About The Taney County republican. (Forsyth, Mo.) 1895-1992
Forsyth, Mo. (1895-1992)
- The Taney County republican. : (Forsyth, Mo.) 1895-1992
- Place of publication:
- Forsyth, Mo.
- Geographic coverage:
- Price & Williams
- Dates of publication:
- Vol. 1, no. 1 (Nov. 28, 1895)-v. 97, no. 40 (Apr. 29, 1992).
- Merged with: Branson beacon and White River leader, and: Southwest Missourian, to form: Branson tri-lakes daily news.
- sn 89067390
- Succeeding Titles:
- View complete holdings information
- First Issue Last Issue
The Taney County Republican
November 28, 1895, marked the inaugural issue of The Taney County Republican in Forsyth, Missouri, the brainchild of the Taney County Prosecuting Attorney, Benjamin B. Price, and the Taney County Collector, Samuel J. Williams. They published the weekly four-page paper each Thursday. Price and Williams had bought out the Taney County Star, the only competing Republican newspaper in the county at the time. In their first editorial Price and Williams declared:
…the time has come for the appearance of a Republican paper at the
county seat of Taney County. They have acquired control of the Taney County
Star and have merged it in this enterprise being fully convinced that two
newspapers could not hope to prosper in Forsyth……… As far as Republican
politics are concerned The Taney County Republican will serve no faction and no favorites….
Forsyth was a small river town near the border with Arkansas. At this time, Forsyth resembled a Wild West town, with a history of rabblerousing and unrest. During the Civil War, Forsyth was completed destroyed by the Union Army, and in the mid-1880s, Taney County’s infamous Citizen Committee for Law and Order (known as Baldknobbers) was formed. A Republican organization concerned with the corruption among Taney County’s officeholders, the Baldknobbers ostensibly opposed vigilantism, but were themselves associated with hostilities, gunfights, and the mysterious destruction by fire of the courthouse in Forsyth. The Chariton Courier reported in 1892 that “the town of Forsyth is 50 years old, but does not contain a single church and never did.”
It was in this atmosphere, that Price and Williams decided to launch the Taney County Republican in 1895. Before a year had passed, however, Price sold his share of the paper to Williams. Lawrence Carroll served as editor of the Republican from the beginning, but left after one year, handing over the editorship to Thomas Edwards Phillips, a man with legal training and newspaper experience.
In 1901, W. H. Price became both editor and publisher of the Republican, and he held these positions until the late 1910s, when he sold the paper to Frank F. Baily. Among the journalists who wrote for the Republican was Mary Elizabeth Prather Mahnkey, who began her career with the newspaper at the age of 14 and who, years later, in 1935, was judged the best rural newspaper correspondent in the United States in a contest sponsored by Country Home magazine.
The Taney County Republican continued its weekly format until 1992, when it merged with the Branson Beacon and White River Leader and Southwest Missourian to form the Branson Tri-Lakes Daily News, which published until 2009.
Provided by: State Historical Society of Missouri; Columbia, MO