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Journals and Journalists

    It may be stated without fear of successful contradiction that no City in the United States of the size of Jacksonville can quite equal this City in the excellence of its daily journals.  They give all the news, both local and telegraphic, and in this respect they cover the news fields as thoroughly as the metropolitan "blanket sheets," with the advantage of greater abridgement [sic], which is more satisfactory to the busy man.  Jacksonville has five daily, ten weekly, and six monthly papers, of which the oldest and most widely known is the


    When, in February, 1883, Mr. Charles H. Jones, now proprietor of the St. Louis Post, consolidated the Times and the Union, the two leading dailies of Jacksonville, he laid the foundation for one of the greatest journals in the South, which the Times-Union has since become.  Five years later Mr. Jones sold his paper to the Florida Publishing Company, at that time owner and publisher of the News-Herald.  This company was composed of leading citizens of Jacksonville, of whom Mr. T. T. Stockton as the central figure.  On purchasing the Times-Union, the publication of the News-Herald was abandoned.  The company, backed by ample capital, immediately began such improvements in the paper as were necessary to bring it up to the standard of other first-class journals and make it the leading daily of the State.  Their efforts were seconded by the public in such a manner and their service improved to such an extent that in a few years the Times-Union came to be one of the best known and widely circulated papers in the South.  It is an eight-page, six column paper, issued every day in the year, with a Sunday edition of twelve pages.  The Times-Union has the exclusive Southern Associated Press, United Press, New York Associated Press, New England Associated Press, and splendid cable service from all parts of the world.  During the yellow fever period of 1888, the management, with commendable enterprise and magnificent courage, issued their paper every day, giving to an anxious world the daily record of events in a stricken city and the details of life and death among a suffering and imprisoned people.  During this period the Times-Union gained a reputation world-wide, and its readers were increased by thousands.  In keeping with its line of policy to keep abreast the times in all improvements affecting modern journalism, the Times-Union has recently added to its splendid equipment the type-setting machines which have so revolutionized printing.  Six of these machines are now in use by the paper, and in this respect it is the equal of any metropolitan journal.  Telegraphic wires run direct to the office, making connection with every country on earth, and every facility is afforded for giving the news of the world each day.

    The Evening Times-Union is issued under the same management as the Times-Union.  It is a four-page paper put up in convenient form, and containing all the telegraphic as well as the local news. 

    In the selection of his staff Mr. Stockton has displayed his usual keen business judgment, and has surrounded himself with a corps of assistants able and reliable.  Mr. A. S. Hough, the chief editorial writer, is a Georgian, a graduate of the best Colleges of that State, and at one time a professor in the University at Oxford.  He is a scholar and statistician of exceptional attainments, and a fluent and able writer.  Mr. Hamilton Jay, the Florida Poet, is editor of the Evening Times-Union, and a man of conspicuous ability.  His poems have become celebrated, and are copied all over the United States, where they are eagerly read by his admirers.  Mr. H. G. Myrover, also on the editorial staff, has had thorough training in journalism, and his natural ability, coupled with his extensive travels abroad and at home, have eminently qualified him for the elevated position he occupies.  The City department is in charge of Mr. W. T. Bauskett, who, assisted by a corps of able reporters, serves up the City news in a most readable shape, that covers the local field thoroughly.  The Times-Union also publishes a weekly edition.


    The Florida Citizen is the youngest daily in Jacksonville, but it was born a giant.  It was established in December, 1893, by Mr. Lorettus S. Metcalf, the veteran New York journalist.  It is an eight-page, six-column daily, with a four-page Sunday supplement.  It has a thorough telegraphic and cable news service, covering the entire world.  Mr. Metcalf is one of the most widely known journalists in America.  For nine years he was business manager of the North American Review, for five years of which he was also its editor.  He founded the Forum, and edited and managed that spendid [sic] publication for five years, until his voluntary retirement in 1891.  Under his excellent management the Citizen became a leading journal from its first issue, and has shown a rapid growth ever since, in both business and influence.  The managing editor of the Citizen is Mr. Henry George, Jr., a son of the celebrated Henry George, of New York.  His wide experience in his chosen profession, and his natural and acquired ability make of him a thorough and finished journalist.  He is assisted in the editorial department by Mr. E. E. Roberts, an able and attractive writer.  The City editor is Mr. A. N. Adams, who worked his way up from the ranks.  He is a shrewd newsgatherer and a clever writer, and covers the local field with admirable ability, in which he is ably assisted by a full corps of reporters. The Citizen also has a weekly edition.


