Newspapers soon followed the advent of settlers in this country, and several were soon in operation. But Butler County, from its nearness to Cincinnati, did not have a press as soon as some other counties of less population. In the columns of Liberty Hall, a newspaper of Cincinnati, under date of April 16, 1813, appears the following:
"BY E. MICHIGAN & CO., OF A NEW WEEKLY PAPER, TO BE ENTITLED
"THE MIAMI GAZETTE.
"An age like the present, portentous beyond any parallel to be found in the history of mankind, will offer the best apology for the multiplication of periodical publications--whose object is: 1st. The diffusion of literature and science in the most enlightened and scientific epoch known within the pale of human knowledge, and, 2d. An early communication of the great political events, both foreign and domestic, which are now agitating every quarter of the globe.
"The proposed paper shall be conducted with the most undeviating impartiality, alike avoiding the petulance of party and the designing misrepresentations of disorganizing partisans, of whatever description they may be. It will be our aim to detail things as they are, following up the lights of truth, according to the best of our perception, and discarding every thing which may have a tendency to mislead the judgement or warp the heart from the best interests of its country. Such is the plan we are determined to pursue.
"1. The Miami Gazette will be published weekly, on a royal sheet, with an elegant new type, in the town of Hamilton, Butler County, and delivered to subscribers within the town. The first number will appear in July.
"2. Yearly price two dollars, if paid in advance; two dollars and fifty cents, if paid within six or twelve months, according to the term subscribed for. But if payment be delayed beyond either period, then three dollars will be demanded. Subscribers receiving their papers by a private post will be charged for the packing and postage an additional fifty cents. Country produce will be received in payment.
"3. Advertisements inserted at the usual rates."
The Gazette does not appear to have ever been issued. But two firms of printers had their eyes fixed on this place, and had sent out notices of their intention to establish a paper. The town was clearly too small for both, and they consolidated. KEEN & STEWART constituted one of the firms, and COLBY & BONNELL the other. The result of their joint labors was entitled the Miami Intelligencer, and the publishers were COLBY, BONNELL & Co.
Mr. James MCBRIDE owned the press and type, which he purchased at Deer Creek, then above Cincinnati, from a Frenchman named MENESSIER. Some use had previously been made of them, but what we are unable to learn. The first number of the journal was dated June 22, 1814. It was printed on a coarse, dingy royal sheet of four columns to the page, or a little larger than a page of Harper’s Weekly. A large cut of the Goddess of Liberty blowing her trumpet was worked in the second number. It had evidently seen hard usage. The newspaper was published in the old Wingate House, corner of Dayton and Water Streets.
In the second number the proprietors have the following card:
"COLBY, BONNELL & Co. submit to their friends, and to the friends of republicanism, the following proposals for publishing in Hamilton, Ohio, a weekly newspaper, to be called Miami Intelligencer.
"From the sheets of the Miami Intelligencer the reader may inform himself of the principles and politics of the editors. However, lest the omission of giving some small outlines of our political opinions might be construed to our prejudice, we have no hesitation in avowing ourselves as American Republicans, not of those pretended Republicans who see but to condemn, who with impunity violate all law and outrage all order, nor of those Republicans who, under a pretended attachment to the principles of Washington, daily contradict by their words and actions every moral and political opinion which that great and good man promulgated--but of those genuine, honest Republicans who are independent enough to condemn, and candid enough to praise, where either may have been deserved; to censure only where censure may be due, and give applause where merit deserves it.
"Although we are the avowed friends of the present administration of our country, yet we never shall become the tool of any man or set of men, be they attached to what party they may, or their station ever so high and their influence ever so extensive.
"The moralist, the poet, and the politician whose productions deserve attention shall find place in our paper for their accommodation; but scurrility or personal abuse shall never disgrace the pages of the Miami Intelligencer. Such are our political opinions; such are the plans which we have determined to pursue, and from them we trust no consideration shall ever induce us to swerve."
This was followed by the
"TERMS OF PUBLICATION.
"1. The first number was published on Wednesday, June 22, on a royal sheet of good paper, in handsome type.
