About The champion. (Arcadia, Fla.) 1895-1911
Arcadia, Fla. (1895-1911)
- The champion. : (Arcadia, Fla.) 1895-1911
- Place of publication:
- Arcadia, Fla.
- Geographic coverage:
- T.E. & Royal B. Child
- Dates of publication:
- Began in 1895; ceased in Dec. 1911.
- Arcadia (Fla.)--Newspapers.
- Bowling Green (Fla.)--Newspapers.
- De Soto County (Fla.)--Newspapers.
- Archived issues are available as part of the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
- Description based on: Vol. 12, no. 1 (Jan. 4, 1906).
- Editor: Mrs. Neva C. Child, <1906-1908>
- Latest issue consulted: Vol. 14, no. 52 (Dec. 31, 1908).
- Published at: Bowling Green, Fla. <1895>; and at: Arcadia, Fla., <1906-1908>
- Published weekly by T.E. and Royal B. Child, the Champion [LCCN: sn95047227] originally published in Bowling Green, Florida, starting in 1894 by Mrs. Neva Chase Child. In 1895, however, the newspaper offices were moved to Arcadia, Florida. During the economic panic of 1892, Mrs. Child (1850- ), an Illinois native, moved to Florida from Colorado with her husband, a rancher. Mrs. Child had previously published newspapers in Colorado. In its October 18, 1896 issue, the Florida Times Union (Jacksonville, FL) [LCCN 95026757] reported "There are not many women editors in Florida, but Mrs. Childs [sic] ranks with the best weekly paper publishers in the state of either sex. She is a thorough business woman and an able writer. The paper is independent in politics, four page, six column, weekly issued every Thursday, $1 a year." The Champion was one of several early newspapers in DeSoto County, Florida. In 1887, this large inland county in southern Florida was partitioned from Manatee County (FL) and then covered 3,750 square miles, an area the size of the state of Rhode Island. DeSoto County was further partitioned into five separate counties in 1921. Arcadia was and still is the seat of DeSoto County. Bowling Green is now in Hardee County. The Champion, which documents early life in inland southern Florida, ceased publication in 1911. The Tampa (FL) Morning Tribune [LCCN sn95047477], writing in tribute to the Champion in its January 10, 1909 article "Arcadia Champion, Popular Paper", implied the causes for its demise. "Through the efforts of the Champion," it reported, " ... the Tribune was able to make the success of this edition of [the Tribune's] DeSoto [edition] which it has." The Tribune survives as one of Florida's most widely read newspapers. Then, as now, Arcadia's local economy and much of the Champion's reporting was on agriculture. Land use, at the time, had been opened up by the expansion of the railroads and by environmental controls designed to make Florida useful agriculturally productive to feed the nation and especially a growing tourism industry along Florida's Atlantic coast, also spurred on by the deep reach of the railroads into Florida. The Champion was continued by the Enterprise [LCCN: sn95047228], published weekly in Arcadia by T.B. Hartig. In turn, the Enterprise was continued by the Arcadia Enterprise [LCCN: sn95047229]. --E. Kesse, University of Florida Digital Library Center.
- sn 95047227
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Founded in 1894 by Neva Chase Child and published by T.E. and Royal B. Child, the Champion was published in Bowling Green. Child, a native of Illinois, had moved with her rancher husband to Florida during the Panic of 1893. Before that time she had published newspapers in Colorado. In 1895, the offices of the Champion were moved from Bowling Green to Arcadia. In its October 18, 1896 issue, the Florida Union of Jacksonville reported: “There are not many women editors in Florida, but Mrs. Childs (sic) ranks with the best weekly paper publishers in the state of either sex. She is a thorough business woman and an able writer. The paper is independent in politics, four page, six column, weekly issued every Thursday, $1 a year.”
The Champion was one of several early newspapers in DeSoto County, a large inland area in southern Florida that would later be partitioned into five separate counties. Arcadia was and still is the seat of DeSoto County; Bowling Green is now located in Hardee County.
The Champion documented early life in the region. Then, as now, Arcadia’s local economy and much of the Champion’s reporting centered on agriculture. At the turn of the century, this part of Florida saw the rapid expansion of railroads, the development of agriculture, and the growth of tourist industry along the Atlantic coast.
The Champion ceased publication in 1911 and was succeeded in turn by the Enterprise and the Arcadia Enterprise. The Tampa Morning Tribune, writing in tribute to the Champion in its January 10, 1909, article “Arcadia Champion, Popular Paper,” may have anticipated the causes for its demise. “Through the efforts of the Champion,” it reported, “the Tribune was able to make the success of this edition of [the Tribune’s] DeSoto [edition] which it has.” Having built on the foundation laid by the Champion, the Tampa Morning Tribune survives as one of Florida’s most widely read newspapers.
Provided by: University of Florida