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Virginia Staats-Gazette. [volume] : (Richmond, Va.) 1870-1904
Alternative Titles:
  • Sonntags-Blatt der Virginia Staats-Gazette
Place of publication:
Richmond, Va.
Geographic coverage:
  • Richmond, Virginia  |  View more titles from this: City State
J. Rosenfeld
Dates of publication:
  • Began in 1870; ceased in 1904?
  • German
  • Germans--Virginia--Newspapers.
  • Germans.--fast--(OCoLC)fst00942100
  • Richmond (Va.)--Newspapers.
  • Virginia--Richmond.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01205345
  • Virginia.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01204597
  • Absorbed the Richmond patriot; Cf. Cappon, L.J. Va. newspapers.
  • Description based on: 4. Jahrg., Nr. 295 (1. Jan. 1874).
  • In German.
  • Sunday ed. published as: Sonntags-Blatt der Virginia Staats-Gazette, <1876>.
sn 85026936
Preceding Titles:
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Virginia Staats-Gazette. [volume] January 1, 1874 , Image 1


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Virginia Staats-Gazette

Richmond's German population grew substantially from the mid to late nineteenth century, though most German immigrants to Virginia settled in parts north and west of Richmond. By 1850, Germans had created clearly definable neighborhoods in Virginia's capital city, including Union Hill and Navy Hill. By 1860, there were over 1,600 German born people living in Richmond, and though this accounted for only 15 percent of all Germans living in Virginia, the city's population was large enough to sustain more than one German language newspaper.

Established in April 1870 by the Virginia German Publishing Co., the Virginia Staats-Gazette was an Independent German language daily published in Richmond until 1904. The Staats-Gazette absorbed the earlier German newspaper Richmond Patriot, started in 1869 by a group of liberal Germans dissatisfied with Richmond's established German language daily, Richmonder Anzeiger, a Democratic paper published by Burghardt Hassel from 1853 until 1915.

From the start, the Virginia Staats-Gazette grabbed attention, even in newspapers from as far away as Staunton, which is one hundred miles west of Richmond. The Staunton Spectator, reported on April 19, 1870 that the Staats-Gazette, "is a good sized paper of twenty-eight columns, neatly printed. The attention of German friends is respectfully called to this journal." On August 26, 1870, the Staunton Vindicator wrote that the Staats-Gazette was "a very sprightly German daily," and that Richmond was a "prime place for the editorial fraternity."

Newspapers like the Staats-Gazette not only provided local, state, national, and international news to German readers, but they also served to connect the city's German immigrant population, many of whom were new to the area.

From 1870-1872, the Staats-Gazette was edited by lithographer Paul Ketterlinus, a leading figure amongst Richmond's German population. On March 13, 1871, Ketterlinus made the news for speaking at a torchlight procession that moved down Richmond's Broad Street to celebrate Germany's success in the Franco-Prussian War. "Not for ten years has there been such a nocturnal demonstration in Richmond as our streets presented last night," reported the Daily Dispatch on March 14. 1871. The description continued "The occasion was the public rejoicing by our German fellow-citizens and others of foreign birth and descent over the restoration of peace to Europe." Edward Daniels succeeded Ketterlinus as the Staats-Gazette's editor from 1872-1873 and was followed by Jacob Rosenfeld for a short time. On February 4, 1874, the Daily State Journal reported that the Staats-Gazette was "now under the capable conduct and management of Dr. John H. Pein." After Pein's death in 1886, Moritz Friedrich Richter, born in Saxony, became publisher and retained the position until the paper ceased in 1904.

Though the Staats-Gazette claimed "a circulation … larger than the combined circulation of all the other daily German newspapers of the state," its circulation numbers were nearly even with those of its rival, Richmonder Anzeiger. In 1872, its circulation peaked at 1,000, but by 1884, circulation had dropped to 525 and did not vary greatly from that for its duration. According to the Daily State Journal the format of the Staats-Gazette was enlarged in May 1873, giving it the distinction of being the largest German paper published south of the Potomac. In 1876, Virginia Staats-Gazette began publishing a Sunday edition, Sonntags-Blatt der Virginia Staats-Gazette, and sometime around 1904, not long before it ended, it purchased Der Süden, Deutsch-Amerikanisches Wochenblatt, a German weekly, edited by Hermann Schurict of nearby Louisa County.

Provided by: Library of Virginia; Richmond, VA