"2. Price to subscribers: Two dollars, if paid in advance, for one year; two dollars and fifty cents, paid within the year; three dollars, if paid after the year expires.
"3. In all cases where the paper is sent by post, there will be an additional charge of fifty cents per year.
"4. Advertisements will be inserted at the usual rates.
"5. Produce will be taken at the market price.
"The subscribers, believing that a consolidation of the establishments of the Volunteer and Miami Intelligencer would be most beneficial in themselves and pleasing to the inhabitants of Butler and the adjoining counties, have formed a union. The Intelligencer shall be published every Wednesday morning.
"Gentlemen who have interested themselves in behalf of either establishment will please accept our thanks. They will confer another favor by sending a list of the subscribers obtained, to this office immediately, or delivering it to the post rider of their district.
"KEEN & STEWART,
"COLBY & BONNELL."
The motto was "Virtue the soul of Freedom." The matter under the editorial head in the number before us is as follows:
"William H. HARRISON, Isaac SHELBY, and Lewis CASS have been appointed, by the President, commissioners to treat with the Indians at Greenville.
"The late arrival of the eastern mail last evening prevented our making copious extracts from our papers, letters, etc. The mail should arrive at noon. We have discovered the cause, and represented the same to the proper department. The imposition will, no doubt, soon be remedied."
Under the head of "Married," we find the following:
"On Thursday last, by William D. JONES, Esq., Mr. Noah WILEY, of Crosby Township, Hamilton County, to Miss Mary BUFFINGTON, of Ross Township, Butler County.
"At the same time, by the same, Mr. William RUSSELL to Miss Roxy HUNGERFORD, both of Ross Township."
Under the date of Paris, April 6, a new French constitution is given. A few of the articles are as follows:
"Extract from the Register of the Conservative Senate, of Wednesday, 6th April.
"ART. 1. The French Government is monarchical and hereditary, from male to male, in order of primogeniture.
"2. The French people call freely to the throne of France, Louis Stanislaus XAVIER, of France, brother of the late king, and after him the other members of the house of Bourbon, in the ancient order.
"2f. The person of the king is sacred and inviolable. All the acts of the government are signed by a minister. The ministers are responsible for all which these acts contain violatory of the laws, public and private liberty, and the rights of the citizens.
"23. The liberty of the press is entire, with the exception of the legal repression of offenses which may result from abuses of that liberty. The senatorial commissions of the liberty of the press and individual liberty are preserved."
It also contains the address of the French Provisional Government, from which we extract, where they speak of Napoleon:
"He never knew how to reign, either in the national interest or in the interest of his own despotism. He has destroyed all that he ought to create; and recreated all that he ought to destroy. He relied only upon force; force now overwhelms him--just reward of senseless ambition.
"At length this unexampled tyranny has ceased, as the allied powers have entered the capital of France.
"Napoleon has governed us like a king of barbarians; Alexander [of Russia] and his magnanimous allies speak only the language of honor, justice, and humanity. They have just reconciled Europe to a brave and happy people.
"People of France! The senate has declared that Napoleon has forfeited his throne. The country is no longer with him."
David MCMECHAN, of Seven-mile, advertises a dark brown mare, strayed or stolen from his residence in Milford Township, about the beginning of April. He offers five dollars reward, and promises to ask no questions in case she is returned.
Michael HAGERMAN and ABRAHAM, PIATT & Co., advertise jointly that about the 4th of July they will have in operation on the Miami River, a half mile below Hamilton, "three cording machines of superior quality."
James P. MORTON "gratefully acknowledges the partiality of a discerning public," and advertises that he has "recommenced boot and shoe making at Mr. PIERSON’s."
Andrew O. RORK says that he has a new cording machine on Four-mile, at SCOTT’s mill.
Samuel MILLIKIN, near the printing office, advertises a large lot of approved family medicines, "prepared only by T. W. DYOTT, M. D., grandson of the late celebrated Dr. ROBERTSON, of Edinburgh."
