THE VIRGINIA GAZETTE is the local newspaper of Williamsburg, Virginia
. Established in 1930, it is named for the historical
published between 1736 and 1780. It is published twice a week in the
* 1 Historical papers
* 2 Modern paper
* 3 See also
* 4 Notes
* 5 References
* 6 External links
Virginia Gazette, November 4, 1763
There were actually three papers published in Williamsburg under the
Virginia Gazette between 1736 and 1780. Together, these
papers serve as an important record for
Virginia 's colonial history.
Virginia Gazette, the first newspaper ever published in
Virginia, was established by William Parks , who printed the first
four-page edition on August 6, 1736. Its motto was "Containing the
freshest Advices, Foreign and Domestick." Three years earlier, Parks
had founded The
Maryland Gazette in
Annapolis, Maryland . In 1743,
Parks built a paper mill in Williamsburg; he purchased the raw
material to create newsprint from
Benjamin Franklin . The paper was
published, successively, by William Parks (1736–1750) , William
Hunter (1751–1761) , Joseph Royle (1761–1765) , Alexander Purdie
and John Dixon (1766-1775), Dixon and Hunter (1775-1778), and Dixon
and Thomas Nicolson (1779–1780). The last issue was published on
April 8, 1780, after which point the paper relocated to Richmond ,
Virginia's new capital.
In 1766 William Rind founded a competing newspaper also called the
Virginia Gazette. This paper was published by Rind (1766–1773),
then by his widow
Clementina Rind (1773–1774), and finally John
Pinkney (1774–1776). Its last issue was printed on February 3, 1776.
On February 3, 1775, Alexander Purdie, previously a publisher of the
original Gazette, started a third paper of the same name. It was
published by Purdie until his death in 1779; it was then published by
John Clarkson and Augustine Davis until December 9, 1780. Afterward,
various papers were published periodically around
Virginia using the
Virginia Gazette banner.
In 1893 W. C. Johnston brought the name
Virginia Gazette back to
Williamsburg in newspaper form, but unrelated to its colonial
predecessors. An Ohio native and an alumnus of the College of William
and Mary, Johnston served as clerk of the Williamsburg city council,
member of the board of registrars and the Williamsburg Business
Association, and postmaster. As editor of the
Virginia Gazette, a
Democratic weekly, Johnston campaigned vigorously to attract industry
to the region. The Gazette, for example, described a new mill that
opened in 1895 as “the morning star of the future that heralds a
glorious dawn of prosperity upon this little city.” Typical content
included local and national news, general interest stories,
advertisements, business directories, college notes, and social
L. S. Cottrell, Johnston’s original printer, became owner and
publisher in 1894 but sold the paper back to Johnston in March 1896.
Circulation by 1900 was approximately 500, and there was no competing
paper published in town during the paper’s life.
Robert P. Scott became owner and publisher of the Gazette in 1917,
with Johnston still serving as editor. Local news still predominated,
but national issues were becoming increasingly important. In 1920,
Johnston editorialized against women’s suffrage as a violation of
states’ rights: “No one questions the ability of women. . . . No
one questions that they are as capable as men to cast their ballots.
But thousands question the manner in which women are to be
enfranchised and honestly believe that the surrender to the general
government of the powers of the state is too big a price to pay for a
privilege which is chimerical and visionary in the extreme.”
By 1922, the paper ceased publication. Another
appeared in 1925, associated with the William Parks School of
Journalism at the College of William and Mary, but it lasted only
through 1927. Havilock Babcock, of the journalism faculty was editor
and students served as reporters and handled all the other newspaper
jobs, except printing.
W. A. R. Goodwin , pastor of the local Bruton Parish Church
and a co-founder of
Colonial Williamsburg , made a push for a paper to
return to Williamsburg under the banner of The
Virginia Gazette. At
Goodwin's urging publisher J. A. Osborne moved to town from Florida
and established the modern paper. In 1961 the Osborne family sold the
paper to John O. W. Gravely III. Gravely died in 1975 and his widow
Martha became president and publisher. The Gravely family sold the
paper in 1986 to the Chesapeake Publishing Corp. of Easton, MD., a
subsidiary of Whitney Communications. Later in 2001 Chesapeake sold
the paper to the Daily Press , a Tribune Co. daily in Newport News,
Through the years, the paper won
Virginia Press Association's award
for community excellent in publishing three times, in 1969, 1980 and
1994. Long a weekly newspaper, the Gazette expanded to twice-weekly in
1984. The current publisher is W. C. "Bill" O'Donovan who has served
in that capacity since 1986. beginning as an editor under Gravely.
William Hunter (publisher)
William Hunter (publisher)
William Parks (publisher)
Joseph Royle (publisher)
* ^ A B C "
Virginia Gazette By Date". Research.history.org.
2009-11-05. Retrieved 2014-05-13.
* ^ A B Archived August 31, 2009, at the
Wayback Machine .
* ^ "Dictionary of United States History: 1492-1895. Four Centuries
of History - John Franklin Jameson - Google Books". Books.google.com.
* History of the
* Library of Virginia
* University of Mary Washington,
Virginia Gazette webpage
* Library of Congress