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The crisis. : (Chillicothe, Livingston Co., Mo.) 1877-1878
Place of publication:
Chillicothe, Livingston Co., Mo.
Geographic coverage:
  • Chillicothe, Livingston, Missouri  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
T.H. Lankford
Dates of publication:
  • Vol. 1, no. 1 (Aug. 30, 1877)-v. 2, no. 2 (Sept. 5, 1878).
  • English
  • Chillicothe (Mo.)--Newspapers.
  • Missouri--Chillicothe.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01227928
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
sn 89066349
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The crisis. August 30, 1877 , Image 1


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The Crisis and Weekly Chillicothe Crisis

The Weekly Chillicothe Crisis of Chillicothe, Missouri, was a Populist paper that supported the Greenback Party. It started as a Democratic paper and was published by Thomas H. Lankford under the name the Crisis. The first issue appeared on August 30, 1877. In his salutatory message, Lankford declared, "The Crisis will be Democratic in politics and shall ever be found a faithful and devoted advocate of the principles and policies of the Democratic Party. Realizing the wide spread financial distress that now prevails, and the general depression of trade and business all over the country, the Crisis will be the uncompromising foe to the pernicious and ruinous policies that have characterized the Republican party, ever since its advent to power." It is not surprising that the Crisis changed its political affiliation a year later as economic reform was a major component of the Greenback Party’s ideology.

The last issue of the Crisis appeared on September 5, 1878. Starting on September 12, Lankford changed the name of the paper to the Weekly Chillicothe Crisis. It remained a four-page weekly that was issued every Thursday, but Lankford increased the number of columns to eight. The Weekly Chillicothe Crisis formally announced its change of political affiliation in the September 26, 1878 issue. This was also the first issue with Paul J. Dixon as editor and Thomas H. Lankford as local editor. Dixon wrote, "With this issue of this paper we take control of its editorial columns. Henceforward this paper will advocate the principles of the great National - Greenback - Labor party.... While the Crisis will be enthusiastic in support of the Greenback cause it will not neglect the other duties of journalism. Each community in which the Crisis shall circulate will be fully represented in its news columns."

Not everyone was happy with this change and in the same issue, Dr. James E. Cadle stated, "As it has been generally understood that I was connected with the Crisis, and as the present issue comes out under a change of party, it is but just to myself to say to the former patrons of the paper that my relations to the paper have ceased. Mr. Paul Dixon assumes editorial control." Cadle was never listed as an official editor for the Crisis or the Weekly Chillico the Crisis, but he had apparently written some editorial columns for the paper.

The new editor, Paul Dixon was a lawyer who had moved to Chillicothe as a teenager with his family from Ohio. Dixon was a staunch supporter of the Greenback Party, as his salutatory message indicates. In 1884, Dixon ran for Secretary of State representing the Greenback Party.

According to the History of Livingston County (1886), the Crisis "is largely and, indeed, mostly the product of [Dixon's] own pains and energy; built up from unfortunate circumstances and surroundings but nevertheless substantially improved, until now it is an excellent journal." The Weekly Chillicothe Crisis ceased publishing around 1911.

Provided by: State Historical Society of Missouri; Columbia, MO