Newspapers’ Fascinating History

Clenton Wilson, Writer

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The newspaper, a public information media, informs readers about intelligent and insightful facts, interesting and engrossing events, and crisp and sparkling opinions around the world. Without it, people lack insight on specific subjects and news, such as politics or current events.

Compatible with freedom, the newspaper developed in the 17th century as liberal and simple information sheets for businessmen. By the early 19th century, many cities in Europe and North and South America had published newspapers with growing readerships.

Rather than adding elusive, poorly written articles, the modern newspaper ensues from European ones by expanding new columns and adding notable features. The oldest newspapers’ direct ancestors existed as the handwritten news sheets that circulated widely in Venice, Italy as early as 1566.

These weekly news sheets contained information about wars and politics in Italy and other European countries. The first newspapers printed and published weekly began in Germany in 1609. Typically, the newspapers endured intense, government censure and undeserved strictures, reporting only foreign news and current commodity prices.

The Times and British Daily,  national newspapers, originated in London. The latter began in 1785 under the name The Daily Universal Register, adopting its current name on January 1788. The Times and its sister paper, The Sunday Times formed from the company, Times Newspapers.

Like their European counterparts, early American colonies printed news sheets. The first American news sheet came from Mexico in 1541 and described an earthquake in Guatemala.

The first multi-page American newspaper in 1690 called Public Occurrences, reporting both foreign and domestic news, appeared in Boston, Massachusetts. The publisher, Benjamin Harris, included political criticisms in his work causing the local government to suppress and destroy all known copies of his newspaper.

In 1704, postmaster John Campbell published the Boston News-Letter, and it originated as the first successful newspaper in America. Unlike Harris, Campbell engaged in no political discussion, and authorities approbated it, avoiding colonial authority censorship.

Not with unknown obscurity, but with flagging popularity, newspapers accelerated their progress during the 1800s and 1900s, and they now have integrated as part of Western culture. With internet development, most newspapers have moved to online versions, while curtailing their print ones.

The newspaper: furthering history, while writing history!

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