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Newport weekly independent. : (Newport, Ark.) 1901-1929
Alternative Titles:
  • Weekly independent
Place of publication:
Newport, Ark.
Geographic coverage:
  • Newport, Jackson, Arkansas  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Van Dyke & Hoffman
Dates of publication:
  • -v. 29, no. 9 (May 31, 1929).
  • Began in 1901.
  • English
  • Description based on: Vol. 1, no. 8 (June 14, 1901).
  • Published as: Weekly independent, Dec. 23, 1921.
sn 89051128
Succeeding Titles:
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Newport weekly independent. April 25, 1901 , Image 1


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Newport Daily Independent and Newport Weekly Independent

Newport is a town in Jackson County in northeast Arkansas. It is located on the White River where the landscape changes from the Ozark foothills to the flat Delta region. Acting as an important junction for river, rail, and road traffic, Newport became an affluent river town by the early twentieth century. Agriculture, timber, and fresh water pearling were important economic contributors for the town. In 1892, Newport became the county seat and still is today.

In 1901, Percy H. Van Dyke created the Newport Independent as a daily edition, Newport Daily Independent (1901-29), and a weekly edition, Newport Weekly Independent (1901-29). Van Dyke started the business with a Washington hand press and modernized his equipment and office over time. He acted as the editor and publisher until 1917 when he sold the Newport Independent to Austin C. Wilkerson and retired from the newspaper business. At the time of purchase, the Newport Daily Independent was the only daily newspaper left in Newport.

The Newport Independent focused on local news in Newport, the northeast region, and the state. The newspaper regularly reported about agricultural concerns and the freshwater pearling industry while also posting the latest train schedules. Pearl purchases were documented in the "About People--Mainly" section. On June 21, 1902, the Newport Independent declared that Newport was the "leading pearl market of Northeast Arkansas and in the number of pearls which change hands, probably ranks ahead of any town in this section of states." During the lead up to the First World War in 1914, national and international news began to make the front page and continued to be published on a recurring basis throughout, and after, the war. Flooding was a problem for Newport and the surrounding area, and updates on water levels for the White River and its tributary, the Black River, were frequently given. In 1918, the Board of Directors of the Newport Levee District made plans for a new levee system that would give Newport separate protection from the Jacksonport levee, which had failed in the past.

Provided by: Arkansas State Archives