COLBY and BONNELL retired from the firm September 12, 1814, at which time KEEN & STEWART removed to their new office on High Street. STEWART withdrew November 14, 1814, Zebulon COLBY returning, and the publishers became KEEN & COLBY. This arrangement continued until May 14, 1815, when William MURRAY, the father of the late William MURRAY, took an interest in the paper, to secure a debt, and the firm became KEEN, COLBY & MURRAY.
The publication of the Miami Intelligencer was continued by this firm until March 29, 1816, when the business relations were dissolved, and SMITH, COLBY & Co. took possession, and changed the name of the paper to Philanthropist.
The Philanthropist had for its motto "Man is man; who is more?" It was printed from the same type and press, and preserved the form and announced the same terms of subscription as its predecessor. Except in name, there was nothing in it to indicate a change. In August, Mr. SMITH sold out, and the publishing firm was changed to Zebulon COLBY & Co., August 23, 1816, and under their direction the paper was issued until April 18, 1817, when they sold out to Wesley CAMRON and James R. CAMRON. They issued the Miami Herald.
"Free, but not licentious."--Volume I, number 1, appearing under date of September 12, 1817. The publication office was in a frame building that stood near the north intersection of Reily with High Street. This building has since been removed to Second, below Basin, and is the present residence of Frank MARTINDELL.
After running two years--to October 5, 1819--a new publishing firm, consisting of James B. CAMRON and John L. MURRAY (brother of the late William MURRAY), was organized, and the name of the paper was changed to the Hamilton Gazette and Miami Register, the first number of which appeared October 12, 1819. While the paper professed to be independent in politics, and devoted to literature, it betrayed a decided tendency to Republican or Democratic politics. The enterprise of the new firm led them to enlarge the paper to five columns, on January 25, 1820, and its publication was continued by them until January 3, 1821, certainly, and in all likelihood continuously until November 11, 1821, when James B. CAMRON became sole publisher, changing the name of the paper to the Hamilton Intelligencer and Advertiser.
It commenced the publication of a new series at that date, and the office was removed to the building in which, a few years ago, Tom MYERS was assassinated. On January 10, 1825, Mr. CAMRON changed the name of his paper to the Hamilton Advertiser, with "Justice and equality" for a motto; and again, on November 17, 1826, he changed to the Hamilton Ohio Advertiser, and began a new series, which was closed October 26, 1827.
At this last date CAMERON, as he now spelled his name, began the publication of the Western Telegraph, a flaming Jackson paper, with Taylor WEBSTER as editor. The following August (1828) the publication of the Intelligencer was resumed, under the auspices of its early friends, and with the title of the Hamilton Intelligencer. It supported John Quincy ADAMS as President, and from that time on advocated Whig measures. Dr. John C. DUNLEVY was supposed to be the editor, but his name was not announced.
Mr. John WOODS, then the leading lawyer of the county, and the member of Congress, became a part owner in the Intelligencer on the 15th of November, 1828, when he bought half of the establishment from Edward SHAEFFER, to begin in March, 1829. The other half was sold to Michael B. SARGEANT, the law partner of Mr. WOODS, in February, 1829. Mr. SHAEFFER’s name appeared as publisher as late as December 22 of that year. August 17, 1830, Richard H. L. NEALE was announced as jointly interested, John WOODS continuing editor. June 21, 1831, Mr. WOODS became sole publisher. At about this time Lewis D. CAMPBELL, who had just finished his apprenticeship on the Cincinnati Gazette, came to the office of Mr. WOODS as a printer.
We have left to us in the journals of that time several articles which show the cost of carrying on newspapers. Before this period, now just half a century ago, the newspapers were carried on by printers; after this they were conducted by politicians, who felt the vital importance of having their doctrines correctly set forth.
In Mr. WOODS’s office there was then only a Ramage press, requiring two pulls to complete the impression, and inked by balls. There was no large assortment of type, and but little mercantile printing was done. Much depended upon legal and official advertising.
