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The Sidney herald. : (Sidney, Mont.) 1908-19??
Place of publication:
Sidney, Mont.
Geographic coverage:
  • Sidney, Richland, Montana  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
L.N. Barton
Dates of publication:
  • Began Mar. 13, 1908.
Semiweekly July 21, 1975-
  • English
  • Description based on: Vol. 1, no. 20 (July 24, 1908).
sn 83004278
Preceding Titles:
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The Sidney herald. January 6, 1955 , Image 1


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The Sidney Herald

The Sidney Herald was established in March 1908 by F.J. Matoushek and Louis N. Barton. The Sidney, Montana paper published its first issue on March 13, 1908, three years before Sidney was incorporated. The Yellowstone Monitor praised the new paper as "extremely newsy" and noted that "For the first issue of a country weekly it is greatly above the average … " The ten-page, five-column paper was solidly Republican, declaring so in its masthead and promoting William Howard Taft for president throughout 1908. The masthead also boasted that the publication was "A Live Paper in a Live Town." Although not a metropolis, Sidney quickly became a center for transportation and trade.

Later in 1908, Matoushek's name disappeared from the masthead and was replaced by that of "Laura E. Barton." The Bartons sold the Herald to William H. Ketcham in October 1909. Ketcham's son, Harry, bought the paper in 1912 and remained publisher for fourteen years. C.R. "Charlie" Hurley bought the Herald in 1926 and published it for 32 years. When Hurley retired in 1958, he sold the paper to a corporation and handed the role of publisher to Leo Schwartz. In 1961, the Wick newspaper chain purchased the Herald and hired Cliff Urseth as publisher.

Over time, the Herald changed in tone. By the 1950s, the partisan focus of the paper gave way to a more politically independent perspective. This shift may be due to the paper's expanded audience. Aside from local Sidney news, the Herald published news for the myriad of small communities in eastern Montana. Regular columns were dedicated to such communities as Culbertson, Richey, Cartwright, and Charley Creek. Many of the communities had a place on the society page and the church service page. In a sprawling agricultural area, the town was a major hub for farmers, ranchers, and others. A 1965 promotional piece noted that Sidney served "a primary trade area of 25,000 people and a secondary of over 50,000 people" at that time. Scores of advertisements emphasized Sidney's importance as a hub of trade, transportation, and agriculture. Promotions for cars and trucks from most manufacturers appeared in the same issues as advertisements for the latest tractors.

Provided by: Montana Historical Society; Helena, MT