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Bismarck weekly tribune. [volume] : (Bismarck, D.T. [N.D.]) 1875-1878
Alternative Titles:
  • Bismarck tribune
Place of publication:
Bismarck, D.T. [N.D.]
Geographic coverage:
  • Bismarck, Burleigh, North Dakota  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Bismarck Tribune Co.
Dates of publication:
  • Vol. 3, no. 18 (Nov. 13, 1875)-v. 6, no. 18 (Oct. 2, 1878).
Weekly June 6, 1877-Oct. 2, 1878
  • English
  • Bismarck (N.D.)--Newspapers.
  • North Dakota--Bismarck.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01206574
  • Archived issues are available in digital format as part of the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Publisher's block reads: Bismarck tribune.
sn 84022129
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Bismarck weekly tribune. [volume] November 13, 1875 , Image 1


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The Bismarck Tribune, Bismarck Weekly Tribune, Bismarck Tri-weekly Tribune, Bismarck Daily Tribune

On June 5, 1873, a Washington hand-set press arrived on the first train to Bismarck, Dakota Territory. Col. Clement A. Lounsberry, a Civil War veteran and an experienced editor with the Minneapolis Tribune, immediately set out to publish the first issue of what would become the longest running newspaper in what is now North Dakota. The first issue of the Bismarck Tribune, dated July 11, 1873, actually appeared on July 6. The paper was published as a seven-column weekly. The title changed first to the Bismarck Weekly Tribune in 1875, when it began publishing a second edition, and then to the Bismarck Tri-weekly Tribune, from November 1875 through April 1881. In 1884, the title reverted to the original Bismarck Weekly Tribune. The paper continued through 1943, with the exception of the years 1919 to 1926 when the weekly publication was suspended, although the daily edition continued.

A significant event in the history of the Bismarck Weekly Tribune came in 1876 as the Seventh Cavalry, stationed at Fort Abraham Lincoln, across the Missouri River from Bismarck, embarked upon a summer military campaign to return the Sioux Indians to their reservations. General George Armstrong Custer and his regiment of the Seventh Cavalry were wiped out on the Little Big Horn River in Montana. Among those killed at the battle was Mark Kellogg, reporter for the Tribune and the New York Herald. When news of Custer's defeat reached Bismarck via the steamboat Far West, the Tribune's editor Clement Lounsberry commenced to write the story of the battle and send it off to a stunned population back East. Over 15,000 words were transmitted to the New York Herald through the expertise of telegrapher, John Carnahan. This took 22 hours and cost over $3,000.00. The Tribune Extra appeared on July 6, 1876. Lounsberry later relinquished control of the Tribune to Marshall Jewel, his partner, and on April 18, 1881, Jewel launched the daily edition which was published as the Bismarck Daily Tribune. In 1916, the paper's title was shortened to the Bismarck Tribune.

In the 1880s, the Tribune played a pivotal role in the relocation of the Territorial Capitol from Yankton, in the far southern part of the territory, to Bismarck. The newspaper was also foremost in advocating for the division of the Dakota Territory. As early as 1882, the Tribune began carrying the words "Bismarck, North Dakota" on its masthead, and once statehood was achieved in 1889, it conveyed information on governmental affairs at the Capitol.

The Tribune's printing plant was destroyed by fire three times, first in 1885, again in 1898, and the final time in 1920. As an agricultural state, North Dakota was hard hit during the Dust Bowl years of the late 1920s and early 1930s. On May 2, 1937, the Bismarck Tribune, as the daily was named after 1916, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for its coverage of the drought and the resulting economic hardships. The Bismarck Tribune continues to publish today.

Provided by: State Historical Society of North Dakota