The Telegraph, in July, 1831, published the following as an attack on the other paper:
"We know a press which is doing business under the following prospects: It has two ostensible partners, and as it is published by A. B. & Co., the company style would seem to indicate that there were more than A.& B. They do not profess to have more than four hundred subscribers, and it is said that not three hundred and fifty papers are received by paying subscribers--this, for six months (if cash were paid within that time), would be $350; but no subscription of that number ever paid within that time $300. The actual living expenses of each of the partners can not be less than $5 per week--they ought to receive $6, to make journeymen’s ages. They employ a hand at not less than $5 per week; their paper for four hundred subscribers is $5; their office rent, ink, contingencies, etc., will be $2. These sums, which are all put at the lowest estimate, amount to $22 per week, which multiplied by twenty-six, the number of weeks in six months, will amount to $575. The advertising and jobs can not amount to $75. Allowing, therefore, four hundred subscribers, each to pay his dollar within the six months, the receipts can not exceed $475, leaving a deficit of $100. Our knowledge of business has taught that an establishment under such regulations can not be continued a year under a certain sacrifice of $200, and a very probable sacrifice of several hundred more.
The younger members of the profession will not be able to see where he has understated the income or overstated the expense. This is, however, the case. If there were two partners, one undoubtedly was a lawyer and politician, and took nothing from the fund. They would also have received a larger sum from advertisements and job printing, certainly $200 in the six months. By taking off, therefore, $130 for one of the partners, and adding $125 to the advertising and job printing, $255 is gained, making a surplus of $155, instead of a deficit of $100.
This idea that there must certainly be a loss is carried out still further in another issue of the same paper:
"PRINTING OFFICE, Dr.
"To cash paid at sundry times:
for paper, since 1st January..................... $550.00
paid journeymen...................................... 1,248.00
for twenty cords wood............................. 20.00
for type................................................... 150.00
expenses of apprentice............................ 100.00
incidental expenses.................................. _100.00
"By cash received in said time................... $500.00
outstanding claims................................... 3,500.00
Balance in favor of institution.......$1,362.00
"From the preceding it will be seen that $2,138 have been expended in the process of business during the past year, not including stockholders’ time--equal to $1,200--and that the actual receipts into the treasury have not exceeded $500. Thus the stockholders find themselves $1,638 in cash, out of pocket; and (if all be collectable) only a net gain of $162, a sum not half adequate to the injury of materials."
This was a preposterously large price to pay journeymen. No office outside of Columbus and Cincinnati, in this State, paid such a sum; and the quality of paper used would indicate a very large subscription list.
John WOODS was announced as the editor of the Intelligencer, March 31, 1829. His opening address breathes a true spirit:
"Having claimed and exercised, during the late political contest, the right of deciding for myself, and of acting upon the convictions of my own judgement, without regard to the poor popularity which is bought by the sacrifice of principle and self-respect, I now give no other pledge than that I will still pursue a fearless and independent course. I trust, however, that I shall not be unmindful that others may have an equal right to form and act upon their own opinions.
"Whatever may be my success in endeavoring to make the Intelligencer a source of general information, and of agreeable amusement to its readers, I will at least preserve it from low scurrility and degrading personal contests. When it wantonly attacks private character, and becomes the vehicle of low and malignant slander, I will no longer ask those whom I shall assail and abuse, or the public thus insulted, to support me with their patronage and countenance."
Mr. WOODS retired at the close of the presidential contest, the day of publication was changed to Saturday, and a new series was started on Saturday, November 10, 1832, and on the 17th of that month Lewis D. CAMPBELL was announced as editor. Mr. CAMPBELL did all the labor--was publisher, editor, compiler, office boy and all. He employed, for the first two years, no one to help him, except when working press, when he required some one to ink the forms as he pulled off. For this he paid "one bit" per week. We quote a paragraph from his salutory:
"It is confidently hoped that as the presidential canvass is over party spirit will soon subside, and the public mind, which has so long been kept in an unpleasant agitation, again became settled. Let the result of the contest which is now closing be what it may, our exertions will be actively employed in restoring peace and tranquility. We are ready and willing to submit to the solemn decision of a free people."
