Curious names of newspapers…

December 26, 2011 by  
Email This Post Email This Post | Print This Post Print This Post

There is a piece in Oswald’s “Printing In The Americas” which discusses early names of newspapers which is interesting and worth sharing with fellow collectors:

“The names selected for early American newspapers afford material for interesting study. The world “News”, now so common, was not used except in combination with some other name. Such names as “Museum” and “Repository”, that would in these hustling journalistic days be fatal designations, appear frequently in the colonial list. The most overworked word among them all was  “Gazette”. Every district & nearly every town had a “Gazette”. Several had more than one. Three numbers under that name were published under different ownerships at the same time in Williamsburg, Virginia, & three with the same title but with different subtitles were published at the same time at both Richmond, Virginia and Charleston, South Carolina.

The “Mercury”, signifying alertness and swiftness, was a popular newspaper name. There were militant titles like the “Scourge”, “Inquisitor”, “Anti-Monarchist and Republican Watchman” “Sun of Liberty” and “Tree of Liberty”, and conciliatory titles like the “Olive Branch”, the “Philanthropist” and the “Missionary”. The “Lighthouse” and the “Intelligencer” would each seem to give promise of a certain amount of intellectuality, while at the opposite pole we find the “Idiot”, published in 1810 in Boston…”.

Other interesting titles of the pre-1820 era found in Brigham include: “Federal Spy” “Genius of Liberty” “Mirror of the Times” “Minerva” “Oracle of Dauphin” “People’s Friend” “Polar Star” “Rural Visiter” “Torch Light” “American Constellation” “Post-Angel” “Anti-Aristocrat” “Asylum” “Backwoodsman” “Kaleidoscope & Literary Rambler” “Boston Satirist” “Strength of the People” “Bye-Stander” “Candid Review” “Cornucopia” “Crisis” “Mountain Echo” “Engine of Liberty” “Political Banquet & Farmer’s Feast” “Honest American” “Magic Lantern” “Occasional Reverberator” “Spirit of ’76” “Temple of Reason” “Trump of Fame” “Wasp” “Temperate Zone” and so many more.

If you liked this post, you may also enjoy...


Feel free to leave a comment...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!