Genealogy Trails Calhoun County, Illinois

Calhoun County, IL, Established January 10, 1825
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Source: archive.com
"History of Calhoun County and its people up to the year 1910"
by: Carpenter, George Wilbur

NEWSPAPERS AND POLITICS

A great influence m politics that is sometimes overlooked is that of the newspaper. The first newspaper to be established in Hardin was the "Calhoun County Union", the first issue appeared about April 1, 1861 with Josiah Woodward as editor. The paper was still being published in 1862, but we have no record of how long publication continued.

In 1870, the "Independent", a Democratic paper, was established in Hardin. Since two other papers were started soon after this date, it is likely that this paper lasted but a short time.

The "Calhoun County Democrat" was established in 1871 and continued until 1876. Albert G. Ansell was the editor and publisher. It was a Republican paper.

The "Calhoun Herald" was started in 1872 by a stock company, with John Lammy as editor. In 1876 the plant was sold to Argust and Keating, and in 1879, Greathouse and Argust were the editors and publishers. James McNabb was the editor from 1880 to 1886.

He sold the paper to T. J. Selby,who served as editor until 1890. From 1890 to 1894, John D. Rose was the editor and publisher. H. M. Cornick was in charge of the paper in 1894 and 1895. Charles Lamar was the editor from 1895 to 1902. H. M. Cornich, publisher of the "Calhoun Times", established in 1901, bought the "Herald" and combined the papers as the "Calhoun Herald-Times". In 1903, Charles Lamar bought the entire plant, changed the name back to "Calhoun Herald" and continued as editor and publisher. After Mr. Lamar's death in 1930, the "Herald" was taken over by his son, C. Fred Lamar, who is the editor and publisher at the present time. The "Herald" is a Democratic paper.

In 1894, Thomas D. Bare purchased the "Calhoun Leader", which had been established sometime before in Hardin. He continued to edit this paper until 1898, when he sold it. In 1901, George B, Childs and Mr. Bare established the "Calhoun Republican". In 1902, Bare purchased his partner's interest and continued to edit the paper until about 1910. The paper was taken over by a stock company and Charles Temple acted as the editor until it was discontinued in 1915.

On the first day of April, 1915, the first issue of the "Calhoun News" appeared. The editors and publishers were G. C. Campbell and A. B. Greathouse. The News is an Independent paper.

All of the papers that have been mentioned were published in Hardin, the county seat. Several other newspapers were started in ether towns in the county, but most of them lasted but a short time, One of the most successful of these was the Batchtown "Pilot", which was started in 1880 by John J. Smith. In 1891, he was still publishing the paper.

Papers were also established in Kampsville, Hamburg and Brussels. None of these gained a wide circulation and were soon abandoned.

As will be noticed in the accounts of the different papers, the ownership of the paper frequently changed, and none of the men who served as editors in the early days were men who had been trained in the newspaper work.

Most of them were men who had taught school for awhile or had held some political office and then decided to try their hand at newspaper work. Since most of the men were interested in politics, they devoted a considerable part of their paper to political discussion. The political editorial that is now found in the city papers was then found in the county papers.

This did much to educate the people on public questions and the attacks of the editors of opposing parties did much to keep the county officials of the times from using their offices as a means for personal gain.

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