The last sentence alludes to the second election of General Jackson, in 1832. The subsidence of party spirit and the restoration of peace and tranquility in politics were Utopian schemes of the day. In 1834, L. GIBBON and D. H. GARDNER assisted him as publishers. Mr. GARDNER retired November 12, 1835, and Mr. GIBBON continued as publisher until May 12, 1836, when Isaac M. WALTERS succeeded. The name of the paper was changed, January 4, 1838, to the Hamilton Ohio Intelligencer, and in November of that year, Mr. CAMPBELL retired. He had in the mean time studied law, and was admitted to the bar. His farewell article, under the head of "Editor’s Adieu," contains the following paragraphs:
"I congratulate myself upon leaving my situation with a whole hide and a clear conscience, and upon placing myself in a position which will enable me to be an observer of what is going on in the great editorial arena, It will be fun to see the lunges that will be made; to see the Register and Statesman ‘wool’ each other; to see the veteran of the Cincinnati Gazette deal out his well-aimed blows at both friends and foes; to see Prentice floor his hosts, and to see the ‘small fry’ about the country dextrously wielding their weapons.
"I now deliberately walk out of the field, and put up the bars, entertaining a hope that those friends who have stood by and patronized me may live a thousand years, happily and prosperously; that all honest Van Buren men will soon perceive and flee from the error of their way, and that the Intelligencer may be more profitable to its publishers and more efficient to its object than it has been under my control."
Mr. WALTERS, in addition to his duties as publisher, assumed those of editor, preserving these relations until February 27, 1840, when William C. HOWELLS, now consul-general of the United States in the Dominion of Canada, purchased the paper, and became both editor and publisher. His son, William D. HOWELLS, the graceful essayist and novelist, was employed in the office a portion of the time. The first business Mr. HOWELLS undertook was to restore to the paper its old name of the Hamilton Intelligencer. He conducted the paper with marked ability until November 16, 1848, when he sold it to John P. CHARLES. A few months after, Mr. HOWELLS purchased the Dayton Transcript.
December 7, 1848, the firm of the Intelligencer became CHARLES & BOARDMAN, Mr. CHARLES being the editor.
Mr. CHARLES disposed of his interest in the paper to Mr. J. W. MCBETH, on May 17, 1849, and the style of the firm was McBETH & BOARDMAN--Mr. McBETH doing the editorial work, and Mr. BOARDMAN superintending the publishing department.
Mr. D. W. HALSEY succeeded to BOARDMAN’s interest April 24, 1854, and the firm of HALSEY & McBETH existed until February 15, 1855, when McBETH disposed of his interest to Mr. HALSEY.
The appearance of the newspaper had greatly changed at this time from that of the first issues of the Intelligencer. It was a large, handsome sheet, filled with good reading matter, and devoting a reasonable proportion of its space to local news. The enlargement took place at the beginning of 1852, and was the first since 1837. Mr. HALSEY owned the paper until 1857, when he died. The date was November 4. It was purchased from his executors by Minor MILLIKIN and David W. MCCLUNG. Mr. MILLIKIN afterward went out to the war, and was killed while bravely fighting for his country. Mr. McCLUNG is the present collector of internal revenue in Cincinnati. Among the contributors to the paper at that time was Whitelaw REID, now editor of the New York Tribune, who furnished the weekly Oxford letter. It was well done. Mr. McCLUNG retired July 29, 1858, and Mr. MILLIKIN owned and edited the paper until June 30, 1859, when he sold it to Jacob MORRIS. Mr. MORRIS associated William BUNSTON with him as joint owner, February 23, 1860, and this business relation existed until May, 1862, when WILLIAMS & EGRY, proprietors of the Hamilton Telegraph, purchased the paper, and merged it in the Telegraph.
The Western Telegraph and Hamilton Ohio Advertiser, Volume 1, Number 1, was published by James B. CAMRON and Taylor WEBSTER, November 2, 1827, under the firm of CAMRON & WEBSTER.
October 29, 1829, it was printed and published by Taylor WEBSTER, no account being given of the withdrawal of Mr. CAMRON at that time. Mr. CAMRON afterwards became county auditor, and died in 1843. He was not a practical printer.
March 11, 1831, the name was changed to Hamilton Telegraph and Buler County Advertiser. The motto then was "Justice and Equality."
