Scott County, Missouri
Contributed by: Margaret Cline Harmon (3/18/98)
As a genealogist and historian, I appreciate the value of local newspapers. They are windows in which to glance at our communities. Missouri has a rich newspaper history. Joseph Charless came to the Missouri territory and started the state's first newspaper, the MISSOURI GAZETTE, in 1808 at St. Louis.
From this beginning, the role of the press has been vital in helping develop Missouri into what it has become today. In 1893, area news reporters formally organized the Southeast Missouri Press Association in Poplar Bluff. In the early years the Association met twice a year, spring and fall, in various towns throughout the district. Members usually met were railroads traveled because that was the quickest mode of transportation in those days. In 1893, Missouri had 782 newspapers. Today, it has approximately 300 total newspapers in the state. The death of small community newspapers is very sad, but we are grateful to members of the Southeast Missouri Press Association for continuing the tradition.
Scott County, Missouri has an interesting newspaper history too. Listed below are Scott County Newspapers you may have never heard of, or have forgotten. The intent of this list is to honor the people who worked on these newspapers. We are grateful to those individuals who documented the local history and provided public information and entertainment to their readers.
Express 1st paper in Benton, date unknown
Record July 1867 - August 1908
Express-Record Consolidated by S. H. Smith
Scott County Newsboy February 1888 to February 1897
BEE (bi-weekly) May 14, 1904 - unknown
Scott County Kicker November 9, 1901 - April 17, 1917
Scott County Democrat January 7, 1909 to May 29, 1980
The Review 1st paper in Chaffee, date unknown
Signal Sept 15, 1910 - July 6, 1967
Signal & North Scott County News - September 6, 1967- Present
Dispatch March 2, 1867 - March 23, 1872
Jimplicate 1902, Dec. 24, 1914 - Aug. 27, 1981
Scott County Citizen January 1 - December 31, 1909
Scott County Banner January 1, 1914 - August 4, 1921
Scott County Citizen October 18, 1907 - December 18, 1908
Oran Leader April 15, 1910 to May 10, 1912
Oran News January 11, 1957 - April 28, 1967
Scott County Democrat October 18, 1973 - December 5, 1974
Jimplicate September 3, 1981 - January 28, 1988
Star of Sikeston January 1884 - unknown
Herald (*) 1900 - June 9, 1960
Scott County Democrat 1901 & 1902
General Baptist August 23, 1905 - December 26, 1906
Enterprise May 4, 1906 - December 24, 1909
Standard January 9, 1914 - March 8, 1918
Twice-A-Week Standard 1918
Standard (semi-weekly) January 3, 1919 - May 30, 1947
Missouri Co-Operator 1923
Southeast Missouri World 1939 - A Black Newspaper
Daily Sikeston Standard June 2, 1947 - September 1, 1989
Democrat Advertiser 1975 - ?
Standard Democrat September 3, 1989 - Present
All papers were published weekly, except those noted and the Daily Sikeston Standard was, and Standard Democrat continue to be, published daily.
(*) Clint Denman, publisher of the Herald, also published a widely distributed area newspaper, International Sunday School Lesson. In 1957, he was honored by the School of Journalism at University of Missouri for Distinguished Service to Journalism.
Information was obtained from Goodspeed's History of Southeast Missouri, and the State Historical Society of Missouri book, Missouri Newspapers On Microfilm at the State Historical Society of Missouri and State of Missouri Official Manual For the Years: 1965-1966. Many of these newspapers have been copied to microfilm and are available through the State Historical Society of Missouri, 1020 Lowry Street, Columbia, Missouri 65201-7298. You may also refer to Missouri Newspapers, by William H. Taft, for more information on the subject. I owe a special thanks to Mildred Wallhausen, Historian for the SEMO Press Association for her contribution toward this summary of Scott County Newspapers.
As stated earlier, the demise of small community newspapers is sad. The disappearance of the small town main street shopping areas, and other factors have made it financially impossible for many small newspapers to succeed. Television can't cover the local events in detail and this is why small town newspapers should continue, with the full support of local citizens.
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