Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859–2000

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Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859–2000
Series Title:
Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859–2000
Ray, Garret
Place of Publication:
Denver, CO
Center for Colorado and the West
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Auraria Library
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Auraria Library
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.


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Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859 | Center for Colorado & the West at Auraria Library[12/7/2015 3:11:58 PM] Home Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859Submitted by CLEAVITT on 4-6-2015 08:31 PMAuthor: Jane C. Harper, Craig W. Leavitt, and Thomas J. Noel Publishing: Colorado Newspapers: A History & Inventory: 1859-2000 By Jane C. Harper, Craig W. Leavitt, and Thomas J. Noel. Westminster, CO: The Colorado Press Association Foundation and Center for Colorado & the West at Auraria Library, 2014. Black-and-white photographs. Illustrations. 432 pages. 9 x 9. $49.95 paperback. Reviewer: Garret RayIn 1978, the board of the Colorado Press Association (CPA) agreed that someone ought to write a history of the association to mark the CPAs one hundredth birthday. Marshall Sprague, a respected and prominent Colorado author, was invited to write the history. He decided he wasnt interested. Given the tortuous history of the idea over the next several decades, Sprague made a wise decision. But he suggested a young, ambitious writer who had worked with him on some now-forgotten project. Later that year, the board agreed to hire the young man.During the next year, the would-be author interviewed many Colorado newspaper editors, producing literally a ream of typewritten interview notes, including his own opinions on newspapers, editors, and life in general. Occasionally, he would show up at my office at the Littleton Independent to report on why the EXPLORE BY MEDIABook Reviews Photographs Video Biographies New Publications Resource Guides County Newspaper HistoriesEXPLORE BY TOPICLand & Natural Resources Government & Law Agriculture Mining Commerce & Industry Transportation People & Places Communication Healthcare & Medicine Education & Libraries Cultural Communities Recreation & Entertainment Tourism ReligionEXPLORE BY CULTUREHispanic Native AmericanWithin Colorado boundaries are lands once claimed by Spanish kings and Mexican governors.


Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859 | Center for Colorado & the West at Auraria Library[12/7/2015 3:11:58 PM] Auraria Library 1100 Lawrence Street In the News manuscript seemed to be proceeding so slowly. Then, telling me that he needed some solitude to rethink his project, he left for France and disappeared, taking with him the notesas well as the advance money from the press association. I thought that was the end of the proposed history. But ten years later, Jane C. Harper of the CPA staff adopted the project. She began collecting documents and notes, squirreling them away in boxes in the basement of the CPA building. Colorado publisher Robert F. Sweeneys persistence kept the project alive, and Wilbur Flachman of the Publishing House honored his early commitment to produce and print the book at his own expense. It has now been published as Colorado Newspapers: A History and Inventory, 1859 2000 Although the history is organized county by countya potentially dull collection of ancient dates and forgotten namesit is not just a useful tool for historians. It is also far more interesting than I would have expected. Even a brief prowl through the more than four hundred pages produces anecdotes about the early days of Colorado newspapering. (Is Wheatridge one word or two? It seems to depend entirely on who wields the paint brush, The Denver Post noted. Aspen was the third largest city in the state in 1884. The first name of the gold-mining settlement of Ashcroft was Chloride. The Japanese relocation camp of Amache functioned as a medium-sized city from its founding in 1942 until the end of World War II.) The book properly carries three names as authorsfirst, of course, the late Jane Harper. Then Craig W. Leavitt, a University of Colorado Denver masters degree candidate, who pared Harpers 700,000-word manuscript to about 275,000 words, fact-checked it, filled gaps, and contributed his own insights. Finally, Thomas J. Dr. Colorado Noel, prominent professor of history at the University of Colorado Denver and our states best known historian. Noel not only recruited Leavitt, but also did some of his own editing and factchecking. Essays by Leavitt and Noel are worth reading for their own lively perspectives on Colorado journalism. Noel notes that the book is the first attempt to describe every last Colorado newspaper published before roughly 2000, adding that sadly, an estimated ninety percent of all Colorado newspapers have completely disappeared. This book helps fill that knowledge gap, and historians will appreciate it. As a Colorado native who worked for more than two decades on local newspapers, I am surely not the only small-town Colorado journalist who will be grateful for the work and affection poured into this book by Jane Harper and what turned out to be a remarkable team. Reviewer Info: Garrett Ray became a journalist at age eleven and never broke the habit. During three childhood summers, Ray published The Neighborhood News in Greeley. He majored in journalism at the University of Colorado, where he edited the Colorado Daily In 1961 he became a reporter on the Littleton Independent eventually becoming co-owner of the newspaper. He served as president of the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors, the Colorado Press Association, and the Colorado chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He has received many awards, including being named to the Denver Press Club hall of fame in 2013. After selling the Independent Ray joined the journalism faculty at Colorado State University, retiring in 2001. He holds BA and MA journalism degrees from the University of Colorado and a PhD from the University of Cardiff, Wales.