    The Metropolis has been one of the most conspicuous successes among Southern afternoon papers.  It is a tea-table visitor to nearly every home in Jacksonville, and makes a special feature of local news, society events, rail and river items, etc.  The Metropolis was founded in 1887, by W. R. Carter and R. A. Russell, both of whom had served their time in newspaper work.  The Metropolis was the first afternoon paper to start the ten cents per week subscription rates, and coming, as it did, after the suspension of the Herald, it appeared at an auspicious moment, and was a success from the very start.  It is ably conducted and well patronized, both in the subscription and advertising departments.  Mr. W. R. Carter is editor; Mr. Rufus A. Russell business manager; and Mr. William Wallace Douglass City editor.  They constitute an able corps of newspaper men, thoroughly representative of Jacksonville and her varied interests.

    Of the weekly papers, the Journal of Commerce is one of the leaders.  It is a twenty-four-page illustrated trade paper, established in 1892, and has been very successful.  Mr. J. W. White, editor and proprietor, is a wide-awake and energetic man of business.  The Chicago National Printer Journalist, of July, 1894, says of him:  "J. W. White, editor and proprietor of the Jacksonville (Fla.) Journal of Commerce, can claim the honor of publishing one of the best commercial papers in the Union.  Mr. White is active, thorough, and capable, and has made his pubication a big success from the start.  His paper has a large circulation among the business men of Florida, who hold it in the highest esteem.  He has traveled all over the United States, British America, and the West Indies, advertising Florida, and has published a large number of books, showing the advantages which Florida offers to the home-seeker."  Mr. White as one of the founders of the National Good Roads Association of the United States, and he is one of the vice-presidets of the Association at the present time.  He is also a general organizer of the American Federation of Labor, and a member of the National Editorial Association.  In Odd Fellowship, Knights of Pythias, and other organizations, he has taken an active part.  He is a member of the Jacksonville Board of Trade, and much interested in all matters pertaining to the growth and development of the City and State. 

    Other publications are the Grove and Garden, monthly, and the Southern Tourist, weekly, by Frank & Wagstaff; Echoes of the South, an illustrated literary and intellectual journal, by the Misses Essie and Bessie Williams; the Free Lance, a temperance organ, by K. D. Chandler; the Advocate of Common Sense, by August Buesing; several papers by colored people and sundry other periodicals.

    There are several professional journalists and special correspondents in Jacksonville, not especially identified with the local press, but who stand high in their profession.  Of these Mr. Solon A. Adams was for many years editor of a number of country journals, and was for quite a while City editor of the Florida Citizen.  He is special correspondent for a number of outside dailies, besides doing special newspaper work in other fields.  Mr. Adams is the proud father of that wonderful boy, George N. Adams, who has been winning all the Southern bicycle championships.


        Mr. Frank W. Hawthorne is one of the best known of Southern newspaper men.  He is from Maine, a graduate of Bowdoin College, a learned scholar and an able writer.  He came to Florida in 1885, and early in the next year, in company with the late John P. Varnum, established the Jacksonville Morning News, of which he became business manager.  In May, 1887, the Morning News was consolidated with the Daily Herald, and Mr. Hawthorne became associate editor of the News-Herald.  One year later this Company purchased the Times-Union, and Mr. Hawthorne accepted a similar position on it.  During the terrible scourge of 1888, it was Mr. Hawthorne, who, with splendid heroism, nailed the Times-Union colors to the mast, and held them there throughout that entire trying period.  He retired from the Times-Union in 1894, and since then has devoted his time to special magazine and newspaper work. 

Brown, S. Paul
The book of Jacksonville:  a history
Poughkeepsie, N.Y.:  A.V. Haight, printer and bookbinder, 1895, pp. 127-130