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Edwards, Richard; Hopewell, M.; Ashley, William; Barry, James G.; Belt and Priest; Casey, John; Hall, W.; Labaum, Louis A.; Leduc, Mary Philip; Lisa, Manuel; O'Fallon, Benjamin; Piernas; Port Folio; Risley, W.; Stoddard, Amos; Williams, Henry W.; Yore, John E. Edwards's Great West and Her Commercial Metropolis, Embracing a General View of the West, and a Complete History of St. Louis, from the Landing of Ligueste, in 1764, to the Present Time; with Portraits and Biographies of Some of the Old Settlers, and Many of the Most Prominent Buisiness Men . St. Louis: Office of Edwards's Monthly, A Journal of Progress, 1860. [format: book], [genre: biography; history; letter; narrative]. Permission: St. Louis Mercantile Library
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=edwards.html


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Part II. History of the St. Louis Press. The Publications.

THERE are few cities in the Union, with the same population, which can boast of journals of a higher order than the city of St. Louis. They are all ably edited, and none of them but have a respectable circulation. We will give a list of them all, with the names of the respective editors. There will be a slight historical sketch of the most prominent, and accompanying the whole will be found the photographs and biographies of those gentlemen who most effectually represent the St. Louis press. We would gladly have inserted some other photographs and biographies of the talented gentlemen who represent the other journals, but this work has swelled into a magnitude little contemplated at its commencement.

The people of St. Louis are emphatically a reading people, and are sensibly aware of the colossal influence over all business pursuits which a generous support of newspapers always produces; and it is one of the most infallible signs of the business extent and success in St. Louis to see her journals thus handsomely supported.

The Missouri Republican.

The Missouri Republican is the oldest newspaper west of the Mississippi Valley, and, with but two exceptions, is the largest sheet in the Union. It was established in July, 1808, in a small room in a one-story building, under the name of the Missouri Gazette, and the man who set up the type for the first issue is still living in the state of Indiana, by the name of Hincle. He has been recently in St. Louis, and called to see the establishment of the journal that many years ago was no larger in dimensions than a quarto page. The paper has undergone many changes since that time. The little one-story house, in which first it had its being, has long since disappeared, and now a colossal six-story building is scarcely sufficient to afford room for the requirements of the journal.

The Republican, in the various gradations of its advance, is as sure an index of the growth of St. Louis as is a mathematical calculation. Its little small columns first suited the small village, and as year by year the town grew, it swelled in its dimensions; and when St. Louis became the metropolis of the West, it had outstripped in size and circulation every other journal west of the Alleghany Mountains. It has ever been devoted to the welfare of the city, and St. Louis owes much of its present important position to the influence of its columns.

The Missouri Republican is now owned by Messrs. George Knapp, Nathaniel Paschall, and John Knapp. It has a daily circulation the

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largest in the city, a tri-weekly, and weekly one, also two California editions. There are one hundred and seventy-six hands employed in its office, and the weekly expenses are $5,000. Nathaniel Paschall is its chief editor, assisted by an efficient corps of talented gentlemen.

The Missouri Democrat.

The Missouri Democrat was established in 1852 by William McKee and William Hill, under propitious auspices. All the patronage which had been bestowed upon the Sentinel and Union, two popular journals, was turned upon the new enterprise; for both of these papers were discontinued at the commencement of the Democrat; so that it could enter upon its career with the fairest prospects.

The wants of the community required the establishment of a journal of the political tenets advocated by the Democrat, for since the establishment of the "Barnburner" some years previously by Mr. McKee, in 1848, freesoilism had become very popular, and the new journal came into being with hosts of friends. In consequence of feeble health, Mr. Hill sold out his interest to Mr. George M. Fishback, a son of Judge Fishback, and a humorous and popular writer. He is the commercial editor of the paper, and is most efficient in that department.

Day by day the Democrat has been gathering strength and popularity, and now, in the eighth year of its existence, ranks second to no other paper in the great Mississippi Valley.

The Daily Evening News and Intelligencer.

The Daily Evening News, jointly owned by Charles G. Ramsey and Abraham S. Mitchell, was established in 1852, and started with the small circulation of five hundred copies. It was ably edited and soon became regarded with favor by the community. Its circulation has continually increased until it has reached 4,000 dailies, 7,000 weeklies, and 500 triweeklies, and the weekly expenses of the establishment are nearly $1,000 Mr. Abraham S. Mitchell, editor, Mr. Daniel N. Grisson, associate-editor. There are also able reporters connected with the journal.

The Evening Bulletin.

This already popular journal was established in 1859 by Messrs. Peckam & Bittenger, who, in a few months afterward, disposed of it to Mr. Eugene Lougmaier, a young gentleman of fine attainments, who has commenced his editorial career with much promise.

Mr. Longmaier is particularly suited to the atmosphere of St. Louis, for he was born in the Mound City — his parents also, and his grandparents; and his great-grandmother, Madame Elizabeth Ortes, is the oldest inhabitant of the place. His journal is decidedly partisan, and embraces the Democratic creed. It has a daily and weekly issue.

The St. Louis Daily Express.

The St. Louis Daily Express was established in 1858, by Wm. Cuddy, a gentleman for many years practically connected with journalism. Its first issue was in a miniature form, which continued for some months,

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until its increasing patronage justified its increasing size. It is now a large and respectable sheet, and progressing in influence and circulation. It is published also weekly.

The Home Press.

This is the name of a highly promising journal, born at the commencement of the year 1800, and under the charge of R. V. Kennedy, T. M. Halpin, and James Peckam. It is truly a family and literary paper, and the only one that can lay claim to that appellation west of the Mississippi.

The St. Louis Daily Herald.

This popular sheet was established in December, 1852. It is at present owned and ably edited by Mr. James L. Faucett, under whose efficient management it has reached an extensive circulation. It has a daily circulation, and likewise an extensive weekly one.