March 9, 1832, the name was changed to Western Telegraph and Butler County Advertiser, and the place of publication changed. The paper was dated at Rossville, as were all its successors for nearly eight years.
October 28, 1836, the paper was suspended, Mr. WEBSTER not having leisure to attend to it. He was the member of Congress at that time.
November 7, 1839, the paper was again suspended for a brief period, for the purpose of settling up, the printing office being offered for sale. "This paper," Mr. STOKES says, "closes the twelfth volume of the Western Telegraph, and we embrace this occasion to return our thanks," etc.
November 30, 1839, the place of publication was again changed to Hamilton.
February 18, 1847, the name of the paper was changed to Butler County Telegraph.
November 18, 1847, RYAN & WITHERBY are announced as publishers, and O. B. WITHERBY and N. M. GAYLORD are announced as the editors. A. P. MILLER was the proprietor.
October 18, 1849, M. C. RYAN, who had long before been employed by Mr. CAMPBELL in his printing office, assumed the sole editorial charge of the paper, having had greatness thrust upon him, as he explains, by mentioning the departure of one of the editors to California and the absence of the other on the business of "Paradise Lost."
November 15, 1849, F. VAN DERVEER was announced as editor. He disposed of his interest to William RAMSAY, of the Dayton Empire, October 1, 1850, and went to California. C. L. WELLER was the editor in 1851, RAMSAY only holding the paper ten days.
November 11, 1852, the official records show that William R. KINDER commenced a new series at that date, styling it volume 26, number 1. Mr. KINDER continued as editor and proprietor until June 13, 1854, when his interest was purchased by Charles I. BARKER and James MCCORMICK.
On November 8, 1850, Major Alfred A. PHILLIPS purchased BARKER’s interest in the paper, and the firm name was McCORMICK & PHILLIPS. Mr. PHILLIPS remained in the business but a short while, and was bought out by Daniel R. EMPSON, April 17, 1856. Under this arrangement EMPSON became editor, and McCORMICK had charge of the publication. About one year later--April 23, 1857--the paper passed into the hands of the Telegraph Company, with William R. KINDER as editor. Mr. EMPSON died June 18 of that year.
September 3, 1857, James K. WEBSTER purchased the paper, and retained Mr. KINDER as his editor. Mr. KINDER finally retired from the editorial chair, May 6, 1858, and Mr. WEBSTER succeeded him, F. VANDERVEER acting as editor, and owned and controlled the paper until June 6, 1861, when John MCELWEE and John P. P. PECK purchased it. The former remained in the paper but a short time, selling out in a couple of weeks to his partner, who made it an outspoken champion for the cause of the Union in the war of the Rebellion, which was then inaugurated.
The greater portion of the Democracy in this county were opposed to the war. It seemed to them something which could have been avoided by a few timely concessions, and they were not slow in discharging their wrath upon Mr. PECK, as a renegade Democrat. He was at that time a private banker, and a run was begun upon his establishment, resulting in its suspension. He published the Telegraph until October 24, 1861, when the paper, press, and material were purchased by WILLIAM & EGRY, proprietors of the Hamilton Intelligencer. The two papers were merged, and were thenceforward, to the present time, published as the Hamilton Telegraph.
The Democracy were not satisfied with the withdrawal of their patronage from Mr. PECK’s bank and his paper, but set up a new journal, entitled the True Telegraph. It was printed on type bought in Oxford, and was issued by Dr. John McELWEE and Abram C. MARTS. Thus there were three papers here in progress at the same time--the Telegraph, the True Telegraph, and the Intelligencer. The editors of the latter, after the consolidation with the Telegraph, were Valentine CHASE and H. P. K. PECK, to November 27, 1862, and W. S. BUSH to March 12, 1863. At the last date, Mr. John C. LEWIS purchased the interest of Mr. WILLIAMS, and became the editor. Mr. LEWIS disposed of his interest to Mr. EGRY, November 2, 1865, who remained sole owner, with J. T. LANGSTROTH as editor, until October 31, 1867. At that time F. H. SCOBEY became a part proprietor, which interest he retained for one year. In October, 1868, Mr. EGRY again became sole owner of the paper, with F. H. SCOBEY for editor--relations that continued unbroken until Mr. EGRY sold out to C. M. CAMPBELL, on the 17th of December, 1879. The next week appeared the first number of the Daily News, an evening daily, which has been continued up to this time. Mr. SCOBEY acted as editor until March, 1880, when he withdrew, shortly afterward going to Kansas. Since this time Mr. CAMPBELL has acted as editor. Albert DIX has been the business manager since Mr. CAMPBELL took possession, and Fred L. ROSEMOND has been the city editor since Mr. SCOBEY left. The Telegraph is still continued as the weekly.
