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The St. Louis Republic
The St. Louis Republic was published daily by George Knapp and Co. between 1888 and 1919. Its weekday editions consistently featured reports on local, national, and international politics; local or statewide criminal investigations; society news; financial news (particularly reports on the price of grain and local markets); classifieds, marriages and deaths; and editorials. Its Saturday edition typically consisted of two news sections with longer articles, poetry or fiction. Sunday editions included three or more news sections, a comics section, and a magazine featuring society news and events, literature reviews and excerpts, and articles about travel and culture. Beginning in 1903, the Sunday Republic combined the fashion and advice columns into a four-page “Women’s Magazine.” Monday editions also printed sermons from local Christian religious services. The paper averaged 15 pages during the week, with Sunday editions sometimes exceeding 80 pages, including the 20-page magazine. After 1912, however, the Republic failed to make a profit, and it was sold in 1919 to the St. Louis Globe-Democrat.
The St. Louis Republic strongly supported preparations for the 1904 World’s Fair held in the city. In an April 7, 1901, editorial entitled “World’s Fair City,” the Republic wrote: “Loyal citizens contemplate the indicated developments of the next four years with a feeling of intense pride in the reasonable certainty of St. Louis’ tremendous advancements in the scale of American cities.” The Republic furthermore explicitly supported efforts by the city of St. Louis to fund projects devoted to the fair: “The harmonious organization of the municipal government, in its relations to the World’s Fair, creates and places in motion a co-operative engine of irresistible potency for the good of St. Louis.”
The St. Louis Republic typically supported the Democratic Party and its candidates and often heavily criticized both the Republican Party and Republican-leaning St. Louis Globe-Democrat. In an April 4, 1901 editorial, the Republic stated that “The Republican Party has drifted so far away from American principles that the revolt of the people will be overwhelming with the forces naturally Democratic are found acting together.” The Republic took a strong stance against trusts and protectionist tariffs and generally supported union activity, although opposing strikes involving a breach of contract by workers (June 23, 1902). Sunday editorials usually featured nationally syndicated columnists. Editorials also discussed international events and were often critical of the policies of the Theodore Roosevelt administration. Throughout 1900 and 1901, cartoonist Ryan Walker created weekday political cartoons as well as weekend comic strips, as well as the Republic’s first color comic strips. Though Walker drew politically satirical cartoons for the front page of the Republic, he also provided lighthearted, whimsical strips such as “The Automopig Family.”
Provided by: State Historical Society of Missouri; Columbia, MO