Not many years were permitted to pass, after Delaware
County got out of her swaddling clothes, before the
newspaper man made his appearance "to supply a long felt
want." He came in the year 1853, in the person of Datus E. Coon, who founded the Delhi Argus at the then
county seat. Editor Coon published the Argus about one
years and then sold the paper to G. W. Field. At the
outbreak of hostilities between the northern and southern
states, Coon entered the army and rose to the rank of
brigadier-general. J. L. Noble, who handled the roller and
applied the ink to the forms of the Argus, under Coon's
regime, also went into the volunteer service and gained
the rank of captain. Field continued the editorship of the
Argus until the fall of 1856, when he gave way to Charles
F. Hobbs, who soon sustained a loss of part of his plant
by fire. Hobbs continued the paper under its old
name until 1858, when he changed it to the Delhi Democrat.
Enlarging the forms for a seven-column paper, Mr. Hobbs
gave his patrons the local and foreign news and prospered
in his endeavors to "make good." Finally Hobbs sold out to
C. L. Hayes, and later the firm name became Hayes &
Corbett, who sold to Rev. L. S. Ashbaugh. Then came Dr.
James Wright, county clerk, as part proprietor and later
J. L. McCreery purchased an interest.
On January 1,
1859, James L. Noble secured the interests of L. S. Ashbaugh in the Democrat and later transferred them to J.
L. McCreery who, now being sole owner, changed the name to
the Delaware County Journal, and continued the publication
until January, 1864, when he removed the plant to Dubuque.
In the following month of March the material was sold to
Edward Burnside, who moved it to Manchester and it became
a part of the Delaware County Union outfit.
News came into existence at Delhi in 1860 and lived about
one year. The founder and owner, Charles L. Hayes, sold
the material, which was taken to Anamosa.
DELAWARE COUNTY RECORDER
was established March 24, 1871, by J. A. Cole, as the
Earlville Sun, at Earlville. C. Sanborn purchased it in
June following, removed the plant to Delhi and named it
the Delaware County Recorder. In August, 1872, J. B. Swinburne became its owner and brought it out as the Delhi
Monitor. He continued its publication until some time in
the '80s, when it was suspended.
THE DELAWARE COUNTY UNION
Journal, at Delhi, suspended publication in the winter of
1863-64. The material was purchased by Edward Burnside,
$300 of the purchased money having been subscribed by
Manchester people, who greatly desired a newspaper. The
plant was removed to Manchester and with it the first
issue of the Delaware County Union appeared March 25,
1864. Mr. Burnside died in 1866 and in January, 1867, the
paper passed into the hands of L. L. Ayer, who enlarged
the sheet to a seven-column folio. The Union became the
official organ of the republican party, but that did not
save it from starving to death. On December 3, 1872, the
Delaware County Union gave up the ghost and the body,
being dismembered, was divided between H. L. Rann, of the
Press, and J. B. Swinburne, of the Delhi Monitor.
EARLVILLE'S DEFUNCT PAPERS
The Nottingham Observer was
started at Earlville in the spring of 1859, by Ed Stanton,
and ceased to exist six months later.
The Earlville Sun already
has been mentioned. Two other papers later were published
in Earlville and finally submitted to force of
circumstances. The Gazette was established by W. A.
Hutton, December 31, 1875, who soon sold to N. Rose & Son.
The latter changed the name to The Commercial, the first
number of which appeared May 26, 1876. In April, 1877, the
last paper was published. The Earlville Record was another
unfortunate that was born on December 19, 1877, J. V. and
J. A. Matthews being its sponsors. The Record long since
has passed away.
C. Starr Barre founded
the Earlville Graphic in 1882 and this publication
flourished under Barre's efficient editorial and
mechanical management up to 1887, when the Graphic plant
was destroyed by the fire that devastated the entire
business section of the town. It was but a few months,
however, before there was another printing office ready
and equipped for newspaper work and the new publication
was appropriately named the Earlville Phoenix. Mr. Barre
later sold the plant to Albert Knowles, who was succeeded
by a company that published the paper under the firm name
of the Phoenix Publishing Company. In 1889 the plant was
purchased of Charles E. McCannon, who was succeeded in
1890 by Miss Christie Scroggie. After two years Miss
Scroggie sold the plant to Charles A. Durne. In November,
1894, J. B. Swinburne became the owner of the plant and
The Phoenix under his management became a newspaper of
wide circulation and for a few years five papers were
printed each week at the Phoenix plant. The extra editions
were named The Colesburg Clipper, The Delhi Monitor, The
Greeley Graphic and The Worthington Watchman. In
September, 1901, R. V. Lucas, of Bradford, Iowa, purchased
the plant and successfully conducted the paper until 1905,
when he sold the business to P. M. Cloud and James Rogers.
