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St. Louis Post-Dispatch

St. Louis Post Dispatch logo.png
St. Louis Post Dispatch cover 11.25.2014.jpg
November 25, 2014 front page of the
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
TypeDaily newspaper
FormatCompact (March 23, 2009)
Owner(s)Lee Enterprises
PublisherRay Farris[1]
EditorGilbert Bailon
FoundedDecember 12, 1878
by Joseph Pulitzer
Headquarters900 North Tucker Boulevard
St. Louis, Missouri 63101
United States
Circulation98,104 Daily
157,543 Sunday
(September 2016)[2]
ISSN1930-9600
OCLC number1764810
Websitewww.stltoday.com

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch is the major regional newspaper in St. Louis, Missouri, serving St. Louis City and County, St. Charles County, the Metro East and surrounding counties (roughly, the Greater St. Louis area). It is the only daily newspaper in the city. The publication has received 18 Pulitzer Prizes.[3]

The paper is owned by Lee Enterprises of Davenport, Iowa, which purchased Pulitzer, Inc. in 2005 in a cash deal valued at $1.46 billion.

The paper is sold at $2 daily or $4 Sundays/Thanksgiving Day. May be higher outside adjacent counties/states. Sales tax is included at newsracks.

Platform

On April 10, 1907, Pulitzer wrote what became known as the paper's platform:

I know that my retirement will make no difference in its cardinal principles, that it will always fight for progress and reform, never tolerate injustice or corruption, always fight demagogues of all parties, never belong to any party, always oppose privileged classes and public plunderers, never lack sympathy with the poor, always remain devoted to the public welfare, never be satisfied with merely printing news, always be drastically independent, never be afraid to attack wrong, whether by predatory plutocracy or predatory poverty.[4]

History

Early years

In 1878, Joseph Pulitzer purchased the bankrupt St. Louis Dispatch at a public auction[5] and merged it with the St. Louis Evening Post to create the St. Louis Post and Dispatch, whose title was soon shortened to its current form. He appointed John A. Cockerill as the managing editor. Its first edition, 4,020 copies of four pages each, appeared on Dec. 12, 1878.

In 1882, James Overton Broadhead ran for US Congress against John Glover. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, at Cockerill's direction, ran a number of articles questioning Broadhead's role in a lawsuit between a gaslight company and the city; Broadhead never responded to the charges.[6] Broadhead's friend and law partner, Alonzo W. Slayback, publicly defended Broadhead, asserting that the St. Louis Post-Dispatch was nothing more than a "blackmailing sheet." The next day, 13 Oct 1882, Cockerill re-ran an offensive "card" by John Glover that the paper had published the prior November (Nov. 11, 1881). Incensed, Slayback barged into Cockerill's offices at the paper demanding an apology. Cockerill shot and killed Slayback; he claimed self-defense, and a pistol was allegedly found on Slayback's body. A grand jury refused to indict Cockerill for murder, but the economic consequences for the paper were severe. Therefore, in May 1883, Pulitzer sent Cockerill to New York to manage the New York World for him.[7]

The Post-Dispatch was one of the first daily newspapers to print a comics section in color, on the back page of the features section, styled the "Everyday Magazine."[citation needed]

20th century

At one time, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch had the second-largest news bureau in Washington, D.C. of any newspaper in the Midwestern United States.[8]

After his retirement, generations of Pulitzers guided the newspaper, ending when great-grandson Joseph Pulitzer IV left the company in 1995.

The Post-Dispatch was characterized by a liberal editorial page and columnists, including Marquis Childs. The editorial page was noted also for political cartoons by Daniel R. Fitzpatrick, who won the 1955 Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning,[9] and Bill Mauldin, who won the Pulitzer for editorial cartooning in 1959.

Several months prior to the anniversary edition, the newspaper published a 63rd anniversary tribute to "Our Own Oddities", a lighthearted feature that ran from 1940 to 1990.

During the presidency of Harry S. Truman, the paper was one of his most outspoken critics. It associated him with the Pendergast machine in Kansas City, and constantly attacked his integrity.

In 1950, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch sent a reporter to Brazil to cover the 1950 FIFA World Cup. The reporter paid for his own travelling expenses and was the only U.S. reporter in all of Brazil covering the event.[10]

In 1959 the St. Louis Globe-Democrat entered into a joint operating agreement with the Post-Dispatch. The Post–Globe operation merged advertising, printing functions and shared profits. The Post-Dispatch, distributed evenings, had a smaller circulation than the Globe-Democrat, a morning daily. The Globe-Democrat folded in 1983, leaving the Post-Dispatch as the only daily newspaper in the region.[11]

In August 1973 a Teamsters union representing Globe and Post-Dispatch staffers went on strike, halting production for six weeks.[12]

21st century

St. Louis Post-Dispatch headquarters

On Jan.13, 2004, the Post-Dispatch published a 125th anniversary edition, which included some highlights of the paper's 125 years:

On Jan. 31, 2005, Michael Pulitzer announced the sale of Pulitzer, Inc. and all its assets, including the Post-Dispatch and a small share of the St. Louis Cardinals, to Lee Enterprises of Davenport, Iowa, for $1.46 billion. He said no family members would serve on the board of the merged company.

On March 12, 2007, the paper eliminated 31 jobs, mostly in its circulation, classified phone rooms, production, purchasing, telephone operations and marketing departments.[13] Several rounds of layoffs have followed.

On March 23, 2009, the paper converted to a compact style every day from the previous broadsheet Sunday through Friday and tabloid on Saturday.

On May 4, 2012, the Post-Dispatch named a new editor, Gilbert Bailon.

