The Leonardville Monitor

 First newspaper published in Leonardville on April 3, 1884

In December 1883 Preston S. Loofbourrow started a newspaper in Clay Center called The Monitor. (See the article below about why the newspaper was called the "Monitor.")  He published there until March 1884 when he shipped his newspaper and equipment to Leonardville, 15 miles to the east on the Kansas Central Railroad, the "narrow gauge railroad". His equipment arrived there on March 20. He set up his new shop and on Thursday, April 3, 1884, he published the first issue of The Leonardville Monitor.

In the first issue, the new editor called for property owners to plant trees "to add more to the beauty, comfort and health of the town"; build a brick yard and kiln; construct brick buildings and sidewalks; establish a flour mill and elevator; and urged the city to employ a herder to tend cattle running at large during the day and corralling them at night.

The motto for his paper was "Be Sure You're Right, Then - Pitch In." He supported good morals, religious influences and temperance; he was a Civil War veteran, had been a homesteader, was a staunch Republican and was greatly opinionated; his stories and editorials were often verbose and ornate and he didn't mind stepping on toes.

He promised the readers that the Monitor "will be issued each week from this date forward until long after the "narrow gauge" shall have become a broad gauge, and the booming little city of Leonardville shall have grown to metropolitan proportions. We have arrived and have come to stay."

Loofbourrow published The Leonardville Monitor for ten years, saying good-bye in the March 15, 1894 issue.  (Read more about him, see the section: Noteworthy Leonardvillains, and click on: Preston S. Loofbourrow.)

The Leonardville Monitor was published from April 1884 until March 1953 when it combined with The Riley Regent to became the Monitor-Regent. Then in June 1957 it combined with The Blue Valley News, formerly The Randolph Enterprise, to became The Riley Countian and is currently publishing in its 126th year. That's over 6500 issues!

There have been 27 editors in the past. Ten (10) of them lasted a year or less, seven (7) stayed two years, two (2) lasted three years, one (1) stayed four years, three (3) made it to seven years, one (1) lasted eight years, Preston Loofbourrow stayed 10 years, one (1) stayed 23 years, and the longest, Isaac Moon, published the Monitor for 28 years, from 1923 to 1951.


Why was the Leonardville newspaper called the "Monitor"?

(Taken from The Leonardville Monitor, Thursday, April 1, 1886)
Preston S. Loofbourrow, editor
Our New Sign

The new sign of the Monitor printing office is one of the neatest things out and attracts the attention of every body. The little gun-boat that got away with the Merrimac is represented reposing serenely on the bosom of the great deep, ready at any moment to belch forth the iron hail that will send any and all of the enemies of truth and right principles who my assail it, to the bottom of the sea.

The Monitor, like its historic namesake, though unpretentious and unassuming, will always be found on the side of right, no matter who may oppose, and when its guns are once turned upon an object, its destruction is swift and certain. Let the enemies of morality, good order, temperance and social harmony, look upon the image of the little gun-boat and take warning.



Preston S. Loofbourrow


Articles from The Leonardville Monitor

We will gleam articles from the pages of the old Leonardville Monitor
and publish them here.
( Bear with us as this is a slow and arduous process. )

Below are the current stories and events that have been taken from the Monitor.
The links to the articles follow the title and description of the event.


Leonardville's Great Fire of 1893

Preston S. Loofbourrow, editor

This is a set of two articles about "Leonardville's Great Fire" in June 1893.
The first article is an account of the fire as it was taking place and the second is a
summary of losses and future plans.

Leonardville's Great Fire (1)    //     June 1893

Leonardville's Great Fire (2)    //     June 1893 (follow up article)


Leonardville's Korn Karnival of 1896

M.S. Amos, Editor

This is a series of three articles about the "Leonardville Korn Karnival" held in September 1896. The first article is the account of the two "mass meetings" held to plan the "Karnival", the second article contains the program of events and the account of the two-day event, and the third is a follow-up summary of the event and letter of thanks from the planning committee.

Leonardville Plans for a Korn Karnival     //     July 1896

 Leonardville Korn Karnival     //     September 1896

Leonardville Korn Karnival Kernels     //     September 1896


Shooting of the Riley County Sheriff - 1897

M.S. Amos, Editor

This is a set of two articles. The first is the account of the "Shooting of Riley County's Sheriff Seldon B. Lard" on the main street of Leonardville on October 20, 1897. The second is a two-part article that tells about the trial of the accused, Isaac Warren, in March of 1898.

  Sheriff Lard Killed     //     October 1897

Trial of Ike Warren     //     March 1898


Dedication of the Leonardville Methodist Episcopal Church

This a one article about the dedication of the new Leonardville Methoidist Episcopal Church in Decebmer of 1890. Not only does it tell about the service, it also has a list of how much money individual people donated to this building project.

 Leonardville M.E. Church Dedication     //     December 1890