Mr. Lucas resigned from his position as postmaster at
Earlville after disposing of the newspaper property, and
P. M. Cloud succeeded him in that position. Cloud & Rogers
secured the services of Albert Voit as Manager and editor
of The Phoenix. Mr. Rogers severed his interests in the
paper in 1907, and in 1909 Mr. Cloud sold the plant to
Albert Voit and he conducted the paper until January 1,
1914, when a partnership was formed with Arthur J. Rogers.
The plant has been refurnished, new machinery and material
added and the paper increased in size. It is well edited,
has a large circulation and is well patronized by the
THE HOME PRESS
A quite newsey,
neatly printed local paper is the Home Press, published at
Greeley. It was established March 5, 1897, by Victor E.
Dow, present owner and publisher, and is a six-column
quarto, with four pages home print.
THE RYAN REPORTER
E. E. Coakley, a
Delaware County boy, is editor and proprietor o the Ryan
Reporter, a well edited and readable weekly paper, that
gives its large list of subscribers the local and foreign
news. Mr. Coakley established his paper in one of the best
trading points in Delaware County and issued its first
number January 19, 1899. It is a six-column quarto,
with two pages home print.
The Leader, one of the
best edited and printed newspapers in Delaware County, was
established at Hopkinton in 1888. The Leader reflects the
opinions of the neighborhood, has a good patronage, and
its editor and publisher, W. S. Beels, has made a splendid
success in the journalistic field of the college town.
THE MANCHESTER PRESS
Press, the oldest paper in the county, in point of
continuous publication, was established in June, 1871, by
the late H. L. Rann, father of the present publisher. Mr.
Rann got the paper well on its feet and in 1874 sold it to
the late C. Sanborn, going to St. Louis to engage in the
job printing business. Finding the St. Louis enterprise of
doubtful value, Mr. Rann returned to Manchester after an
absence of two years and bought out Mr. Sanborn. He
continued the publication of The Press until his death in
May, 1897, when the paper came under the management of his
The Press was started as an
eight-column paper of four pages and later increased to
eight pages, four of which consisted of what was known as
the Kellogg "patent insides" service, later taken over and
developed by the Western Newspaper Union. As time went on,
the demands of the business made necessary reduction of
the ready-print pages to two, and in June, 1914, the paper
converted into a twelve-page edition of six columns to the
page, printed entirely at home.
The Press has always
endeavored to keep abreast of the times with respect to
the modernity of its equipment. It boasted the first power
press in the country, the first type-setting machine (the
Simplex), and the first linotype (the Junior). In January,
1913, the paper moved into a handsome designed home on the
corner of Main and Madison streets, a brick building
designed with especial reference to its needs and equipped
with every convenience and utility. The plant now consists
of a Model 8 linotype, a Cottrell drum cylinder, two
jobbers, Omaha folder, power cutter, and other equipment
in keeping with modern ideas. The machinery is operated by
individual motors, and the building has its own steam
With a view to further
modernizing the business The Press is one of the few
weekly newspapers of the state maintaining a thorough and
accurate cost system and a cash-in-advance system of
subscription settlements. There is not a delinquent
subscriber on its list, which is well toward the three
The Press has educated or
employed nearly all of the pioneer printers of the county,
such as Frank B. Gregg, "Joe" Thompson, "Lute" Fisk,
"Wood" Jewell, Edward Andrews, and others. For a time, in
its earliest days, it was published in quarters on the the
third floor of what is now the Globe Hotel, later removed
to offices over the A. C. Phillip pharmacy, then to the
first floor and basement of the Thorpe Building on the
corner of Main and Madison, from which location it was
definitely removed to its present location.
The Press has always been a staunch and uncompromising
republican newspaper, and particularly under the
management of the late H. L. Rann, its founder,
established a high standing for the clarity and strength
of its editorial page. It has sought to serve its people
faithfully and well, to what effect can best be judged by
those who have long given it their support and confidence.
THE MANCHESTER DEMOCRAT
The Manchester Democrat was
established and its first number was issued January 13,
1875, by F. B. Gregg, proprietor and publisher. L. L.
Ayers was editor. Politically the paper was democrat and
has so remained ever since. After a few months Mr. Gregg
retired and the paper passed into the hands of the
Democrat Publishing Company, a corporation, of which the
late Nixon Denton was president, and E. M. Carr,
secretary. This company continued the publication of the
paper until the 3d day of July, 1878. L. L. Ayers
continued as editor until the 17th of April, 1878, from
which date until the 3d of the following July it was
edited and published by the Democrat Publishing Company.
