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The Manitowoc tribune. [volume] : (Manitowoc, Wis.) 1866-1878
Alternative Titles:
  • Manitowoc semi-weekly tribune
  • Tribune
  • Weekly tribune
Place of publication:
Manitowoc, Wis.
Geographic coverage:
  • Manitowoc, Manitowoc, Wisconsin  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
O.B. Smith & Co.
Dates of publication:
  • -v. 25, no. 4 (Apr. 18, 1878).
  • Began in 1865 or 1866?
  • English
  • Manitowoc (Wis.)--Newspapers.
  • Wisconsin--Manitowoc.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01225415
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Description based on: Vol. 13, no. 12 (July 12, 1866).
  • Publisher varies.
  • Supplements accompany some issues.
sn 85033153
Succeeding Titles:
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The Manitowoc tribune. [volume] March 21, 1867 , Image 1


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The Manitowoc Tribune and The Manitowoc Pilot

Manitowoc, Wisconsin, first sparked interest among European immigrants as a potential trading post. Located on the shores of Lake Michigan and south of the Door County peninsula, the area had attracted French settlers as early as the 17th century. The town of Manitowoc took shape in the 1830s, influenced largely by the lumber and, eventually, the shipbuilding industry. Manitowoc grew rapidly during the 1870s with the arrival of Bohemian, German, and Polish immigrants. Later, the town became well known for the Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company. Founded in 1902, the firm employed as many as 7,000 people to build submarines during World War II.

In the early years, Manitowoc had several prominent newspapers. The weekly Republican Manitowoc Tribune was first published under that title in 1854 by Sewall W. Smith, who was joined by John N. Stone in 1857. The title of the publication was changed to Manitowoc Weekly Tribune in 1858; however, by 1866, the newspaper was again printed as the Manitowoc Tribune. The price of a subscription was $2, and the proprietors claimed a circulation of 650. The year following the final renaming saw a change in ownership. Julius Enert, Oscar B. Smith, and Walter Lyon ran the Tribune from 1867 until 1869, when Edward Borcherdt became proprietor and editor. Borcherdt was in charge when the Tribune merged with the Manitowoc Pilot in 1878. He shared ownership with John B. Miller from 1874 to 1875, during which time the number of pages briefly increased from four to eight.

Early issues of the Tribune featured national and international news on the front page, farm and garden advice columns, poetry, short fiction pieces, and "miscellaneous items." The last page usually contained a "Local Matters" section. Later issues featured a "Farm and Home" column, a city and county section, and "current items."

The Democratic-leaning Manitowoc Pilot was established in 1859. For the first 10 years, it was published on Fridays at the cost of $2 per subscription; it switched to Thursdays in 1869. Jere Crowley edited the first issue of the Pilot in 1859 and ran the newspaper for a decade. In the following years, three different men edited the Pilot: Ellery B. Treat (1869-70), John C. Bollmeyer (1870-71), and Ten Eyck G. Olmsted (1871-78). After the merger, John Nagle and Tribune editor Borcherdt jointly took on the publication of the Pilot and ran it until Borcherdt left in 1888. Nagle continued for another 12 years, followed by Sidney T. Pratt (1900-03). The paper was then acquired by the Nord Westen Publishing Co. and edited by Edward W. Mackey (1903) and Adelbert C. Schmidt (1903-04). Edward S. Crowe was the last editor from 1904 to 1932.

The Manitowoc Pilot frequently featured poetry, a "Farmers' Column" and educational sections on history or legislation. Early issues included a "Traveler's Directory" for connections to bigger cities and "News by Telegraph." The Pilot's 73-year run exemplifies the transition from mainly text-based publications through increasing occurrences of illustrations solely in advertisement to the use of eye-catching photographs accompanying articles.

Provided by: Wisconsin Historical Society