It is difficult for those not on the ground to conceive the intense excitement that prevailed here at the outbreak of the war. The outbreak of patriotic feeling at the time Sumter was fired on was enough to silence dissent, but in a month or two affairs had changed. We had lost small engagements; the war was by no means as successful as had been hoped, and business was stagnant. To those who believed that the struggle should have been averted the course of the Telegraph was extremely offensive. Its proprietors were Democrats, but the bulk of the party charged them with being traitors. The proposition, therefore, to establish a new paper devoted to sound principles was hailed with alacrity. Once begun, its course was plain. It denounced the administration and the war, it ridiculed the leaders in Congress, declared Democrats who had sprung to the assistance of the country were hypocrites or turncoats, and was never tired of harping the changes on the negro, Old Abe, Beast Butler, and the downfall of the Constitution. The leader of the peace party in this section was Clement L. VALANDIGHAM, of Dayton, a man of high standing, and of great personal magnetism. They continued this opposition during the war, and for years after, although Mr. VALLANDIGHAM did not. He saw and accepted the new situation very soon after the close of the contest.
The True Telegraph began in September, 1861, and soon forced the other Democratic paper to sell out to its Republican rival. The paper was edited, at the beginning, by Dr. McELWEE. Within a few weeks the paper was sold to MARTS & MAYO. Mr. MAYO acted as editor. He had previously been a school-teacher, and had written a life of VALLANDIGHAM. October 30, a new series of the True Telegraph was started, and styled volume 36, number 1. The paper was published by the True Telegraph Company, with Owen MORONY business manager.
Under this management, CRANE and PALMER appear as editors, March 26, 1863, and on April 23d of that year they became proprietors. On July 21, 1864, CRANE & PALMER sold the paper to the True Telegraph Company. They secured the services of John MccELWEE as editor, who served as such until February 23, 1865, when he was succeeded in the editorial chair by John A. COCKERILL. Mr. COCKERILL, at this time, was a very young man, but a writer of great force. John A. COCKERILL & Brother became the owners of the paper, October 26, 1865, and on April 25, 1867, Mr. John A. CROCKERILL became sole owner of it, and so remained until July 2, 1868, when he sold to Jacob H. LONG, who installed Colonel H. H. ROBINSON as editor. Mr. LONG continued in ownership of the paper, and Mr. ROBINSON was its editor, until January 13, 1870, when it was sold to John R. NICKEL, editor-in-chief, and L. B. DE LA COURT, managing editor, and its name changed to the Butler County Democrat, March 10, 1870; owing to legal complications, the additional name and True Telegraph was appended to it.
Dr. NICKEL retired from the paper, May 11, 1871, and its entire possession passed into the hands of L. B. DeLaCOURT, who retained Dr. NICKEL as its editor. Mr. DeLaCOURT owned the paper until December 21, 1873, when Thomas H. HODDER purchased it, and held it until April 15, 1875. During this time, Mr. HODDER changed the form of the paper from a folio to a quarto, and made some other mechanical improvements in it.
The firm of R. N. ANDREWS & Co. succeeded Mr. HODDER in the ownership of the paper, April 15, 1875. Mr. J. W. SHART’s name appeared in the initial number as its editor, and until June 24, when it was dropped. Later in the year it was edited by J. P. CALDWELL for a brief season and by Thomas H. MILLER and others.
