The Lawrenceville news. (Lawrenceville, Ga.) 1893-1897
Place of Publication:
- Lawrenceville, Gwinnett county
Dates of publication:
- Began in 1893? Ceased with Dec. 31, 1897 issue.
- Also on microfilm: Athens, Ga. : University of Georgia Libraries.
- Description based on: Vol. 1, no. 39 (July 27, 1894).
- Merged with: Gwinnett herald, to form: News-herald (Lawrenceville, Ga.).
The Lawrenceville news. July 27, 1894
Dennis W. D. Boully, a prolific Georgia newspaperman known for short tenures, left the Hawkinsville Dispatch (a paper he founded) to establish the Weekly Gwinnett Atlas in January 1871 in Lawrenceville, Georgia. Typical of Boully’s papers, the weekly sheet supported the Democratic Party but did not claim to be an outwardly political organ. In August 1871, true to his reputation, Boully sold the Atlas to Col. Tyler M.Peeples, but he remained connected with the paper as foreman. In the August 8, 1871 issue of the Georgia Weekly Telegraph and Georgia Journal & Messenger announcing the Atlas’ sale, the editor wrote, “brother Boully and Elam Christian are the grand pioneers of the Georgia Press.” Boully’s connection with the Atlas was severed entirely in September 1871 when he moved to West Point, Georgia and purchased the West Point Shield. Peeples changed the Atlas’ name to the Gwinnett Herald in mid-November 1871 and updated the paper’s type, prompting the Atlanta Weekly Sun from November 15, 1871 to note “the paper is already improving in appearance.” Peeples served as the Herald’s editor-in-chief and part owner until the Lawrenceville Publishing Company purchased the newspaper in 1897, and he oversaw the newspaper's growth into a large county paper of record. The Herald circulated not only in Gwinnett, but also Hall, Jackson, Milton, and Forsyth counties. In the early 1870s, the publication even served as legal organ for both Gwinnett and Forsyth counties. During those 26 years, Peeples briefly split ownership with Messrs. Yarbrough, Brackenridge, and Boyle, J. T. Wilson, Jr., and Jasper L. Hagood, respectively. Although accused of “fence riding” by the Jackson Herald in 1890, Peeples was a decidedly more political editor than Boully. He successfully ran a campaign, as a Democrat, for state senator in Georgia’s 34th senatorial district in 1882, and he made two unsuccessful attempts for Georgia’s ninth congressional district in 1890 and 1892. In 1892, Peeples positioned himself as a conservative Democrat opposed to the newly-formed Peoples’ Party of Georgia. He was not an editor known for fiery editorials, but the Gwinnett Herald was undoubtedly anti-populist. While Peeples campaigned, Jasper L. Hagood was assistant editor, but Peeples assumed full-time editorial duties the fall of 1892. Responding to an increase in mob violence, Peeples, in a May 1893 article, criticized vengeance taken by “ordinary rioters or lynch law” and stated such behavior, “must be suppressed if the entire power of the State is necessary to do it.The Herald was the sole newspaper in Gwinnett County for nearly 22 years before facing competition. In October 1893, George D. Rucker of the Alpharetta Free Press began gathering the necessary capital to establish a new weekly paper in Lawrenceville, Georgia. By November 1893, using former Free Press materials, Rucker published the first issue of the Lawrenceville News, and became the Gwinnett Herald’s direct competitor. The News was backed by a stock company under the name Lawrenceville Publishing Company, which notably had Judge William E. Simmons among its stockholders. Simmons’ father, James T. Simmons, founded an older iteration of the Lawrenceville News, which circulated between 1858 and 1865. William Simmons traveled the state speaking in support of William Yates Atkinson for Governor in 1894, and, in turn, the Lawrenceville News strongly favored Atkinson’s campaign. In late December 1894, Rucker retired from journalism to pursue a law practice, and the company elected Jeff S. Mills, a former News local editor, to the position of editor-in-chief. Mills held that role until December 1895 when R. E. McCracken and A. Charles Tilden took over management of the paper. That same year, the News reduced its subscription fee to $.75 which made it a quarter cheaper than the Gwinnett Herald. From 1895 to 1897, the News saw steady increases in subscription rates until it became the most popular sheet in Gwinnett County, and, in late December 1897, the Lawrenceville Publishing Company acquired all the assets of the Gwinnett Herald. The paper’s masthead became the News-Herald in January 1898. From 1898 to 1915, the News-Herald underwent several changes in management. At this point, the publishing company’s business method was to lease the paper and printing press out. W. G. McNelley, J. A. Bagwell, J.C. Flanigan, and C. M. Morcock each managed the News respectively. Morcock had the longest tenure as leaseholder and was associated with the paper until January 1, 1915. The News lost its legal advertising contract with Gwinnett County in 1902 when J. C. Flanigan’s newly-founded Gwinnett Journal acquired the rights. In December 1902, a fire destroyed the News’ printing offices, and, despite their competition, Flanigan opened the Journal’s press for the News until a new location could be secured. W. E. Simmons, still a stockholder of the publishing company, leased the paper to D. M. Bird and J. L. Hagood in 1915. Hagood left the paper in 1918, selling his shares to P. M. Christian, only to return in August 1921. Hagood then stayed with the paper until 1939 when Marvin A. Allison purchased all stock in the publishing company, becoming the sole owner of the paper. In February 1944, Allison ended a 42-year rivalry by purchasing the Gwinnett Journal and consolidating it under the News-Herald name. On September 13, 1965, the News-Herald became the Gwinnett Daily News under the ownership of Robert D. Fowler, a title it maintained until becoming the Daily News in 1992. In September 1992, the New York Times Company, which owned the Daily News assets by this time, ceased publication of the paper and sold its assets to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution. Today, the Gwinnett Daily Post serves as Gwinnett County’s paper of record, a role it took over after the closing of the Daily News.