harding has been associate
editor and proprietor. The paper has a large circulation.
Soon after the sale of
the Mirror to Meredith, L.
L. Dale, of Newcastle, removed his paper,
the Democratic Times, to Cambridge City, where it was issued some eight
or nine months, when he returned to Newcastle.
After Mr. Dale's
departure, T. G. McCaulay, of West Salem, Ohio, published the Cambridge
City Chieftain, a Democratic paper, which, however, after a few