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Taylor, Jacob N; Crooks, M. O. Sketch Book of St. Louis: Containing a Series of Sketches of the Early Settlement, Public Buildings, Hotels, Railroads, Steamboats, Foundry and Machine Shops, Mercantile Houses, Grocers, Manufacturing Houses, Etc . St. Louis: George Knapp and Co, 1858. [format: book], [genre: guidebook; narrative]. Permission: Tulane University
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Chapter VIII. Daily Missouri Republican.

GEORGE KNAPP & Co., Proprietors,

On the morning of the 12th of July, 1808, there appeared in the village of St. Louis, in the Territory of Louisiana, a paper destined, as the sequel proves, to exert a greater influence upon the politics of the country than any similar publication west of the Alleghanies. It made its appearance bearing the title of "Louisiana Gazette — published by Joseph Charless, printer to the Territory and of the laws of the United States." Had we space we would be glad to follow the course of this sheet from the time it first appeared, making its weekly visits to its friends to the present day, when it has reached collossal proportions, and makes its appearance a welcome visitor in all parts of the city and land, bearing the news of all climes and countries.

In March, 1820, Mr. Cummings, now a resident of Pittsburgh, bought out the paper. He remained in possession for two years; at the end of this period the paper became the property of Mr. Edward Charless, a son of the former proprietor. It then became, as it is to this day, the Missouri Republican, its size being twenty-six by twenty inches.

On the 25th of March, 1828, Mr. Nathaniel Paschall (one of the present proprietors and editor in chief) became a co-proprietor, its size being at that time thirty-one by twenty-two inches.

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Upon the 9th day of April, 1833, the paper made its first semi-weekly appearance — the weekly was still continued for the benefit of the country subscribers. The semi-weekly flourished and grew apace, and upon the 30th of April, 1835, it was discontinued and a tri-weekly issued instead. Success also attended this step, and in the issue of August 18th, 1836, we find the following notice:

"DAILY — As soon as the requisite arrangements can be made, the Republican will be issued daily." A month had passed away before the promise was carried into effect.

On the 3d of July, 1837, Messrs. Charless & Paschall retired from the Republican, making a graceful bow to the public who had so long sustained them, and introducing as their successors Messrs. Chambers, Harris & Knapp.

Col. Chambers is still remembered too well and affectionately to need that his praise should be spoken here. No man has been more intimately connected with the history of the city, and none whose loss was felt more severely.

George Knapp had become connected with the Republican in 1827, when he commenced his career as an apprentice in the office. Since that time he has continued, without intermission, his connection with the paper. His rise is chronicled by its course since the day he entered the office, and the position in the management of the affairs of the paper is too well known to need particular comment.

In 1839 Mr. Harris retired from the concern and the business was conducted by Messrs. Chambers & Knapp. Mr. Joseph W. Dougherty became one of the firm about this time, and so continued for about eighteen months. Soon after Mr. D. had retired, Mr. Paschall, who had been connected in the meantime with the "New Era," returned to this office as assistant editor.

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May 17th, 1849, the great fire occurred and completely destroyed the Republican office; also the Organ, New Era and Reveille. After the fire the paper was printed upon a smaller sheet until new material was received, when it again made its appearance in its old size. In January, 1854, the sheet was again enlarged to its present proportions — thirty-three by fifty-six inches. In May of 1854 Mr. Chambers was laid upon the bed of sickness, from which he never rose again to enjoy the blessings of this life. On the 22d of the month he departed to that "undiscovered country" amid the tears of the whole community.

To Mr. Chambers succeeded in his interest his widow, who with George Knapp, the surviving partner, continued the paper under the style of George Knapp & Co. On the 19th of May following, she sold her interest to Mr. George Knapp, who assumed all the liabilities of the office under the title of "George Knapp." The next and last change was effected as is explained in the following announcement, which appeared Tuesday, August 7th, 1855:

Missouri Republican. — I have admitted Mr. Nathaniel Paschall and my brother, Mr. John Knapp, as partners in the publication of the Missouri Republican, and hereafter the business will be conducted under the style of George Knapp & Co.