There are also in the city of St. Louis several other daily and weekly newspapers published in the English language — the St. Louis Observer, published weekly by A. F. Cox, and edited by the Rev. Milton Bird; the St. Louis Presbyterian, published weekly by Messrs. Keith & Woods, and edited by the Rev. James H. Page; the St. Louis Christian Advocate, a weekly sheet, published by the Methodist Conference, and edited by the Rev. D. R. M'Anally; the Western Watchman, published weekly, and edited by the Rev. William Cromwell; the Central Christian Advocate, a weekly sheet, edited by the Rev. Joseph Brooks; and the Western Banner, published weekly, and edited by Mr. B. D. Killian.

All of these journals are edited with ability, have a respectable circulation, and exercise an important influence in the various circles of society.

RICHARD EDWARDS' PUBLICATIONS.

The People's Press. — A daily journal, independent in politics and religion; its aim, the people's good.

The People's Weekly Press. — An Excelsior family newspaper.

Edwards' Monthly. — A journal of western progress, an organ of the progression in art, literature, science, agriculture, banking, internal improvements, etc., etc.

Edwards' Western Almanac — A correct and standard almanac for the million, containing also sprinklings in every department of knowledge — a yearly visitor which every family looks for with pleasure.

GERMAN NEWSPAPERS.

As the Germans form at least one-half of our Great Metropolis, it may well be supposed that their interest is fully represented by a number of journals in their native language. Wherever they are found the Germans are characterized by the possession of those elements of character which always contribute to their worldly prosperity. They are not as fast in their ideas as Young America, but they have more solidity of character, and are more constant and untiring in their pursuits, and are generally

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more sure of gaining the race in life and arriving at the goal of fortune They resemble the tortoise in the fable — slow, constant, and successful.

Anzeiger des Westens — (Henry Boernstein proprietor.)

This popular and influential journal was established October 20th, 1835. It is the oldest German newspaper in the city of St. Louis, but had to content itself with a small issue of only 500 copies the first year of its existence. The energy and talent of Henry Boernstein, to whom it owes its creation, soon made its merit apparent, and its circulation rapidly increased. Now it has a daily issue of 6,219, and a weekly one of 5,747. Editors, Henry Boernstein and Charles L. Bernays.

From the same office also issue two Sunday papers, the Saloon, established in 1854, and the Westliche Blaetter in 1859. They have conjointly a circulation of 1,500 copies. All of the papers are conducted in a manner which evinces a knowledge of the wants of the people, tact, and ability.

St. Louis Daily Chronicle.

This ably edited paper is owned by Mr. Francis Saler and Mr. Adelbert Loehr. It has not been in existence many years, but has already a large circulation and a widespread influence. The St. Louis Weekly Chronicle, under the charge of the same proprietor and editor, is in increasing demand and gotten up in an attractive form.

Der Herald des Glaubens.

Der Herald des Glaubens is a Catholic Sunday journal, under the charge of Mr. Anthony Bockling. It has many friends, and is rapidly increasing its circulation.

Wesliche Post.

Wesliche Post is published daily and weekly. It is received with much favor by the public, and its columns bear ample testimony that they are under charge of talented and experienced editors. They are journals of intrinsic value, and have an extensive and growing circulation. Messrs. Daenzer & Wenzell, editors and proprietors. The Mississippi Blaetter, a popular Sunday paper, is issued by the same gentlemen.

Mississippi Handel's Zeitung.

This is the only German paper west of New York that may be called a thorough commercial journal. It was established by Mr. Robert Widman in 1857. It commenced in the very midst of great pecuniary pressure, but has met with the most sanguine success. It has doubled its size and has a large circulation. It is a weekly sheet and under the editorial charge of Robert Widman, Dr. Koch, and Joseph Bauer.

Revue de l'Quest — (a French newspaper, J. Wolf proprietor).

This ably edited journal is well known amid the educated portion of the French inhabitants of the city, and likewise among those American families, of whom there is a great number, that are familiar with the French language. It was established in 1854, and has now a circulation of 2,500. It is a weekly sheet, and Mr. Louis Cortambert, a gentleman of fine literary attainments, is its accomplished editor.

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Biographies. Nathaniel Paschall, Editor of "The Republican."

IN writing the biography of Nathaniel Paschall it is but proper to premise that he is the oldest editor west of the Mississippi River, and from his long connection with the most influential journal in the west, is more extensively known than any citizen in Missouri.

He was born April 4th, 1804, at Knoxville, Tennessee. When he was but a child his father removed to St. Genevieve, where he remained but a limited time; for, having lost his wife in his new abode, he came to St. Louis. While in St. Genevieve, the little advantages afforded by the village school were enjoyed by the subject of this memoir, and when he came to St. Louis, though but twelve years of age, his business life commenced, and he became a worker in the busy hive of population.

At the time of his advent in St. Louis, the Republican, under another name, had been in existence some eight years, and being agreeable to his inclinations, which even at that early age tended to a love of knowledge, he was apprenticed to Mr. Joseph Charless, its proprietor, and commenced learning a pursuit for which a predisposition appears to have fitted him, and which he has pursued with so much success. His ambition, his tact, and natural talents quickly passed him through the various gradations of his art. He was not only ambitious to excel in the mechanical execution of his business, but having a thirst for literature, he read with avidity the standard authors of his language, and, studying their style, learned the art of composition, and long before he was free from his indenture, he could, and did write spicy editorials.

Two years after the retirement of Mr. Joseph Charless from the printing business, his son, Edward Charless, assumed the proprietorship, and under his charge the paper took the name which it now bears. The paper then underwent some changes in its proprietorship, all of which time Mr. Paschall remained connected with it, until, in 1827, the firm became Charless & Paschall, and while in this connection the little weekly sheet was increased several times in size, as the wants of the community required, and first came to have a tri-weekly and then a daily existence. From his first advent as a writer he became devoted to the interests of his adopted state and city, and the almost omnipotent influence of the Republican, from his first connection with it, was lent to advance and advocate all measures that were likely to forward the progress of St. Louis and subserve the interest of Missouri. He became one of the proprietors of the Republican in 1827, and in 1837 he and Mr. Charless disposed of the Republican to Messrs. Chambers, Harris, and Knapp.

