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The Detroit times. [volume] : (Detroit, Mich.) 1903-1920
Place of publication:
Detroit, Mich.
Geographic coverage:
  • Detroit, Wayne, Michigan  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Detroit To-Day Co.
Dates of publication:
  • 3rd yr., no. 89 (Jan. 12, 1903)-21st yr., no. 50 (Nov. 27, 1920).
  • English
  • Detroit (Mich.)--Newspapers.
  • Michigan--Detroit.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01205010
  • Michigan--Wayne County.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01206628
  • Wayne County (Mich.)--Newspapers.
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Independent. Cf. Ayer, 1960.
  • Publisher: W.E. Anderman, <1945>.
sn 83016689
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The Detroit times. [volume] January 1, 1908 , Image 1


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The Detroit Times, and Detroit Evening Times

The Detroit Evening Times was founded by James Schermerhorn. It began publication October 1, 1900 under the name Today. Schermerhorn learned printing from his father, who was editor of the Hudson Gazette. Schermerhorn succeeded his father as editor and publisher of the Hudson Gazette in 1886 until 1895. He then came to Detroit where we worked first for the Detroit publication the Evening News from 1895 to 1896 and the Detroit Free Press from 1896 to 1900. He left the Free Press to start the Times.

Schermerhorn brought an interesting editorial mix to his new newspaper. A Democrat, he had a particular interest in working class news. He consciously adopted a non-partisan editorial policy for his paper. In an introduction to the paper, he defined the Times purpose to be "a compact chronicle for toilful people, with nothing but news and an opinion or two."

Unlike the majority of those who belonged to the Democratic Party, he was a staunch Prohibitionist, who eventually developed a national reputation as a speaker on the subject. One pundit, playing off of a stereotype that all "drys" were dull, boring people, announced that Schermerhorn couldn't be for Prohibition because he had a sense of humor. His humor also regularly appeared in the Times. In their local history of the area, History of Wayne County and the City of Detroit (1930), Clarence M. Burton and M. Agnes Burton describe the Times as "a paper with a personality." In particular, they describe Schermerhorn as having an "individualistic" style remarking that "Detroiters came to know and like the pithy and humorously pointed sentences which came from the Schermerhorn pen."

In 1921, Schemerhorn's financial difficulties led the paper to declare bankruptcy. It was eventually sold to representatives of William Randolph Hearst. The paper would continue to be owned by the Hearst chain until it was closed in 1960, and its assets were sold to the Detroit News.

Provided by: Central Michigan University, Clark Historical Library