In 2015, the paper was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news photography for its coverage of protests in Ferguson, Mo.

It is the fifth-largest newspaper in the midwestern United States, and is the 26th-largest newspaper in the U.S.[14]

Circulation

Circulation dropped for the daily paper from 213,472 to 191,631 to 178,801 for the two years after 2010, ending on September 30, 2011, and September 30, 2012. The Sunday paper also decreased from 401,427 to 332,825 to 299,227.[15] The circulation as of September 30, 2016 was 98,104 daily and 157,543 Sunday.[2]

According to a 2017 press release from Lee Enterprises, the paper reaches more than 792,600 readers each week and stltoday.com has roughly 67 million page views a month.[16]

Weatherbird

First appearance of the Weatherbird, February 11, 1901

On Feb. 11, 1901, the paper introduced a front-page feature called the "Weatherbird", a cartoon bird accompanying the daily weather forecast. "Weatherbird" is the oldest continuous cartoon in the United States today. Created by Harry B. Martin who drew it through 1903, it has since been drawn by Oscar Chopin (1903–1910); S. Carlisle Martin (1910–1932); Amadee Wohlschlaeger (1932–1981); Albert Schweitzer, the first one to draw the Weatherbird in color (1981–1986); and Dan Martin (1986–present).[17]

Notable people

See also

References

  1. ^ REPORTS, FROM STAFF. "New publisher named at Post-Dispatch". stltoday.com. Archived from the original on 24 August 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Post-Dispatch ups buyout offer to 20 employees". St. Louis Business Journal. February 3, 2017. Archived from the original on May 22, 2017.
  3. ^ "Pulitzer prizes won by the Post-Dispatch". stltoday.com. Retrieved 2018-07-01.
  4. ^ St. Louis Post-Dispatch Platform from the newspaper's website.
  5. ^ Jolley, Laura R. "Joseph Pulitzer". Missouri Biographies for Students. Archived from the original on October 17, 2015. Retrieved October 29, 2015.
  6. ^ Shepley, Carol Ferring. Movers and Shakers, Scalawags and Suffragettes: Tales from Bellefontaine Cemetery. Missouri History Museum: St. Louis, 2008.
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-03-15. Retrieved 2013-07-29.
  8. ^ Tady, Megan (February 3, 2009). "Washington Reporters' Mass Exodus". Archived from the original on February 6, 2009. Retrieved February 7, 2009.
  9. ^ "Daniel R. Fitzpatrick of St. Louis Post-Dispatch". www.pulitzer.org. Retrieved 2018-07-01.
  10. ^ Hanc, John (10 June 2010). "Walter Bahr reflects on the day the US beat England and stunned the soccer world". AARP. Archived from the original on 11 June 2018. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
  11. ^ "ST. LOUIS GLOBE-DEMOCRAT ANNOUNCES IT WILL CLOSE THIS YEAR". The New York Times. 7 November 1983. Archived from the original on 28 June 2017. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
  12. ^ "Post‐Dispatch in St. Louis Publishes After 6 Weeks". Associated Press. 6 October 1973. Archived from the original on 29 June 2017. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
  13. ^ "St. Louis Post Dispatch to cut 31 Jobs", St. Louis Business Journal, March 12, 2007.
  14. ^ Top 100 Newspapers in the United States Archived 2016-04-16 at the Wayback Machine., Accessed August 17, 2016.
  15. ^ As of September 30, 2012 "2012 Top Media Outlets: Newspapers, Blogs, Consumer Magazines, Social Networks, and Websites". BurrellesLuce. January 2013. Archived from the original on March 22, 2013. Retrieved March 21, 2013.
  16. ^ "St. Louis Post-Dispatch named Lee's 2017 Enterprise of the Year". Lee Enterprises. Retrieved 2018-07-01.
  17. ^ "St. Louis Public Library UPDATE: A Tribute to Amadee". St. Louis Public Library, City of St. Louis. September 4, 2014. Archived from the original on September 15, 2016. Retrieved September 8, 2016.
  18. ^ Johnston, David Cay (January 8, 2007), "" Archived 2017-06-09 at the Wayback Machine.. The New York Times.
  19. ^ "When Titanic sank in 1912, P-D reporter Carlos Hurd landed the story of a lifetime". St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
  20. ^ "Marguerite Martyn Dies; Artist, Writer," St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 17, 1948, page 5A Archived December 21, 2016, at the Wayback Machine.
  21. ^ "Louis J. Rose: investigative reporter exposed St. Louis corruption". stltoday.com. Archived from the original on 28 August 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2018.

Further reading

  • Jim McWilliams, Mark Twain in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 1874–1891 (Troy, New York: Whitston Publishing Company, 1997).
  • Merrill, John C. and Harold A. Fisher. The world's great dailies: profiles of fifty newspapers (1980) pp 286–93
  • Daniel W. Pfaff, Joseph Pulitzer II and the Post-Dispatch: A Newspaperman's Life (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1991).
  • Julian S. Rammelkamp, Pulitzer's Post-Dispatch, 1878–1883 (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1967).
  • Charles G. Ross and Carlos F. Hurd, The Story of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (St. Louis: Pulitzer Publishing, 1944).
  • The St. Louis Post-Dispatch as Appraised by Ten Distinguished Americans (St. Louis, 1926).
  • Orrick Johns, Time of Our Lives: The Story of My Father and Myself, (New York, 1937). George Sibley Johns, father of the author, was editor of the Post-Dispatch for many years, and was the last of Joseph Pulitzer's "Fighting Editors".
  • Dan Martin, The story of the First 100 Years of the St. Louis Post Dispatch Weatherbird (St. Louis, 2001).

External links