When Mr. Paschall retired from the Republican he had amassed an ample competency, but, meeting with some pecuniary reverses, which rendered it necessary for him again to take up the pen, which before had been the means that raised him to wealth and position, he then commenced,

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in connection with Charles G. Ramsay, the publication of a journal styled the New Era, which was received with great favor by the people, and for some time exercised an important influence over the current events of the day. Being elected clerk of the Court of Common Pleas, he gave up, to some extent, the editorial chair, to fulfil the duties of his new appointment. About this time he was invited to become associate editor of the Republican, then under the charge of Colonel Chambers and George Knapp, and again became connected with the journal, which he had raised to importance and influence during his proprietorship. As associate-editor he continued in connection with the Republican until the death of Colonel Chambers; and when the family of the lamented deceased disposed of his interest, Mr. Paschall again became one of the proprietors of the journal, and the firm of George Knapp & Co. came into existence.

In politics Mr. Paschall has ever been allied with the old Whig party, and during its existence was its most efficient champion in advocating and defending its principles, and the Republican was the organ of the party. When the Whig party died, Mr. Paschall, being identified with no other, in the presidential contest of 1856 advocated the election of Buchanan, as being the least objectionable of the candidates, without committing himself to the support of the party to which he belonged. Since the old Whig party, with which he was so long identified, is no more in existence, he has become pledged to no other, and reserves to himself the independence and privilege of supporting what men and measures will be most subservient to the interests of the state and country.

There are few men now living more intimately acquainted with the political history of the western country than Mr. Paschall, and, becoming a resident of Missouri while it was a territory, he has efficiently aided her in her colossal progress.

In his friendship Mr. Paschall is warm and constant, and those who possess it regard it as an invaluable boon. His name adds weight with whatever it is associated, and is familiar to almost every hearthstone in Missouri.

In 1832, Mr. Paschall was married to Mrs. Martha E. Edgar, and has a large family of children. He may be said to have spent a long life amid the wearing labors and mental excitement incident to editorial life. As a writer he is remarkable for his perspicuity, and his language possesses a massiveness which is overwhelming in argument. Though possessing sufficient acrimony as a politician to make him dreaded by his opponents, he never forgets the pride of self-respect, which prevents him from indulging in the low, brawling slang of Billingsgate abuse. He has exercised the duties of an editor for nearly forty years in St. Louis, and has ever been an advocate of every measure, and gave them the powerful support of his columns, which had for their aim the benefit of the city or state.

"Beneath the rule of men entirely great,
The pen is mightier than the sword —
The arch-enchanter's wand" —

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A. P. Ladew.

A. P. LADEW was born in Albany, New York, September 13th, 1811. His father, Stephen Ladew, was a man of fine abilities, following merchandising as a vocation, and served at one time in the confidential relation of secretary to Governor De Witt Clinton.

Young Ladew was sent to school until he was thirteen years of age, when he was put to learn the trade of type-making and stereotyping. He finished his trade in the well-known establishment of James Conner, now James Conner & Sons, whose establishment is one of the institutions of New York, and the most extensive in the city. After finishing his trade he was fortunate in forming the acquaintance and winning the confidence of Mr. L. Johnson of Philadelphia, whose magnificent type-foundry is well known throughout the Union, and under his patronage and that of George Charles, he came to St. Louis in 1838, and commenced the type-foundry business, the firm being styled George Charles & Co. This connection remained for four years, when Mr. Ladew bought out his associates, and to this day continues in the business. The St. Louis Type-Foundry is widely known in the West, and the firm of Ladew, Peers, & Co. is extensively and honorably known in the business world of St. Louis.

From the circumstance of keeping a type-foundry, Mr. Ladew has had more or less acquaintance with the different newspaper enterprises that have started in St. Louis since he has been established in business. The establishing of a journal is precarious in any city, but in St. Louis it is particularly unfortunate. The warm rays of hope always flood the hearts of those who are making preparations to issue a new sheet. They purchase their type with bright anticipations of the future, and soon the new creation is before the public. The rare combination of tact, talent, and capital is wanting to render it successful, and after a few days or a few months it dies and is heard of no more. It is the experience of Mr. Ladew, and all who own type-foundries, that newspaper enterprises are the most precarious of all ventures, and so rarely do they succeed, that any one who engages in them is almost certain of failure.

Mr. Ladew has been twice married. His first wife was Miss Catherine Leets of New Jersey; and his present estimable lady was Mrs. Lizzie E. Clark, whom he married, September 3d, 1856. He has been and is connected with some of the most important of our public institutions, which is evidence of the confidence he enjoys in the community. He has been a director of the St. Louis Building and Saving Association, was a member of the city council, was vice-president of the Commercial Insurance Company, and is a director in the Bank of St. Louis.

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Colonel George Knapp.

GEORGE KNAPP was born September 25th, 1814, in Montgomery, Orange county, New York, and when but a child, his parents immigrated to St. Louis in December, 1819. At the early age of twelve he entered as an apprentice in the Republican office, then owned by Messrs. Charless & Paschall. In 1834 he reached the age of manhood proficient in his business, and, by his uprightness of character possessed of the esteem of a large circle of acquaintances. He still continued in the Republican, and two years afterward, August of 1836, he received from the proprietors of the journal an expressive mark of their esteem, by being presented with an interest in the book and jobbing department; and when Messrs. Charless & Paschall sold out in 1837, he became one of the proprietors with Messrs. Chambers & Harris.

