About Ogden daily commercial. (Ogden, Utah) 1889-1891
Ogden, Utah (1889-1891)
- Ogden daily commercial. : (Ogden, Utah) 1889-1891
- Alternative Titles:
- Ogden commercial <July 26-Aug. 22, 1891>
- Place of publication:
- Ogden, Utah
- Geographic coverage:
- Commercial Pub. Co.
- Dates of publication:
- Began Apr. 4, 1889; ceased in 1891. Cf. Alter, J.C. Early Utah journalism.
- Daily (except Mon.)
- Description based on: Mar. 23, 1890.
- Sometimes published as: Ogden commercial, <July 26-Aug. 22, 1891>.
- sn 85058401
- View complete holdings information
Ogden Daily Commercial
The city of Ogden is located in northern Utah, at the spot where the Ogden River joins the Weber River as they wind down the Wasatch Mountains toward the Great Salt Lake. In the 1840s, Mormon pioneers began establishing small farming towns on the fertile land near the rivers. Ogden remained a small and isolated Mormon community until 1869, when the transcontinental railroad was completed with a ceremonial “golden spike,” turning Ogden into perhaps the most cosmopolitan city in the region.
Ogden’s overnight transformation into a booming rail hub gave rise to a long line of newspapers in the 1870s and 1880s that exposed a growing conflict between the new residents of Ogden and the leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS). As the rail lines brought ever more non-Mormons to Ogden, the newcomers sought to dilute the local influence of Utah’s dominant church. Of the dozens of fly-by-night newspapers in Ogden in these years, most exhibited a decidedly “anti-Mormon” attitude.
One such newspaper was the Ogden Daily Commercial, which first appeared April 4, 1889, Under editor A. C. Bishop, the paper offered a strong voice of opposition to the influence of the LDS Church on Ogden politics. Further stirring the pot, the Daily Commercial served as a local mouthpiece of the Liberal Party and backed the territorial delegate candidacy of Charles Carroll Goodwin, a well-known anti-Mormon journalist from Salt Lake City. Although Goodwin lost the election, the Daily Commerical became influential in Ogden, attracting readers and advertisers alike. The newspaper lauded its own achievement in an editorial celebrating the publication’s first birthday: “Today THE COMMERCIAL begins the second year of its existence….it can truthfully be said that the result has been far greater than was hoped for. THE COMMERCIAL is today in the front rank of Utah journalism and has the swing in the best and most promising city in the territory.”
The success enjoyed by the Daily Commercial resulted from an editorial mix that appealed to the growing number of Ogden residents, as well as those just passing through. A bold headline in the July 4, 1890, edition proclaimed: “Ogden City, Utah, The Queen City of the Rocky Mountains,” accompanied by a glowing review delivered by a San Francisco journalist who had “visited Ogden en route east.” The Daily Commercial was published every day except Monday, and between July 26 and August 22, 1891, the paper appeared as simply, the Commercial.
Unfortunately, the Daily Commercial failed to reach its third birthday. Because the publisher was not willing to go into debt to keep the paper up and running, in December 1891 all the property of Commercial Publishing Co. was sold in foreclosure for $7,500. Newspapers would continue to come and go in the bustling railway city of Ogden, but it was the end of the line for the Daily Commercial.
Provided by: University of Utah, Marriott Library