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Delaware inquirer. : (Wilmington, Del.) 1859-18??
Place of publication:
Wilmington, Del.
Geographic coverage:
  • Wilmington, New Castle, Delaware  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
James Montgomery
Dates of publication:
  • Began with Apr. 30, 1859 issue.
  • English
  • Delaware--Wilmington.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01203983
  • Wilmington (Del.)--Newspapers.
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Description based on: Vol. 1, no. 2 (May 7, 1859).
sn 88053053
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Delaware inquirer. May 7, 1859 , Image 1


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Delaware Inquirer

The Delaware Inquirer was a weekly newspaper founded in Wilmington by James Montgomery and housed at 95 Shipley Street. The first issue was published on April 30, 1859, with the motto, "Unity, Equality, Fraternity." A subscription cost $2 per year.

The Delaware Inquirer was intended to promote the presidential campaign of Stephen Douglas. A staunch Democrat, Montgomery used the newspaper as a forum for criticizing Democrat party leaders opposed to Douglas. Montgomery worked with local Democrats such as Samuel Townsend to support the notion of popular sovereignty on the question of slavery. While personally opposed to slavery, Montgomery did not favor its abolition in the Southern states.

Following the defeat of Douglas by Abraham Lincoln, the Delaware Inquirer became more sympathetic to the Republican cause. While the newspaper opposed secession, it was also critical of Lincoln's suspension of the writ of habeas corpus. The Inquirer addressed national news and included numerous editorials on national political matters, but it was also committed to supporting the community of Wilmington. Montgomery reported on local court proceedings, current prices for dry goods, births and deaths, as well as other local issues. As the paper gained subscribers, the number of local advertisements increased dramatically.

The Delaware Inquirer continued publication through the end of the Civil War. In 1865, it was taken over by James Riggs who, however, was unsuccessful in maintaining ownership. Within a few months, the paper passed to Caleb Johnson, editor of the Delaware Gazette, and the Delaware Inquirer ceased to exist.

Provided by: University of Delaware Library, Newark, DE