It is natural for all men to feel a commendable pride when they see that their merit has become acknowledged, and their efforts have become rewarded by a well-deserved success, and George Knapp must have felt to the utmost the whispering praise of self-respect, when he found that at the early age of twenty-three he had become one of the proprietors of the most widely circulated and most influential journals in Missouri. When a small boy he entered the office in an humble capacity, and by the possession of sterling merit, and with a will that was determined upon success, he carved his way to fortune and position. He has been one of the proprietors of the Republican through all of its changes, from 1837 to the present.

George Knapp, in 1835, took a part in the volunteer military service; and when the news flew through the Union like wild-fire that the troops of the United States and those of Mexico were in conflict, he was among the first to volunteer his services in 1846, and served in Mexico as lieutenant in the St. Louis Grays of the St. Louis Legion. He afterward became captain and then colonel of the first battalion of the St. Louis Legion. As an officer he has always been most popular and respected.

Colonel Knapp, by his virtues and his connection with the Republican is well known in St. Louis, and there is none whose fair fame is more pure. He is zealous in advocating and assisting all public-spirited enterprises; and many of the public buildings which now ornament the city owe their erection much to the zealous part he took in personally soliciting subscriptions. He has also been a stanch friend to railroads, and has subscribed liberally to their stock. He has, by his industry and business qualifications, amassed a large fortune, but it has not chilled or destroyed the warm sympathies which make him so sensibly alive to the misfortunes of others. He is social, charitable, and public-spirited — alive to misfortune, and ready to relieve it; and quick to advocate any measure that will advance the interest of St. Louis or his adopted state.

Colonel George Knapp was married December 22d, 1840, to Miss Eleanor McCartan, daughter of Thomas McCartan, late of St. Louis. He is of a retiring disposition, more ready at all times to advance the merits of others than display his own; and among the one hundred and ninety thousand citizens of St. Louis, there is no one more popular and respected.

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Colonel Charles Keemle.

IN October, 1800, in the good old city of Philadelphia, Charles Keemle was born. His grandfather was a respectable physician, who emigrated from Amsterdam and settled in the land of Penn. His father was a skilful mechanic, yet devoted but a little of his life to that pursuit, but as a commander of trading vessels, spent most of his time upon the rivers and the ocean. His mother died in the city of Norfolk, Virginia, when he was but six years of age, and he was placed in charge of an uncle until he was nine years of age, and then was put to learn the printing business in the office of the Norfolk Herald, where he remained until 1816. He is, consequently, the oldest printer west of the Mississippi.

The love of adventure was always a dominant trait in the character of Charles Keemle, and on leaving the office of the Norfolk Herald, at the suggestion of Dr. Jennings of Norfolk, who had a brother resident in Indiana, and looking forward to the chief magistracy of the state, he determined to go to Vincennes, Indiana, and there establish a paper. Accompanied by a fellow-printer of much more mature years, he started for his future destination, where he arrived March, 1817, having performed that portion of the journey on foot between Baltimore and Pittsburgh. On March 14th, the first number of the Indiana Sentinel was issued, published by Dillworth & Keemle.

Believing, from the location of Vincennes, that it would never become a great city, young Keemle accepted the invitation given to him by many influential citizens of St. Louis, and arrived there August 2d, 1817. He took charge of a paper called the Emigrant, which was the second journal west of the Mississippi, which was afterward merged into the St. Louis Enquirer, with which Thomas H. Benton was connected in the capacity of editor. The continued confinement beginning to tell on his constitution he gave up the printing business in August, 1820, and engaged as clerk to the American Fur-Company; and now commences a portion of his history which is filled with romantic incident.

The company started from St. Louis September, 1820, and spent the winter in trading successfully with the Kansas tribe of Indians.

In 1821, Mr. Keemle was selected by Major Joshua Pilcher to make one of a company of fifty-four, carefully picked for the occasion, to penetrate to the Rocky Mountains, to trade with the savage hordes of Indians who inhabited those far off wilds. The party started from Fort Lisa, in the vicinity of Council Bluff, and, after some perilous adventures, arrived at the mouth of the Yellowstone and commenced trading with the Crows, who inhabited that country, and sending out in all directions the experienced hunters and trappers that they might obtain as large a quantity of beaver-skins as possible, which kind of fur was most desired by the company. Mr. Keemle acted as agent and clerk of the expedition, and for three years suffered all the hardships incident to living and trading in the remote wilderness, far from the pale of civilization.

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While in these remote regions, he narrowly escaped with his life from a murderous attack by an overwhelming number of Indians upon the few daring spirits who had ventured into their country. It was the closing of the Spring of 1823, that the company, which had become reduced to forty-one men, were trading on the head-waters of the Missouri, and from significant signs discovered that the Blackfeet Indians, who roamed over those regions, evinced a hostile intention. They saw large companies of that warlike tribe roaming in their vicinity, and evidently watching their movements. The company immediately retraced their steps, and endeavored to regain the Crow country, where the natives were friendly and the feudal enemies of the Blackfeet. The last-named Indians, on discovering their intention, gathered themselves into a formidable body of more than a thousand warriors, and early one morning attacked the party amid deafening yells, as they were passing along the base of a small mountain skirting the Yellowstone. To have yielded to their enemies would have subjected them to captivity, then torture, and finally death. Resistance, though against such fearful odds, was the only alternative, and the party had previously made up their minds to defend themselves to the last extremity to save their scalp-locks from the clutch of the savage. In the murderous attack the two leaders of the expedition, Immell and Jones, fell early in the engagement, and then the command devolved upon Mr. Keemle, who ordered the men to fight while retreating from ravine to ravine, and after a conflict of eight hours succeeded in driving off their enemies, who had hung upon their path howling and yelling like so many demons — with considerable loss. The little party suffered severely, having had ten killed, nine wounded, and one was missing. They afterward reached a Crow village, and manufacturing some boats, arrived safely at the mouth of the Yellowstone.

