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The Bowbells tribune. [volume] : (Bowbells, Ward Co., N.D.) 1899-1969
Alternative Titles:
  • Bowbells bulletin=tribune
Place of publication:
Bowbells, Ward Co., N.D.
Geographic coverage:
  • Bowbells, Burke, North Dakota  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
  • Bowbells, Ward, North Dakota  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Thos. B. Hurly
Dates of publication:
  • -v. 71, no. 11 (Sept. 4, 1969).
  • Began in Nov. 1899.
  • English
  • Bowbells (N.D.)--Newspapers.
  • North Dakota--Bowbells.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01277484
  • "Official paper of the Village."
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Available on microfilm from the State Historical Society of North Dakota.
  • Description based on: Vol. 1, no. 3 (Dec. 1, 1899).
  • Published as: Bowbells bulletin=tribune, Nov. 22, 1907-June 25, 1908 (due to fire at Tribune plant).
sn 88076095
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The Bowbells tribune. [volume] December 1, 1899 , Image 1


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The Bowbells Tribune

Bowbells is a Soo Line Railroad townsite that was founded in 1896. Railroad officials named it for the bow bells at the Church of St. Mary-le-Bow in London, England. Bowbells was named the county seat when Burke County organized in 1910. The county was named for the governor at the time, John Burke.

In 1899, Thomas B. Hurley arrived in Bowbells with a printing press and established a printing shop on the west side of Main Street. The first issue of the Bowbells Tribune was published Friday, November 18, 1899, with a subscription rate of $1.50 per year. The building occupied by Hurley was one of the many buildings destroyed by a big fire in early 1907. On February 28, 1907, Mr. Hurley purchased another lot and erected a brick building that housed the Tribune until 1969.

In the April 6, 1906 edition, the Bowbells Tribune claimed to be "the oldest paper of Bowbells and the official paper of the people of the city of Bowbells." They also claimed to be equipped with one of the best printing plants in the west.

The Tribune changed hands November 11, 1910, and was taken over by the Tribune Printing Company. Thomas B. Hurley, Charles R. Hurley and Ben A. Stefonowicz, each owned one-third interest in the plant and business. Stefonowicz took over as managing editor. It was at that time that the Tribune stated that it had an undisputed circulation 200 percent larger than any other newspaper published in Burke County.

The Tribune was sold in 1920 to a group of farmers who incorporated under the name of the Burke County Farmers Press while keeping the Tribune as the title. Ben Stefonowicz continued to manage the paper for over a year, when he moved to Devils Lake in 1922, where he had purchased the Devils Lake World newspaper.

Ben's brother, Leonard A. Stefonowicz, became manager and editor in the spring of 1922 until he became business manager in late 1923. L.C. Miller became manager and editor on March 21, 1924. E.R Salisbury took over the reins, succeeding Miller on March 30, 1928. Fourteen months later, L.C. Mill returned to the Tribune and once to hold the editorship and management position until 1937.

After a few more short-term editors, the Tribune was published and edited by the Maschka family beginning in 1943. First was A.H. Maschka, followed by his wife, Ruth, and their daughter, Opal. Soon after Ruth Maschka's death in 1969, the Tribune was sold to Dwight Pfeifer, who changed the name to the Burke County Tribune.

Provided by: State Historical Society of North Dakota