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The Weekly Texarkanian. : (Texarkana, Ark.) 1894-1926
Place of publication:
Texarkana, Ark.
Geographic coverage:
  • Texarkana, Miller, Arkansas  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
George S. Valliant
Dates of publication:
  • Began in 1894? Ceased in 1926?
  • English
  • Bowie County (Tex.)--Newspapers.
  • Miller County (Ark.)--Newspapers.
  • Texarkana (Ark.)--Newspapers.
  • Texarkana (Tex.)--Newspapers.
  • Continues: Weekly Texarkana Democrat (non-extant).
  • Description based on: Vol. 28, no. 39 (May 12, 1904).
sn 88083523
Related Titles:
View complete holdings information

Texarkana Democrat, Daily Texarkana Independent, Weekly Texarkana Independent, Daily Texarkana Democrat, The Daily Texarkanian, and The Weekly Texarkanian

Texarkana, established in 1873, extends across the state line into Arkansas and Texas. The area was first surveyed by railroad companies, and by the time Texarkana was founded, lines from the Cairo and Fulton Railroad connected Texarkana to the other end of Arkansas.The city's motto is "Twice as Nice."

In Arkansas, Texarkana serves as the Miller County seat, with the first courthouse completed in 1893. At that time, the city had a population of over 6,000. It was the terminus for several railroads, including the St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern, and Trans-Continental railroads. Other industries in town included machinery and car shops, streetcar lines, gas works, as well as an electric light plant, ice factory, oil mill, cotton compress, and telephone service. Industries in the surrounding area included timber harvesting, mineral extraction, and agriculture.

G. H. Wooten and his sons, Francis G. "Pete" and Jack Wooten, established the Texarkana Democrat in 1875 on the Arkansas side of Texarkana. It was a weekly paper published on Saturdays. The Wootens sold the paper in 1882 to Dayton B. Hayes and Ed A. Church, who added an afternoon daily edition in 1883. In 1884, Joe E. Cook and J. V. Scott bought the paper, but they quickly sold to E. A. Warren, editor, and Charles E. Mitchell that same year. The new owners changed the name of both editions to the Texarkana Independent and used the paper to promote Judge Mitchell as an independent candidate for Congress, though unsuccessfully. In 1890, Warren returned to the Democratic party, and changed the paper back to the Democrat.

In 1892, John W. Gardner bought the paper and later renamed it the Texarkanian. He was a strong advocate of prohibition and used the Texarkanian to denounce alcohol. The weekly edition was published on Thursdays, and the daily came out every evening except Sundays. W. H. Ward worked as the editor for Gardner during his first decade at the Texarkanian. For the latter half, "Pete" Wooten returned as editor. Wooten was described as one of the most popular newspaper people in Texarkana.

In 1902, Gardner retired from the Texarkanian due to failing eyesight, ending his 28-year newspaper career. Gardner sold the paper to George S. Valliant. Augustus Bryant Sholars worked as editor until 1904, when he was succeeded by W. B. Weeks. Weeks left in 1910.

In 1913, James Lafayette Wadley, Sr. bought the Texarkanian, and ran it with his two sons, Archer Francis Wadley and James Linton Wadley, Jr., under the Texarkana Publishing Company. At that point, the daily and weekly editions each had a circulation of around 2,000. Previously, Wadley, Sr. had worked at the Hot Springs Daily News (1884-1913) for 29 years and had served in Congress.

During the Wadley's tenure at the Texarkanian, they reported on the racial violence and lynching of the Black population in Texarkana. On February 21, 1922, an armed mob of four white men took over the Texarkanian newspaper office and forced the Wadleys, under armed threat, to print a note that the men were the ones who had lynched a Black Texarkanian, P. Norman. The note said the men were citizens of Texarkana and intended to stay there, but it denied they were the KKK. Many in Texarkana denounced the lynching. The Texarkanian continued to report on this incident as well as further violent episodes and the response of local citizens, though there were no more hostage situations.

The Wadleys sold the paper in 1926 to D. W. Stevick, who also purchased the Four States Press (1919-1926) and the Texarkana Journal from Clyde E. Palmer. Stevick consolidated those with the Daily Texarkanian into the Texarkana Gazette (1926-current), a daily morning paper. He then established the Texarkana Evening News as a companion to the Gazette. In 1929, he renamed the Evening News to the Texarkana Daily News (1929-1978). In 1933, Palmer bought the Gazette back from Stevick, along with the Daily News, under Texarkana Newspapers Inc. Henry Humphrey worked as the editor and Palmer as publisher. The Gazette continues today, and is read in Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana.

Provided by: Arkansas State Archives