Colonel Keemle remained connected with the company until 1825, when he returned to St. Louis and associated himself again with the printing business, and although he had several lucrative offers made to him nothing could tempt him again to the Yellowstone. He was associated with five or six newspaper enterprises, none of which had a permanent existence; but during their time were the organs of the Democratic party.

In 1839, Colonel Keemle was married to the only daughter of Thomas P. Oliver, now of Illinois, and has a family of three children. He possesses, in a high degree, the esteem of his fellow-citizens, and has been offered several honorable positions. In 1839 he was nominated for mayor, but declined running, and when General Harrison became president, he received the first appointment made by him in this state, that of superintendent of Indian affairs for Missouri. In 1840 he received the appointment of secretary of the interior, and under General Taylor's administration, that of Indian agent for the entire Platte River district, both of which he declined. In 1853 he was elected recorder of deeds for St. Louis county, which office he still holds.

Colonel Keemle is one of the most popular men in the city of St. Louis. He is in the sixtieth year of his age, but possesses health and vigor sufficient to have another bout with the Indians at the mouth of the Yellowstone.

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Abram S. Mitchell, Editor of the St. Louis Evening News.

THE subject of this sketch was born December 1st, 1820, near the city of Nashville, Davidson county, Tennessee. His parents were both natives of Virginia. His grandfather, Thomas Mitchell, was a merchant in Lynchburgh, Virginia, during the Revolution, and was a man of education and fine literary attainments. But his store was plundered by the British, and he was reduced to poverty. He next resorted to teaching; but died before his own children had derived much benefit from his instruction. The family being now quite destitute and helpless, were driven to emigrate to the wilds of Tennessee. There were two sons, Thomas and Robert J., and two or three daughters. After struggling in various ways to support himself as he grew up, among others, working at the shoe business, Robert J. Mitchell, the father of the subject of this sketch, joined the standard of General Jackson, who was raising volunteers for the Indian wars, and served under that leader in a campaign against the Creeks, and also in one against the Seminoles. Returning to Tennessee, he married, commenced farming, and in 1827 removed to the Hatchess River, in West Tennessee, and there, in Tipton county, the family still resides.

Abram S. Mitchell was sent by his father to the schools of the neighborhood, but he soon exhausted the little that the schools in that new country could impart, but was fortunate enough to meet at that time with an excellent teacher in the person of the Rev. James Holmes, who had formerly been a missionary among the Indians, and who earnestly advised him, when he could make circumstances suit, to complete his education at college. During intermissions of school, he sought work to aid in his own support. He applied for work unsuccessfully in a brickyard, where he was rejected for want of strength, and was afterward employed in tending a bark-mill in a tannery. In 1837, just as he was preparing to finish his education by a collegiate course, his father became bankrupt by having become security for a sheriff, and all of his property was sold to meet his bond. However, a few years later, Mr. Robert W. Sandford, a friend of the family, feeling an interest in young Mitchell, and appreciating his desire for an education, aided him in going to college at Danville, Kentucky, where he remained only eighteen months, and graduated with full honors, having, by dint of application, accomplished in that time what usually required a much longer time to perform. He taught school until he relieved himself of the debt he incurred in his education (about $700), and then studied law in Danville, and established a newspaper called the Weekly Kentucky Tribune, in connection with Mr. James S. Hall. That year he supported the whig candidate for governor, who, after election, before making any other appointment, bestowed upon him the office of assistant-secretary of state.

About this time Mr. Mitchell married Miss Bodley, of Lexington, Kentucky. After serving the term of his appointment, he and his father-in-law,

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law, Mr. H. I. Bodley, determined on removing to St. Louis, which they did in 1849, the season of the dreadful visitation by the cholera, by which he lost his wife and child. This domestic desolation induced him to return to Kentucky, where, in a short time, he received an invitation to become assistant-editor of the St. Louis Intelligencer, then about to come into existence. He accepted the invitation, but did not long remain connected with the paper. He received an invitation to become editor of the Republican Banner at Nashville, Tennessee, which he declined. He became land-agent, and then secretary of the Pacific Railroad Company, and some time after leaving this appointment, at the instigation of some of the most prominent citizens of Missouri, Mr. Mitchell, in connection with Charles G. Ramsey, established the Evening News. He is half-owner and chief editor of the journal.

Mr. Mitchell is a vigorous and graceful writer, and his journal has an extensive circulation. He was married the second time, in September, 1851, to Miss Mary Brent Talbot, granddaughter of Governor William Owsley, Kentucky, whom he politically supported when he first wielded the editorial pen.

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William McKee, Senior Proprietor of the Missouri Democrat.

WILLIAM McKEE was born in New York city, September 24th, 1815. He is of Irish descent, and his father, after emigrating to this country, was successfully engaged for many years in the lumber business. He was captain of a vessel, and plied between Maine and the West Indies, carrying lumber from Bangor to Jamaica.

Captain McKee enjoyed the good-will of all who knew him, and had the confidence which years of integrity in business relations always establish.

William McKee had fair opportunities of education; for, after finishing the programme of common-school education, he was sent to the Lafayette Academy, where he remained for some time prosecuting his studies; and, at the age of fifteen, entered as clerk in the office of Major Noah, who was at that time the editor of the New York Courier and Enquirer. Some time afterward, when Major Noah sold out to J. Watson Webb, Mr. McKee still retained his place under the new proprietor, and remained altogether in the office for five years. At the expiration of that time, Major Noah, having a high opinion of his business ability, offered him a desirable situation in the office of the Evening Star, which he accepted, and remained in that connection till 1841, when, wishing to he a sharer in the advantages which the Western country offered to aspiring spirits, he emigrated to St. Louis.

William McKee enjoyed rare advantages of accomplishing himself in the art of newspaper publication, being so long in the office of Major Noah, one of the oldest editors, and one of the most finished scholars of the day; and on his advent in St. Louis, he determined to turn his knowledge, gained under such auspices, to some account, and purchased an interest in the Evening Gazette, in connection with Mr. Ruth. He remained part proprietor of that paper for two years, and then, disposing of his interest, commenced the job-printing business.

