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The intelligencer. [volume] : (Lexington, Mo.) 1887-1891
Place of publication:
Lexington, Mo.
Geographic coverage:
  • Lexington, Lafayette, Missouri  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Alex A. Lesueur
Dates of publication:
  • Vol. 17, no. 10 (Apr. 16, 1887)-v. 21, no. 4 (Feb. 14, 1891).
  • English
  • Lafayette County (Mo.)--Newspapers.
  • Lexington (Mo.)--Newspapers.
  • Missouri--Lafayette County.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01209431
  • Missouri--Lexington.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01217590
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
sn 93060412
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The intelligencer. [volume] April 16, 1887 , Image 1


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Lexington Weekly Intelligencer, The Intelligencer, The Weekly Intelligencer and The Lexington Intelligencer

Judge William Young, John T. Smith, and Richard B. Vaughan started the Lexington Weekly Intelligencer in Lexington, Missouri, in April 1871. The paper was known as “the organ of Democracy” and was Democratic in its politics. The Intelligencer was a weekly paper published on Wednesday. Young, its first editor, had been born and raised in Lafayette County, Missouri. He served in the Confederate army and fought in both the battles of Carthage and Wilson’s Creek where he was injured, losing his left arm and three fingers from his right hand. After the war, Young studied law under Judge Samuel Locke Sawyer and was admitted to the bar in 1868. Young practiced law while he was editor of the Intelligencer. He left the paper in 1872 and was elected sheriff in the same year. In May 1874, Young was appointed judge of the Lafayette County court to help the county clean up its financial affairs.

In the years that followed, proprietors and editors of the Intelligencer changed frequently. Lafayette W. Groves purchased Smith’s interest in the paper shortly after it was established. Groves shared the editorial duties with Young until July 1872 when Young retired and Grove became the sole editor. During the state election campaign of that year, Groves and Edwin Turner of the Missouri Valley Register, the Republican paper in town, exchanged harsh word in their editorials and on the streets of Lexington. In his editorial on October 24, 1872, Turner claimed that Groves had deserted the Confederate army right before his unit was going to battle. On October 30, 1872, Groves responded: “When the chief carpet-bagger of the Register, who now chases a congressional phantom, was at home that paper had some little show of decency and uprightness. When he left he turned his paper over to his dirty cubs. Since then it has been a regular muck pile – all filth and no brains.” The war of words came to a head when the two men met at the corner of Laurel and North streets on November 8. 1872. Turner called out to Groves saying “you called me a dirty son of a -----; take your hand off that pistol,” and then Turner fatally shot Groves. Turner turned himself him to the Sheriff and was tried for murder in Kansas City after the court agreed to a change of venue to ensure a fair trial. Turner was eventually acquitted on all charges after he was found to be acting in self-defense. Several witnesses were able to show that Groves had a pistol in his hand. Turner continued to work as an editor for the Register. The Intelligencer maintained its operations with John S. Davis as publisher and Michael Steele and Henry L. Haynes as editors.

In 1875, the Weekly Caucasian consolidated with the Intelligencer. The latter was then owned by the Intelligencer Printing Company and went through several owners, managers, and editors, including a nephew and namesake of the late Lafayette Groves. Upon Grove’s retirement, the Odessa Missouri Ledger wrote, “The Intelligencer is one of the best pieces of newspaper property in the state and we predict a bright future for it under the management of Mr. [Isaac G.] Neale.” The Intelligencer changed its name along with editors and proprietors. In 1887, it became the Intelligencer, and in 1891 it was known as the Weekly Intelligencer. The final name change occurred in 1901 when it became the Lexington Intelligencer. The paper ceased publication in 1949.

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