Since which time its course has been onward, the best expression of which can be given by the republication of a short article in this paper of March 16th, last:

"The year 1856 was in every way the most prosperous year this paper has ever known. Our subscriptions never increased so rapidly, our advertisements never crowded in so upon us, and the footings up of the year show a larger net gain in subscribers and profits than any previous year.

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"Our readers will bear us witness that we very seldom trouble them with our business affairs, and never unless provoked to it by some such meddlesome and unfriendly writer as the one just quoted. We are content to let the Republican go forth to its readers just as it is, bearing such evidence of prosperity as a judicious reader may infer from an inspection of its pages. We are willing that others shall judge of the amount of labor bestowed upon it, and the expense attending its publication, as well as its income. It is sufficient for us to know that, while incurring a very heavy expense in the issue of the paper, it has compensated us in past years, and we expect it to do so for many years to come. We have alluded in brief terms to the position in which the close of the year found the Republican. We have since advanced two months and a half in our course, and we have met with a still larger share of the confidence of the public. Since the first of January we have increased our daily circulation over seven hundred, and the tri-weekly and weekly issues have kept pace with this increase. Our advertising patronage — the life-blood of a newspaper — has also extended itself until we find great difficulty in controlling it. We risk nothing in saying that this branch of our patronage has doubled itself since the close of 1854, and this is strengthened by a statement which our book-keeper has furnished us of the new advertisements which were published during the fourteen days ending the middle of the past week. The total number of new advertisements within that period was 2,071, and the average sum paid for them was $310 per day, or $4,345 for the fourteen days. In this calculation we have not taken into account the numerous advertisements of those who have yearly accounts with us. They are such as are inserted for a limited period, and charged accordingly."

The editorial columns of the Republican are under the charge

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of Mr. Paschall, who is assisted by a large number of talented writers, who continue to furnish their readers with every thing that is worthy of being noted. The subscription of the Republican is, Daily, $10; Tri-Weekly, $5; Weekly, $2.

McKEE & FISHBECK, Proprietors.

This paper was established on the 9th of July, 1852, as a conservative Democratic journal, by Messrs. Hill & McKee. These gentlemen conducted the Democrat in a spirited manner and soon won a host of friends. In March, 1853, they purchased the St. Louis Union, then the property of Capt. Richard I. Phillips. This purchase removed the only opposition Democratic paper in the city, and gave the Democrat a fair field, which it was not slow to take advantage of. In 1854 Mr. Hill retired from the concern, and his interest afterwards passed into the hands of Mr. George W. Fishbeck, the present associate of Mr. Wm. McKee.

Ever since its first publication the Democrat has been rapidly extending its circulation and increasing its advertising patronage, and at this day there is not a newspaper in the State of Missouri paying a better per cent, upon the money invested.

It has for the past three years been under the editorial management of B. Gratz Brown, Esq., a gentleman of fine talents, and a brilliant and forcible speaker and writer. His course upon the free labor and Kansas questions has made his name, and that of the Democrat, familiar throughout the country.

In every other department, as well as the editorial, the Democrat is ably conducted. Its commercial reports, which are prepared by Mr. Fishbeck, are not excelled by those of any other journal in St. Louis for accuracy or fullness. Mr. Fishbeck

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is admirably adapted by nature for this post, and his long service has rendered him perfectly au fait in every thing that appertains to this department. The marine news is prepared by Mr. Ryland, a gentleman of marked ability, while the local column, under the charge of Mr. Davis, is a complete daily history of the events of the city, written in a pleasant style.

Connected with this paper is one of the best arranged and most extensive Job Offices in the west, which enjoys a large share of public patronage.

The subscription to the Daily Democrat is $8 per annum, Tri-weekly $5, Weekly $1. The proprietors have offered three farms as prizes to those persons sending them the largest list of subscribers. This, we believe, was also done last year.