At that time, the political doctrines of the Hunker and Barnburner factions, originating in the empire state, commenced to spread over the whole Union, each party having its advocates. Mr. McKee was a supporter of the Free-soil doctrine, and started a campaign sheet called "The Barnburner" — the first Free-soil paper that commenced its career in the slaveholding state of Missouri. He then, in conjunction with William Hill, commenced the publication of the Signal in 1850, advocating the same political principles; and then, having purchased the Union, the proprietors merged the two papers into a new existence — and the present Missouri Democrat came into being.

It required all the enterprise, the hopeful faith, and energy for which Mr. McKee is so remarkable, to make a paper advocating Free-soil doctrines successful in Missouri; yet he accomplished the difficult feat. He

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purchased afterward the interest of his partner, and, after being some time sole proprietor of the paper, he took into partnership Mr. George W. Fishback, son of Judge Fishback, of Ohio, a gentleman of good attainments, and a fluent and graceful writer. Mr. McKee is still the senior proprietor of the Democrat.

July 18th, 1855, Mr. McKee was married to Miss Eliza Hill, daughter of Samuel Hill, of New York. That he exerts a remarkable influence over the current events of his time, is evinced from the fact that the journal under his control is the organ of the Free-soil party in St. Louis, and, it may be said, of the whole state. He has hosts of warm friends, and the business relations of nearly twenty years' residence in St. Louis have given him the entire and deserved confidence of the community.

George W. Fishback, Joint Proprietor of the Missouri Democrat, and Its Commercial Editor.

THE subject of this memoir is a native of the old Buckeye state, and was born in the little town of Batavia, Clermont county, Ohio, in December 3d, 1828. His father was a Virginian, who emigrated at an early day to the southern portion of Ohio, when it was almost a wild, and commenced the practice of the law, which he pursued very successfully for thirty-five years, at one time being one of the judges of the Court of Common Pleas.

George W. Fishback, being intended by his father for the law, had all the preparatory education so essential for the proper qualification of that profession. He was educated at College Hill, Ohio, and graduated at that institution. Being anxious to seek his fortunes in another sphere, go emigrated to St. Louis, and, disliking the monotony of a lawyer's life, he commenced the still more laborious life of a journalist, and connected himself with the Missouri Democrat as commercial editor, and soon after became joint-proprietor.

Mr. Fishback is devoted to his profession, and writes readily on the current events of the day, and his contributions can readily be known by the rich humorous vein in which he frequently indulges. He is still youthful, but exercises a wide and deserving influence in the home of his adoption.

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History of the Various Journals That Have Been Published in St. Louis.

OF all ventures in the business world, the publishing of a newspaper is the most precarious. It is far more hazardous and uncertain than commercial pursuits; is attended with toil that knows no cessation; and is daily liable to anathemas, which, if coming from holy lips, would consign it to eternal perdition; yet, in despite of this certain destruction of worldly hopes, which awaits the adventurer in a newspaper enterprise, there is some mystical fascination which causes thousands to venture upon its dangerous current, where they rarely escape the fate that awaited the mariners of yore when navigating the seas containing the fatal rock and eddying whirlpool.

It will be of interest to the reader, and a necessary portion of the history of St. Louis, without which it would be incomplete, to give a succinct account of the different newspapers that have had their existence in our city, and played their different parts in the political and literary drama of St. Louis existence. We will lift the curtain which has fallen, and once more look upon the parts which they played. We will not touch upon those again whose history we have before given.

The second newspaper was established by Joshua Norvell, in 1816, and was called The Western Journal. It was, soon after its birth, purchased by Sergeant Hall, who changed its name to that of the Emigrant and General Advertiser, a weekly sheet, which at first was somewhat popular, but, commencing to decline, it was sold to Isaac N. Henry, Colonel Thomas H. Benton, and Mr. Maury, and the name was changed to that of the St. Louis Enquirer, which, from the very first, became strongly partisan, advocating the Democratic political creed. It had an existence at the time when the question was mooted in what manner Missouri should be admitted into the Union — whether as a slave or free state. Colonel Benton, the editor in chief of the Enquirer, advocated the slave measure, and a pro-slavery constitution was adopted in 1820, when Missouri was admitted into the Union. A little while after this, the paper changed hands. Colonel Benton having been elected United States senator, and Mr. Henry having died, the remaining partner, Mr. Maury, disposed of the Enquirer to Patrick H. Ford, who, in 1823, sold it to General Duff Green, who was afterward the editor of the United States Telegraph at Washington, a democratic organ. He edited the paper until 1825, when he sold it to Charles Keemle and S. W. Foreman; and on the early dissolution of that copartnership in 1826, the Enquirer was sold to Luke E. Lawless, at that time a lawyer of high standing, and as a politician a stanch supporter of Colonel Benton. The paper, during the short period he held it, was edited with much ability. He became a jurist of much ability. In 1827, Charles Keemle, one of its old proprietors, again purchased the Enquirer, in conjunction with William Orr, and changed its name to the St. Louis Beacon, which name it continued to bear until 1832, when it died. It was always a weekly sheet, and Democratic through all its changes. During certain periods of its existence it exercised a very important political influence.

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In 1820, The Herald was established by Messrs. Orr & Fleming, which had but a temporary existence.

In 1827, The St. Louis Times, a Democratic journal, was brought into being by Messrs. Stine & Miller, and edited by S. W. Foreman. Though Democratic, it was anti-Benton, and rabidly opposed, without effect, the re-election of Colonel Benton to the senate. It afterward passed into the hands of Miller & Lovejoy, and then was conducted by Miller, Murray & Richards. It had some hopes at one period of its existence, but, from the want of popular support, soon became involved in pecuniary difficulties, and finally, in 1832, was sold under legal process, and the fixtures purchased by Colonel Charles Keemle. The journal was suffered to expire. When under Miller & Lovejoy, the paper was tinged with abolitionism.

