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Title:
The Lake County times. : (Hammond, Ind.) 1906-1933
Place of publication:
Hammond, Ind.
Geographic coverage:
  • Hammond, Lake, Indiana  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Publisher:
Lake County Print. and Pub. Co.
Dates of publication:
1906-1933
Description:
  • Vol. 1, no. 1 (June 18, 1906)-v. 28, no. 59 (Aug. 26, 1933).
Frequency:
Daily (except Sun.)
Language:
  • English
Notes:
  • "Sat. and weekly ed.," Feb. 4, 1911- ; has numbering system independent of daily, Feb. 11, 1911-<Aug. 29, 1931>.
  • Contents almost identical with: The Gary evening times, The Times (East Chicago, Ind.), The Lake County times, <Mar. 15, 1928>-1933, The Calumet City times <Mar. 15, 1928>-1933, and: The Whiting evening times, Apr. 2, 1928-1933.
LCCN:
sn 86058242
OCLC:
15306883
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The Lake County times. June 18, 1906, Image 1

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The Lake County Times

Sidmon McHie (1863-1944), a wealthy Chicago grain and stock broker, purchased the Hammond Daily Tribune in 1906, with the intention of promoting the young industries and businesses of Lake County, Indiana. Not content with marketing the news only to Hammond, he changed the paper's name to the Lake County Times and pushed sales in neighboring towns. The energetic new owner used the paper to "get Hammond to believe in itself," as described in a 1943 tribute. Consequently, the daily's circulation, which stood at just 137 when McHie bought it in 1906, jumped to almost 5,000 within a year and nearly exceeded 10,000 in 1920, when Lake County's population stood at 82,000. As an investment scheme, McHie circulated many free copies to promote the city. By 1943, the paper was reaching 130,000 readers.

McHie hired Chicago sportswriter Hugh E. Keough to be the Lake County Times's first editor. Best known for his sports column ("In the Wake of the News") in the Chicago Daily Tribune, Keough's tenure on the Lake County Times was short-lived, and Percy A. Parry soon replaced him, guiding the Lake County Times - renamed the Hammond Times in August 1933 - for over 30 years until his death in 1938.

With McHie and Parry at the helm, the Lake County Times became a flamboyant paper with strong sales. Although not known for its deep investigative journalism, front-page stories in the 1910s and 1920s provide insight into the social issues of that age - from the scandalous rise in American divorce rates to labor struggles in the Calumet's burgeoning steel mills. The Lake County Times wasn't particularly friendly to the labor movement or to socialism, and during the lead-up to America's entry into World War I it heartily joined in the vilification of Germany. The paper also helped stoke public fear during the 1919 "Red Scare," which involved a crackdown by U.S. Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer on radicals and immigrants from Southern and Eastern Europe, whose politics were suspect in the wake of the Russian Revolution and a wave of anarchist bomb plots. Nearby Gary, Indiana, which saw a great steel strike in 1919 and was home to thousands of Eastern Europeans, was deeply affected.

During the 1920s, the Lake County Times published colorful, if brief, stories emblematic of the Jazz Age's rejection of Victorian social norms. Divorcées, flappers, and tragic heartbreaks worthy of an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel often sprawled across the front page.

Publisher Sidmon McHie died in 1944 at age 81, from injuries sustained after being hit by a train while driving his car. His nephew, James S. DeLaurier, took control of the Hammond Times. In 1967, the Times dropped Hammond from its name and began representing all of northwestern Indiana. It moved its offices to Munster in 1989. Today, the Times  is the second-largest newspaper in the state, ranking only behind the Indianapolis Star. Local editions cover Munster, Crown Point, and Valparaiso.

Provided by: Indiana State Library