The late Charles E. Bronson and E. M. Carr became sole
owners of the newspaper and dissolved the corporation, and
the firm of Bronson & Carr commenced the publication of
the Manchester Democrat on July 10, 1878, and continued to
publish and edit the paper until March 22, 1905, when the
partnership was enlarged by Hubert Carr and Henry Bronson
becoming members of the firm, and thereafter and until the
death of the senior member, which took place on the 18th
day of November, 1908, the newspaper was published and
edited by the firm of Bronson, Carr & Sons.
After Mr. Bronson's death
the newspaper was published and edited by the firm of
Carr, Bronson & Carr, a co-partnership of E. M. Carr,
Henry Bronson and Hubert Carr, until the 24th day of
October, 1912, when Henry Bronson sold his interest in the
paper to Wade E. Long and Fred W. Herman*, and since that
date the newspaper has been published and edited by the
firm of Carr, Carr, Long & Herman, a co-partnership
consisting of W. M. Carr, Hubert Carr, Wade E. Long and
Fred W. Herman*.
The publishers of the
Democrat during all the years of its existence have
strived to make it a clean, reliable newspaper; a paper
that would not contain anything that could not with
propriety be read in any company; a paper that would not
contain anything that any man would not willing for his
wife and children to read. The paper has at all times
enjoyed a good patronage and it has been a financial
success. It is now one of the best country newspapers in
DELHI PRODUCES AN IMMORTAL
With her many ups and downs, Delhi, first seat of justice
of Delaware County, still glories in that intangible
treasure, Fame. Lost to her is the erstwhile proud
eminence as a county seat and no longer remains to her the
prized privilege of entertaining judges, lawyers and
disputatious litigants. Her capital building remains
standing, silent and alone, in its beautiful park; but its
walls echo no longer forensic speech of jurist or
counselor. The days for all such have passed away and now
the historic pile is headquarters for a fast dwindling
remnant of the Union's defenders in the Civil war. But,
Delhi is proud of her past and still retains an
illustrious position in history, for in her younger days a
poet was given to the place, whose one sweet song
preserved, will live down in the ages. The writer of the
poem which follows, the late J. L. McCreery, was a
resident of Delhi from 1861 to 1865 and edited the Journal
during that period of time. He then went to Dubuque and
attached himself to the Times of that city. McCreery was a
man of more than ordinary accomplishments and was rather
versatile in natural abilities. The poem "There Is No
Death," was written while he was doing newspaper work in
Delhi in an humble way. It received instant
attention and was generously copied by publications in
this country and in Europe. The authorship was given to
many, among whom was the great classic, Lord Lytton of
England. It might be here, among whom was parenthesis,
that Mr. McCreery was also superintendent of schools when
he gave to the world the beautiful words preserved in the
lines below. He is the author, and the compiler of this
history only renders him due credit by preserving the poem
for future generations to this volume:
THERE IS NO DEATH
There is no death! the
stars go down
To rise upon some other shore,
And bright in heaven's
They shine for evermore.
There is no death! the
Convert to life the viewless air
The rocks disorganize
The hungry moss they bear.
There is no death! the
dust we tread
Shall change, beneath the summer showers
To golden grain, or
Or rain tinted flowers.
There is no death! the
leaves may fall
The flowers may fade and pass away--
They only wait,
through wintry hours,
The warm, sweet breath of May.
There is no death! the
That heaven hath kindly lent to earth
Are ever first to seek
The country of their birth
And all things that
for growth or joy
Are worthy of our love or care,
Whose loss has left us
Are safely garnered there.
Though life become a
We know its fairest, sweetest flowers,
Adorn immortal bowers.
There is no death!
although we grieve
When beautiful familiar forms
That we have learned
to love are torn
From our embracing arms.
Although with bowed
and breaking heart,
With sable garb and silent thread,
We bear their
senseless dust to rest,
And say that they are "dead."
They are not dead!
they have but passed
Beyond the mists that blind us here
Into the new and
Of that serener sphere.
They have but dropped
their robe of clay
To put their shining raiment on;
They have not wandered
They are not "lost" or "gone."
They still are here and love us yet;
The dear ones they
have left behind
They never can forget.
And sometimes when our
hearts grow faint,
Amid temptations fierce and deep,
Or when the wildly
Of grief or passion sweep,
We feel upon our
Their gentle touch, their breath of
Their arms enfold us
and our hearts
Grow comforted and calm.
And ever near us,
The dear, immortal spirits tread;
For all the boundless
Is life ------ "there are no dead."