In 1831, a paper was started by James A. Birch.

During 1831, The Workingman's Advocate was started by Mr. Steel, which strongly advocated the principles of the Democratic party, and, being bought out by James B. Bowlin & Mayfield, was changed to the St. Louis Argus. It was at this time very ably edited, advocating the cause of Democracy, and received considerable patronage. It was then transferred to Mansfield, Lawhead & Corbin. It continued under these last proprietors but a short time, with deserved popularity, and then came into the possession, successively, of Thomas Watson, Davis, and Colonel Gilpin. It was then purchased by S. Penn, a gentleman from Louisville, and an experienced and able journalist, who changed the title of the paper to that of the Missouri Reporter, and Samuel Treat was joined with him in the editorship — the Reporter becoming the organ of the Democratic party. After the death of Mr. Penn, it came into the possession of L. Pickering, when it underwent another change in name, being called The Union. It remained a short time in his possession, and was transferred to R. Phillips, who, finding it in a languishing state, sold it to William McKee, the publisher of the Signal, a freesoil sheet, and the Union and Signal were merged in a new name — the present Missouri Democrat.

In 1834, The Commercial Bulletin came into existence, under the conduct of Colonel Charles Keemle, William P. Clark, and S. B. Churchill. It then passed into the hands of William Clark, and shortly after was owned by Churchill & Ramsey, when it became Whig; and then afterward, being purchased by V. P. Ellis, it again changed its politics, and became the organ of a new political creed — "The Native American party," whose principles at that time were being promulgated in St. Louis. For a time, the new doctrines of political worship gained many advocates, and the paper flourished in the sunshine of popular favor; but soon the plausibility and novelty of the doctrines ceased to attract and delude, and the paper had but few readers. It was then purchased by Cady and Oliver Harris, and soon died for want of popular support.

There were some other journals that had so transient an existence that we shall not enter into any minute details concerning them — The St. Louis Pennant, a literary paper, established by G. G. Foster and Thomas Watson. The Evening Gazette was established in 1838, by David B. Holbrook & G. S. Allen; and was edited by William S. Allen. In 1841, P. A. Gould purchased Allen's interest, and the firm was titled Holbrook

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& Gould. In 1842, the Gazette was sold to Henry Singleton, and in 1843, was purchased by McKee & Ruth, and edited by Edmond Flagg. It was then sold in 1847 to Lord, and then died. The Mirror, established by Ruggles.

In 1837, The Saturday News was brought into being by Colonel Charles Keemle and Major Alphonso Wetmore, both gentlemen having large editorial experience, and the latter was justly celebrated for his literary attainments. The journal was purely a literary one, but it did not succeed according to its deserts. Colonel Keemle retired from it a short time after its birth, and it was continued by Major Wetmore, and then died.

In 1841, The People's Organ was established by Higgens, and then sold out to Anderson & Staley; Staley sold out to Edmond Flagg, and the firm became titled, Anderson & Flagg; Flagg then retired, and it was finally conducted by Anderson alone. Its existence was short.

In 1845, the Reveille, a literary paper of undoubted merit, was founded by Colonel Keemle, Matt, and Jos. M. Field; few journals were better conducted, and during its existence it was a weekly welcome to every family of cultivated taste. In 1850, it was sold to Anderson & Company, proprietors of the People's Organ, and blended with that paper.

In 1846, The Native American was started by V. Ellis, and had a fine run for a time, but it soon found how uncertain is popular favor, and finally died through neglect.

In 1848, The New Era was established by Paschall & Ramsey, and at once occupied a large share of public patronage. Its forte was its commercial superiority, and in politics it was Whig. It was sold to Thomas Yeatinan and J. B. Crocket, and changed to the Intelligencer, and afterward passed into the hands of George K. Budd, and then was purchased by A. S. Mitchell & Co., the proprietors of the Evening News, and blended with that paper, which is still in existence.

We will now select the number of the editorial fraternity, which have been coupled with the foregoing pages, who are yet alive, and who have become worthy of mention, from the prominent position which they occupy.

Charles Keemle is the oldest newspaper publisher and printer, west of the Mississippi, and is now the efficient recorder of the county of St. Louis. James H. Birch resides in Clinton county; was one of the judges of the Supreme Court of the state, and then register of the land-office. James B. Bowlin was for a long time judge of the Criminal Court for St. Louis district, and minister to Paraguay. A. R. Corbin was clerk of Committee of Private Land Claims at Washington, and such was his fitness for the office, and the influence of his personal worth, that he remained its incumbent for more than fifteen years, undisturbed by any administrations, though advocating political tenets at variance with his own. Samuel Treat is now an able jurist, presiding over the Circuit Court of the district of St. Louis. Josiah Anderson is the present proprietor of the St. Louis Price Current. Charles G. Ramsey and A. S. Mitchell are now the proprietors of the Evening News. William McKee is senior proprietor of the Missouri Democrat, and Nathaniel Paschall is one of the proprietors and editor-in-chief of the Missouri Republican, the oldest sheet in the state. Paschall is the oldest editor with the harness on in the Western country.

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William Allen has been register of the land-office. He was secretary of the Territory of New Mexico, in 1851, judge of County Court, in 1856 member of the Missouri legislature, in 1850-51, and is now associate editor of the Missouri Republican.

It will excite no envy, and be a just tribute to departed worth, if we say a few words concerning the literary abilities of the late Joseph M. Field, one of the editors of the Reveille. He was connected a long time with the New Orleans Picayune, and wrote under the nom de plume of "Straws." His productions under that signature were quoted extensively by the journals of the country, and his name became famous in literary annals. As a poet, he well could lay claim to that consciousness of inspiration uttered by one of the Roman bards — "Deus est in nobis." He was the author of several plays, became an actor of acknowledged merit, and was the first manager of the "Varieties Theatre" of our city. His high literary merit and warm social qualities are still interwoven with the pleasing reminiscences of the past in the memory of many of the inhabitants. His brother, M. C. Field, also deceased, is deserving of the same tribute, and was well known in St. Louis as a sparkling and classical writer.

