The Rome tribune. (Rome, Ga.) 1???-190?
Place of Publication:
- Rome, Floyd county
Dates of publication:
- Floyd County (Ga.)--Newspapers.
- Georgia--Floyd County.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01213151
- Also on microfilm: Athens, Ga. : University of Georgia Libraries.
- Description based on: Oct. 29, 1896.
- Latest issue consulted: Dec. 29, 1906.
- Merged with: Rome tribune (Rome, Ga. : Daily), and: Rome herald (Rome, Ga.), to form: Rome tribune-herald.
The Rome tribune. January 25, 1900
In September 1887, the newly-formed Tribune Publishing Company purchased the ‘good will and subscription list’ of the Rome daily and weekly Courier from publisher W. H. Hidell. The Courier, which had circulated since 1843, became the Tribune of Rome with its first issue in October 1887. John Temple Graves, an increasingly popular southern writer and orator, became the paper’s managing editor while A. Brooks served as business manager and Houston R. Harper as local news editor. The Tribune of Rome continued the daily morning circulation schedule of the Courier, but did not publish weekly and Sunday editions until the early 1890s. By December 1887, the four-page Democratic daily expanded to eight pages. In early-September 1890, citing political differences between himself and company shareholders, Graves resigned as editor-in-chief. According to the Columbus Enquirer-Sun of September 6, 1890, editor Graves supported conservative Bourbon Democrats in the contentious seventh congressional district of 1890 while ‘a majority of the Tribune’s directors and shareholders, and of the citizens of Rome, favor[ed] Felton.’ Following Graves’ departure, John J. Seay, owner of the White Star steamboat line in Rome, purchased a majority stake in the Tribune and appointed assistant editor J. L. Martin as managing editor. Martin served as lead editor for less than a year, but the Tribune became a vocal supporter of Independent Democrat William J. Felton under his editorship. Between 1890 and 1894, the paper’s editorial department experienced several changes until W. A. Knowles took over as managing editor in November 1894, and he went on to edit the Tribune for nearly ten years. The popular poet Montgomery Folsom, an informal student of Henry W. Grady and Joel Chandler Harris, and contributor to the Atlanta Constitution, joined the Tribune alongside Knowles. In 1895, the Tribune’s rivalry with Rome’s evening daily, the Hustler of Rome, intensified when the Hustler acquired legal advertising rights from the State. This rivalry came to a head in September and October 1895 when W. A. Knowles criticized Hustler editor Phillip (‘Phil’) G. Byrd’s recent firing of an employee, and rumors began circulating the two editors would engage in a duel. The rumors of a duel were never realized, however, perhaps in part because W. A. Knowles refused to receive messages sent by Byrd. In February 1903, the Rome Tribune again experienced a change in ownership when prominent Rome state representative J. Lindsay Johnson bought out J. P. Cooper and became majority shareholder. By this time, the staff of the Rome Tribune included W. A. Knowles (president and general manager), Houston Harper (associate editor), John Seay (city editor), and Mrs. Beaulah Mosely (society editor). Johnson presided over the Tribune’s growth into Rome’s preeminent paper when it absorbed the Rome Herald in 1908 and became Rome’s largest-circulating newspaper as the Rome Tribune-Herald. Following Mr. Lindsay’s death in the Philippines, his wife, Mrs. Annie E. Johnson, assumed management of the paper for a year. In July 1923, the Rome Tribune-Herald again absorbed a competitor when it merged with the Rome News to form the Rome News-Tribune. In 1928, B. H. Mooney and William S. Mudd purchased the paper, and they were co-owners until Mudd’s death in 1942. The Mooney Family, owners of the News Publishing Company, managed the Rome News-Tribune until 2015 when the Marietta Daily Journal became the paper’s parent company. Today, the Rome News-Tribune continues to circulate and serves as Floyd County’s legal organ.