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State journal & flag. [volume] : (Tuscaloosa, Ala.) 1843-1846
Alternative Titles:
  • State journal & flag of the union <Dec. 1, 1843->
  • State journal and flag
  • State journal and flag of the union
Place of publication:
Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Geographic coverage:
  • Tuscaloosa, Tuscaloosa, Alabama  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
J. McCormick
Dates of publication:
  • -new ser., v. 4, no. 6 (Dec. 25, 1846).
  • Began Nov. 8, 1843.
  • English
  • Alabama--Tuscaloosa County.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01209304
  • Alabama--Tuscaloosa.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01206929
  • Tuscaloosa (Ala.)--Newspapers.
  • Tuscaloosa County (Ala.)--Newspapers.
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Available on microfilm from the Library of Congress, Photoduplication Service.
  • Description based on: Vol. 1, no. 2 (Dec. 1, 1843).
  • Merged with: Montgomery advertiser (Montgomery, Ala. : Weekly), to form: Weekly flag & advertiser, and: Tri-weekly flag & advertiser.
  • Merger of: State journal (Tuscaloosa, Ala.), and: Flag of the union (Tuscaloosa, Ala.).
sn 82014375
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State journal & flag. [volume] March 20, 1846 , Image 1


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State Journal & Flag

The State Journal & Flag of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, was created in November 1843 from a merger of the Flag of the Union and the State Journal. Published weekly by the state printers and edited by John McCormick, it was in a prime position to chronicle the last years of Tuscaloosa's tenure as state capital. Though the town was the home of the state university and was located centrally, it was by no means the heart of Alabama. The removal of the Creek tribe of Native Americans in the 1830s had opened up territory in the east for white settlement, and the agricultural Black Belt region to the south had become the focal point of much of the state's wealth.

As the organ of the state government, the State Journal & Flag devoted its pages to recording activities in Congress and the Supreme Court and reprinting laws, judgments, and political speeches. Like most newspapers of the day, it also reprinted or summarized news and editorials from other papers. It featured a range of advertisements for goods and services, especially for food, dry goods, and medical treatments. Notices were also common for the opening of law practices and schools, meetings of fraternal organizations such as the Freemasons, and new goods received by merchants, including new volumes in stock at a local bookseller. On October 2, 1846, the brand-new art of photography was advertised in the form of the traveling Daguerrian Gallery set up in rooms above a local drugstore, providing "the most favorable opportunity to obtain Miniature Likenesses." Many notices are related to the economy of slavery dominating the region, especially rewards to recover enslaved people who had escaped and notices of others who had been found and were being held in jail, as well as advertisements for slave traders and auctions.

The State Journal & Flag was a Democratic newspaper, deeply anti-Whig. This is especially clear in its coverage of the Mexican-American War, which began in April 1846 to maintain control of Texas after its annexation in 1845. Whigs did not support the war because they were generally not in favor of territorial expansion—and for many of them, this case was even more undesirable because Texas would be a slave state. A November 1846 editorial in the State Journal & Flag against Whig newspapers and their denouncement of the war was titled "Moral Treason." General coverage of the war included maps of engagements and the course of the war, battle reports and lists of those killed in action, and accounts from locals involved in the fighting.

As a Southern Democratic newspaper, the State Journal & Flag avowedly supported slavery and its expansion, so it reprinted articles about and offered editorials on the subject. It also gave a great deal of attention to the midterm elections; though Alabama was not electing U.S. senators or representatives in 1846, the editors found the national results worrying: the Whigs won control of the House of Representatives, ending the Democratic domination of national politics. The editors remained critical of the incumbent Alabama governor, Joshua Lanier Martin, a Jacksonian Democrat and former U.S. representative. He had been elected to the position as an independent in a challenge to the Democratic nominee, who came from the unusually pro-bank faction of the party. In January 1847 the paper moved to the new capital, Montgomery, merging with the Montgomery Advertiser to become the Tri-Weekly Flag and Advertiser.

Provided by: University of Alabama Libraries, Tuscaloosa, AL