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Religious Newspapers in St. Louis.

[We are indebted to the Rev. John Hogan, of St. Louis, for the following history of the religious newspapers that have been and are published in St. Louis.]

The first religious newspaper published in St. Louis, according to my recollection, was The St. Louis Observer, Rev. E. P. Lovejoy, editor. It was started, I think, in 1833, and was the organ of the Presbyterian Church. Some time after its commencement, there were many and very strong articles in favor of "abolitionism" published in the paper, which very much incensed the community, and the consequence was, the press and office were destroyed, and Mr. Lovejoy removed to Alton, where he published the Alton Observer.

The next paper (religious, I mean) started here — I think, in 1834, or 1835, as the organ of the Catholic Church — was The Shepherd of the Valley. I do not now recollect who was the editor, nor yet when the paper ceased to exist.

In 1839, I think, another Catholic paper was started here, by Mr. Thomas Mullen. My impression is, its title was The Catholic Banner. I am not able to state how long this paper was continued.

In July, 1844, Rev. H. Chamberlin started a paper, mainly in the interest of the Presbyterian Church, denominated The Herald of Religious Liberty. Do not know how long it continued.

In August, 1851, The St. Louis Christian Advocate, Rev. D. R. McAnally, editor, was started into being, and still exists, as the organ of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, for Missouri and Kansas.

In 1844, or 1845, Rev. J. T. Hinton, D. D., commenced here the publication of a paper called The Missouri Baptist, which was the avowed organ of the Baptist denomination in this and the surrounding states; but I am not now prepared to say how long it was published.

The Western Watchman, in the interest of the same denomination (Baptist), and which was commenced about 1848, by Rev. T. W. Lynd, D. D., as editor, most probably succeeded to the former, and only changed the title. Still continued.

In 1851, Mr. R. A. Bakewell started The Shepherd of the Valley, as organ of the Catholic Church; it existed some three years.

In 1852, The St. Louis Presbyterian, as the organ of the Presbyterian Church, was commenced by the Rev. E. Thompson Baird, as editor, and is still published, although the editor has been changed.

The Cumberland Presbyterian was commenced to be published here, I think, in 1852, as the organ of that denomination, by Rev. J. B. Logan, editor.

In the fall of 1853, I think, Rev. D. W. R. Trotter commenced here the publication of a paper called The Central Christian Advocate, as the organ of the Methodist Episcopal Church for Missouri, southern Illinois,

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Iowa, etc. This paper, after various vicissitudes, was finally adopted as a general Conference paper, and in 1856, or 1857, passed into the editorial charge of Rev. James Brooks, and is still published.

In 1855, I think it was, J. V. Huntington, LL. D., commenced the publication of another Catholic paper, in place of The Shepherd of the Valley, called The Leader. This paper only continued as a religious paper about a year, when it became a political paper under the same name, and subsequently ceased.

In July, 1858, the Observer took the place and patronage of The Cumberland Presbyterian, and was edited by Rev. Mr. Bird, who has now given place to Mr. A. F. Cox, who is editor and publisher.

In 1850, The Western Banner, organ of the Catholic Church, was commenced by Mr. B. D. Killian, and is still continued.

In 1860, another paper was started, called The Missouri Baptist, but I do not know who its editor is, nor yet what particular church it is to be the organ of.

The Herald and Era, as the organ of the Universalist Church. I do not recollect when the publication of this paper commenced here. Mr. Libby was, I think, connected with its origin, but I have not been able to see him, to get the date. I believe it is now published simultaneously here and at Indianapolis, Indiana.

The above is, I believe, a pretty full history of the religious newspapers that have been and are published here in the English language. Mr. A. F. Cox publishes here a quarterly, which is the organ of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and is as yet, I think, alone in that species of religious publication.

I deem it proper to add the publications in the German language here, of religious newspapers, and have purposely kept them by themselves.

The Lutheran, organ of that denomination, was commenced here in 1844, by Rev. F. W. Walter, and is still continued under the same editorial charge.

The Gott's Freund (in English, God's Friend) was commenced in 1852, by Mr. Besel, editor, and is still continued. It is, I believe, a Protestant publication, but I do not know to what denomination it belongs.

Herald des Glaubins (in English, Herald of Faith), under the auspices of the Catholic Church, was commenced in 1852, under the editorial charge of Rev. Mr. Vincent, and is still continued.

Her Frieadensbote (in English, Messenger of Peace), a Protestant publication, under the auspices of the Evangelical Churches, was commenced here in 1849, by Rev. Mr. Wull, and is still continued as a publication, but has recently been removed to Marthasville, Missouri.

Another publication in German, denominated the Protestant, has recently been commenced here. I do not know who the editor is.

There is also published here a paper called The Icarian, of which I know nothing.

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Edwards, Richard; Hopewell, M.; Ashley, William; Barry, James G.; Belt and Priest; Casey, John; Hall, W.; Labaum, Louis A.; Leduc, Mary Philip; Lisa, Manuel; O'Fallon, Benjamin; Piernas; Port Folio; Risley, W.; Stoddard, Amos; Williams, Henry W.; Yore, John E. Edwards's Great West and Her Commercial Metropolis, Embracing a General View of the West, and a Complete History of St. Louis, from the Landing of Ligueste, in 1764, to the Present Time; with Portraits and Biographies of Some of the Old Settlers, and Many of the Most Prominent Buisiness Men . St. Louis: Office of Edwards's Monthly, A Journal of Progress, 1860. [format: book], [genre: biography; history; letter; narrative]. Permission: St. Louis Mercantile Library
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=edwards.html
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