CHARLES L. HUNT, Proprietor.

This is a daily, tri-weekly and weekly Democratic journal, published at No. 48 Third street, corner of Pine street, St. Louis.

The present paper is not the first which has borne the name in this city. Early in 1855, a number of influential Catholic citizens determined on the establishment of a weekly paper, and made proposals to Dr. J. V. Huntington, then the editor of the Baltimore Metropolitan Magazine, who was visiting St. Louis by invitation of the Catholic Institute, as a lecturer. Arrangements being satisfactorily effected, subscriptions were raised, and these, as collected, were, in pursuance of a resolution adopted by a meeting of the subscribers, paid over to Dr. Huntington, who was recognized as both proprietor and editor of the Weekly Leader, The first number was dated March 10th, 1855.

This paper appeared regularly and without modification in

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plan until the summer of 1856, when the proprietor thought fit to take, as a journalist, an active part on the Democratic side in the political campaign of that year, and accordingly established, on the 1st of July, the Daily Evening Leader, a journal, as stated in its prospectus, independent, though far from neutral, in politics, and retaining the Catholic character of the weekly from which it had been developed. The weekly was also continued in its original form.

The Evening Leader, during its brief existence, attained a large measure of success, and was speedily acknowledged as a valuable auxiliary to the forces of the Buchanan party. The Evening Pilot was, at that period, the recognized Democratic organ in this city. Early in the fall Mr. Charles L. Hunt entered into negotiation with the proprietors of the Leader and Pilot, resulting in the purchase of the latter, and the merging of both journals into a new daily morning paper which retained the name of the Leader, Messrs. Huntington and Hunt becoming its joint proprietors.

The first number of the new journal was issued on the 13th of October, 1856. It was avowedly disconnected from all religious affinities, and regularly succeeded to the organship of the National Democratic party. The editorial chairs were filled by Dr. Huntington and Wm. Seay, Esq. The Sunday Leader, a literary edition of the paper, was placed, in the spring of 1857, and still remains, under the editorial charge of Donald MacLeod, Esq., a well known author and poet.

In the fall of the same year Mr. Hunt, having purchased the interest of his partner, became sole proprietor, and in February, 1858, placed the Leader under the general charge of Edward W. Johnson, Esq., Mr. Seay retaining his post as political editor. Mr. Johnson has been before the public for many years

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as editorially connected with the National Intelligencer, the Richmond Whig, the New Orleans Crescent, &c.

At this period the form of the quarto was abandoned for that of the folio, and in its new shape acquired a large additional patronage. There are four editions of the Leader, the Daily, Sunday, Tri-weekly and Weekly. Its circulation is large and increasing, and as the Democratic organ of the State has won a wide and high reputation.

JAMES L. FAUCETT, Editor and Proprietor.

This paper was originated by Messrs. Russell S. Higgins, the well known and popular editor of the St. Louis Organ, and Philip G. Ferguson, and made its first appearance on the morning of the 20th of December, 1852. It was at that time published at five cents per week — was 16 1/2 by 23 inches, and was spiritedly conducted. On July 4th, 1854, the paper was enlarged to twenty by twenty-seven inches, and the price of subscription advanced to ten cents per week. The editorial corps embraced considerable talent at that time, numbering among its regular contributors Mr. Allen, the popular financial editor of the St. Louis Republican; Thomas Gales Forster, the present editor of the Boston Banner of Light, a spiritualist; and others. On the 18th of November, 1853, Mr. James L. Faucett became connected with the management of the Herald. This was an important epoch jn the Herald's history. Mr. F. was a young man of indomitable industry and perseverance, possessing a large acquaintance with the citizens of St. Louis. On the 4th of August Mr. F. purchased the interest of Mr. Higgins, and the Herald wag issued by Ferguson & Faucett. Upon this change being made in the proprietorship, the Herald was again enlarged

