Newspapers:  [From Goodspeed 1889]

The Texas County Pioneer was established in 1867, and in the following year entered on regular publication, with the erratic "Uncle Ben" in charge.  The history of the early newspapers of Texas and adjoining counties is so closely connected with this wandering printer a brief sketch of his family, himself, and of his connection with newspaper work is given as follows: Ben. C. Lowell was born at Salisbury, Mass., June 22, 1824.  His father, John, and mother, Hannah Morrill, were born there.  John was the son of Simeon Lowell, who was the grandson of the Lowells who came from the North of Ireland to Philadelphia.  John Lowell died in 1825, and Hannah (Morrill) Lowell in 1860; her ancestors also came from Ireland.  Uncle Ben attended common schools in New Hampshire, and later the Hampton Falls Academy.  In 1842 he entered the Balm of Gilead office at Concord; in 1844 entered the Herald of Freedom office, and in 1845 began his travels from one office to another, among them the office at Salisbury.  In 1846 he taught school at Seabrook, N. H., and in 1847 engaged in sundry affairs at Boston, then went south and studied Sam. Thompson's botanic system of medicine; next resumed printing at Baltimore.  In 1847 he printed a Mexican war song book, and published a memoir of Daniel O'Connell, and the same year began his travels westward, spending some years at Cincinnati and New Orleans.  In 1855 he came to St. Louis, and resided there until December, 1867, when he came to Houston, being sent to take charge of the Pioneer office, which was started that summer by the Missouri Printing Company, Ellis Evans, of Cuba, and Horace Wilcox being among the members.  The office was stored away until January, 1868, when it was re-established over G. F. Millard's store.  After the issue of five or six numbers the company sold to Barricklow, who removed the office to Salem, MO.  After its removal John T. Lynch, W. G. Crow, John H. Steffens, Dr. J. W. Mires and others determined to have a paper, purchased the office, and in April, 1868, placed Uncle Ben in charge.  That year he accepted their offer of $110 per $100 share for their interest, and became owner.  In April, 1875, he ceased publication, and in April, 1876, he moved to Ava, where he published the Record for some time, and moving to Hartville established the Home Talk, which passed into the hands of Coleman and Frazier, since which time he has worked at the case and dealt in real estate.  In July, 1853, he married Mrs. Caroline Wright, who died in 1861.  The Houston Democrat, No. 17, Vol. IV, bears date April 26, 1877, P. Barricklow being editor.  This paper was established by Kager & Walters, who sold to Barricklow & Steep.  They sold the office to Durham, by whom it was moved to Mountain Grove.  The Democrat was first issued in March, 1873.

The Houston Herald was first issued October 11, 1878, by the Herald Publishing Company, of which J. H. Steffens was manager.  The editors were C. M. Ross and J. T. White, while other members of the company had also a share in editorial work.  In the salutatory they speak of the fathers of the Revolution, and confess their belief in the United States being able to produce such men were such circumstances to call them forth.  The members included those named above, with T. N. Bradford, A. D. Frink, A. Jadwin, F. M. Geiger, J. W. Price, John H. Johnston, J. M. Keith, T. F. Nicholas, E. H. Wheeler, R. T. Foard, E. W. Wilson, M. C. Brown, W. P. Dunlap, George Paulding, R. Y. Smyley and A. Fansler.  This company gave a note for $500, and sent T. N. Bradford to St. Louis to purchase material, and within a week the Herald office was opened.  After Steffens' death, in 1879, C. M. Ross became editor and manager, with R. T. Foard, assistant.  In 1882 the office was leased to B. Ross and W. B. Guire, who carried it on until 1884, when the office was sold to Leets & Co., who conducted the paper for a few months, when the property was purchased by C. M. Ross & Sons and in 1885 B. Ross purchased the Herald, and conducted it until purchased by Col. Lyles, of Salem, in January, 1889.  In November, 1881, the manager reported receipt of $1,392 from tax publications and fees; in 1885 Ross & Guire received $1,500 for similar publications; in 1887 $2,600; and in 1889, $2,000.

The Licking Ledger was published in 1878-79 by Jesse Matthews, who moved to Salem, and thence to Salem, Ark., where he is now engaged in newspaper publication.

The Texas County Pioneer (souvenir) was published July 4, 1887, while in the procession of that day.  The Cabool Record, the pioneer journal of that town, was founded September 23, 1884, by T. L. Moore, formerly of the Charleston, MO Gazette, who has conducted the Record as an independent journal since that time.  The circulation is 600, the office giving employment to two men.

 © 01-28-01
Debbie Linton and Penny Harrell

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