The News Media and the Making of America, 1730-1865

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The rapid expansion of new modes of transportation and communication technology that increasingly connected the American states is evident in this 1856 Disturnell’s New Map of the United States and Canada. Drawn by Henry A. Burr, the…

The Boston News-Letter was the first newspaper in America to survive beyond its first issue. Indeed, it survived for seventy-two years as a fixture of the Boston publishing scene. The founding editor and publisher was John Campbell (1653-1728), who…

In colonial America, newspapers were delivered to their readers in a variety of ways. In the cities, customers often picked up their papers at the printing office. In the countryside, post riders delivered newspapers. Having free access to the postal…

While big dailies were beginning to dominate the newspaper markets of the urban centers in the first half of the nineteenth century, smaller newspapers began to pop up in more rural areas. These small local papers carried news from around the…

As veterans of the Bible and religious tract movements, the founders of the American Anti-Slavery Society (AASS) believed in the power of the printed word to convert sinners, including those whose sin was slaveholding. Immediately after its founding…

Although breaking news usually appeared on the interior of colonial newspapers as that side of the paper was generally printed last, this copy of the New-Hampshire Gazette—published by Daniel Fowle (ca. 1715-87)—leads with a front-page…

The first newspaper to appear in America outside Boston was the American Weekly Mercury, launched by Andrew Bradford (1686-1742) in Philadelphia in 1719. His father, William Bradford (1663-1752), had opened the first print shop in the new city of…