On May 13, 1875, the paper assumed the name of the Butler County Democrat and Hamilton Guidon, McELWEE & McMAKEN selling the Guidon to the Democrat. On December 2, 1875, the paper was purchased by the Democratic Printing Company, composed of R. N. ANDREWS, Thomas MILLER, and H. C. HUME----Mr. HUME acting as editor. Subsequently ANDREWS disposed of his interest to George R. VINNEDGE, and afterward Mr. D. J. CALLEN, of Mercer County, purchased the interest, first of MILLER, then of VINNEDGE, and then came into entire possession of the paper, by purchasing the interest of Mr. HUME. CALLEN became financially embarrassed, and the Democrat was placed in the hands of a receiver. The receiver, N. E. WARWICK, under the order of the Court of Common Pleas of Butler County, edited and continued the publication of the paper until February, 1877, when it was sold by him to H. C. HUME, Mrs. Catharine MILLER, and George VINNEDGE, who soon afterward sold the establishment to B. K. BRANT, its present proprietor, who is assisted by Isaac COY. It is Democratic in politics. A daily paper was issued from this office in the Fall of 1881.
In April, 1821, a paper was commenced by John L. MURRAY, called the Volunteer, and afterwards Murray’s Weekly Volunteer, which was continued December, 1825, when it was discontinued.
The next earliest periodical of which we have any account was published at Oxford. It was edited by the professors, and printed by John B. SMITH. Its title was the Literary Register, and it had for motto "Prodesse quam conspici." It was in magazine form, two columns to the page, and devoted a trifle of its space to local matters. It appears to have continued only about two years, for we find in the Hamilton papers an advertisement of the material for sale:
"The Erodelphian and Union Literary Societies of Miami University will dispose of a good printing press, together with a large quantity of type, to suit the purchaser, if application be made immediately.
"For particulars apply to
"Isaac SHEPPERD, )
Samuel W. McCRACKEN, ) Committee
William M. MCLAIN, )
James H. BACON )
"Miami University, Oxford, December 4, 1830."
The Rev. Dr. MACDILL, a name ever to be honored in this country, began the publication of a religious periodical in Hamilton, in the year 1829. It began in January. It was entitled the Christian Intelligencer, and was published in pamphlet form, forty-eight pages to each monthly number. It was devoted to the defense of the doctrines of the Associate Reformed Church and the diffusion of religious intelligence generally. After editing the paper for three years, 1829, 1830, and 1838 [sic], it was then suspended, but resumed again in March, 1833. At this time the fourth volume commenced. At the close of the thirteenth volume the name was changed, and it was then called the Evangelical Guardian. In 1847 it was called the United Presbyterian. At this time the Rev. James PRESSLEY, then of Cincinnati, was associated with Dr. MacDILL as publisher and assistant editor. At the close of the eighteenth volume, Dr. MacDILL concluded to remove West, and the Rev. James CLAYBAUGH, D. D., succeeded him, although the former still contributed articles from his home in Illinois. The journal is still carried on in Pittsburg.
In July, 1830, James B. CAMERON commenced a weekly paper in Rossville, called the Ohio Independent Press, which was afterward published by CAMERON, HUTCHINS & Co., until February, 1832, at which time the publication was discontinued, the publication not having been regular during the latter part of the time.
The Free Soil Banner was issued in Hamilton, August 21, 1848, giving an active support to VAN BUREN. It was edited by the following committee: John W. ERWIN, John W. WILSON, Henry S. EARHART, Mark C. MCMAKEN, Alfred THOMAS and John R. LEWIS. John H. ELLIOTT, Hamilton, and H. C. BIRD, Rossville, were publishing agents. John C. SKINNER, treasurer. It was issued weekly, for three months.
The Daily Press was issued in Rossville, in May, 1851, by James H. GREEN and Alfred L. SEWELL, two practical printers. Four numbers only were published.
The Miami Democrat was begun in Rossville, in January, 1850, and was conducted by Wilson H. LAYMON. He retired from the paper, Tuesday, September 9, 1851, and the next number was owned by an association of Democrats--LONGFELLOW & Co.; L. J. STRONG, editor.