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

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  • Tags: Benjamin Franklin

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Throughout the colonial period, almanacs were the best-selling product of the American press. The almanac was one of the first imprints of the Cambridge Press—the first press in British North America—in the 1640s; by the 1760s tens of…

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Biographers and historians agree that Benjamin Franklin (1706-90) was the best journalist in colonial America and his Pennsylvania Gazette the best newspaper. Founded in 1728, the Gazette was the second newspaper to be produced in Philadelphia. In…

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The first newspaper in New York was the New-York Gazette, founded in 1725 by William Bradford (1663-1752). The New-York Weekly Journal appeared eight years later, and from its beginning it was more than a business competitor to the Gazette; it was a…

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The New England Weekly Journal was founded in 1727 as a literary paper, along the lines of the Spectator in London and New England Courant in Boston, the newspaper that launched the career of Benjamin Franklin. But the Weekly Journal was more aligned…

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The Continental Congress charged five men with the responsibility to commit to paper the American colonies’ Declaration of Independence from Britain: Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), Benjamin Franklin (1706-90), John Adams (1735-1826), Robert…

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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…
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