First newspapers in Missouri…

July 19, 2010 by  
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It was in 1808 when the first printing press arrived in what is now the state of Missouri, which was the Territory of Louisiana at the time. That was in St. Louis, which had about 1000 inhabitants at the time.  Previous to moving to St. Louis, Joseph Charless, the printer, worked on a newspaper in Lexington, Kentucky in 1803, and then 4 years later was involved in the “Gazette” of Louisville. And it was on July 12, 1808 when Charless printed the first edition of the “Missouri Gazette“, the first newspaper in Missouri. He had 170 subscribers at the time, many of whom paid in flour, corn, beef or pork to the value of the $3 annual subscription. He changed the title to the “Louisiana Gazette” in 1809, but then when Congress created the Missouri Territory in 1812, the paper again became the “Missouri Gazette“.

Not uncommon to early printers, Charless had made many enemies through his newspaper, prompting opponents to head a movement to bring another printer into town. It was in 1815 when Joshua Norvell arrived in town, and in May of that year printed his first issue of the “Western Journal“. He sold it within two years, when the new printer changed the name on May 17, 1817 to the “Western Emigrant“. It again changed hands & title again in another two years, to the “St. Louis Enquirer“.

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3 Responses to “First newspapers in Missouri…”

  1. David on November 30th, 2014 3:45 am

    The Missouri Gazette has been in rebuild by Photosforyou LLC and publishes daily online.

  2. Cathie on February 19th, 2024 10:41 pm

    I have an original copy of this and would like to find if a good home

  3. GuyHeilenman on March 12th, 2024 8:53 am

    Please contact us at


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