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and was presented to its readers on a 21 1/2 by 30 inch sheet. The fourth volume was published by the same firm and of the same size, but was marked by an increased vigor in the editorial management; being treated to a new dress, it presented a very neat appearance. Through the energetic exertions of Mr. Faucett, the Sunday Herald was commenced, and which is now such a favorite with our reading public. The difficulties which surrounded Mr. Faucett in this undertaking were almost insurmountable; besides the usual difficulties attendant upon such an enterprise, he had to contend against the opposition of Mr. Ferguson, who predicted a failure. Mr. Faucettt knew no such word as "fail," and he now has the satisfaction of seeing his efforts crowned with success.

The fifth volume of the Herald was commenced on the 24th of April, 1855, and was inaugurated by another enlargement. The sixth volume made its appearance in a new dress and was now the neatest paper printed in the city. The seventh volume observed another enlargement, the size being 22 by 32 inches. The eighth volume was also enlarged on the 31st of March, 1857, to 24 by 36 inches.

On the 3d of July, 1857, Mr. Faucett purchased the interest of Mr. Ferguson and took the entire charge of the editorial columns, assisted by an able corps of assistants. Under the guidance of Mr. F. the Herald has been an ardent advocate of the working class, and has always denounced in unmeasured terms the attempts of those in power to abuse their privileges. The Sunday Herald is furnished at two dollars per annum; the Daily Herald at ten cents per week, and deserves the success it receives. May it prosper and grow fat.

We are informed that an enlargement would have been made by Mr. Faueett last fall, had it not been for the monetary crisis affecting his advertisers; but we are assured that it will soon

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be carried into consummation. The Herald is now printed at No. 24 Market street, between Main and Second streets, and has a fine Job Office attached, under the charge of Mr. E. H. A. Habicht, one of the most skillful job printers in the west.

ANDERSON & GONTER, Editors and Proprietors.

The St. Louis Price Currsnt was established by Mr. Josiah Anderson, in the fall of 1848, in connection with the "People's Daily Organ;" during which year, and up to 1850, it was issued semi-weekly in "letter sheet" form. In 1849 a semi-weekly newspaper edition was commenced in connection with the letter sheet, but in 1852 both editions became weeklies, and were thus continued by Mr. Anderson to February 1st, 1856, when Charles G. Gonter became one of the proprietors; since which time a Daily Price Current, a letter sheet and a newspaper form, weekly, have regularly been issued from that establishment; and, we are glad to state, are well and liberally supported by the mercantile community. The array of advertisements in the columns of the Price Current is a guaranty of its appreciation by those desirous of extending their business through such a valuable and authentic medium. We are told that the Price Current is sent to almost every State in the Union, as well as to London, Liverpool and other important foreign cities. The letter sheet Price Current has attained a circulation of nearly 4,000 copies.

The Price Current establishment is the only office west of the Mississippi river where Gordon's patent "Fire-Fly" Card Press is to be found — Mr. Gonter having purchased the right. It feeds itself, prints, cuts and counts the cards, from a continuous

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roll of card board, at the rate of 8,000 and 10,000 per hour. Office, over No. 8, Olive street.


Besides the papers already mentioned there are 16 weekly papers and 12 magazines and periodicals. There are job offices in profusion, furnishing employment for about 850 printers. The affairs of the craft are governed by a Union, and regular monthly meetings are held for the purpose of legislating upon all questions affecting their interests. This association numbers among its members many gentlemen of fine ability, who would reflect honor upon any position in life which they might be called upon to sustain. Mr. H. P. Callou is the present presiding officer.

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Taylor, Jacob N; Crooks, M. O. Sketch Book of St. Louis: Containing a Series of Sketches of the Early Settlement, Public Buildings, Hotels, Railroads, Steamboats, Foundry and Machine Shops, Mercantile Houses, Grocers, Manufacturing Houses, Etc . St. Louis: George Knapp and Co, 1858. [format: book], [genre: guidebook; narrative]. Permission: Tulane University
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