The Library of Congress > Chronicling America > The news scimitar.

Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1777-1963 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities external link and the Library of Congress. Learn more

The news scimitar. : (Memphis, Tenn.) 1907-1926
Alternative Titles:
  • Memphis news scimitar
  • Sunday illustrated news scimitar
Place of publication:
Memphis, Tenn.
Geographic coverage:
  • Memphis, Shelby, Tennessee  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
Gilbert D. Raine
Dates of publication:
  • Vol. 28, no. 336 (Dec. 2, 1907)-v. 46, no. 291 (Nov. 15, 1926).
Daily (except Sun.) May 3-Nov. 15, 1926
  • English
  • Memphis (Tenn.)--Newspapers.
  • Shelby County (Tenn.)--Newspapers.
  • Tennessee--Memphis.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01204194
  • Tennessee--Shelby County.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01209894
  • "Memphis" appears in masthead ornament Apr. 1, 1921-Nov. 15, 1926.
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • Merged with: Memphis press, to form: Memphis press-scimitar.
sn 98069867
Preceding Titles:
Succeeding Titles:
Related Links:
View complete holdings information
First Issue Last Issue

The news scimitar. October 22, 1918 , Image 1


Calendar View

All front pages

First Issue  |  Last Issue

The News Scimitar

The Memphis [Tennessee] News Scimitar traces its origins to the Evening Scimitar, which was established in the early 1880s. The paper underwent several name changes before it merged with the Memphis Morning News in 1904 and became the Memphis News-Scimitar. In 1907, its name was shortened to the News Scimitar.

Between 1921 and 1926, the publisher, Paul Block, held controlling interest in the News Scimitar. As a child, Block, whose family had emigrated from East Prussia, was a newsboy and office messenger for Harry S. Brooks, the founder of the Elmira [New York]Telegram. After learning the newspaper business, Block developed a close business association with William Randolph Hearst. In the early 1920s, Block - possibly as a front man for Hearst - began purchasing financial stakes in newspapers across the nation.

The News Scimitar was a member of the Associated Press and United Press International, which meant that the paper had access to a wide range of content from bylined news articles to editorial cartoons during the First World War. Borrowing from Hearst and Pulitzer's model of new journalism, the modern-style newspaper featured bold headlines, photographs, and a wide variety of sections from sports to a women's page. Toward the end of the First World War, the News Scimitar ran an unusual series of photographs under the heading, "Babies who will have to be 'introduced' to their Daddies." Each day, a photograph of an infant was printed and accompanied by a pithy heartwarming tale of the family's anticipation of the moment the father would return from the war to meet his child for the first time.

By the 1920s, the population of Memphis had grown to an estimated 150,000. The News Scimitar circulated to nearly 42,000 subscribers who paid an annual subscription of $5 for the daily (issued every evening except Sundays). Despite the News Scimitar being the main rival to the Commercial Appeal, both papers united in their fight against Memphis politician E.H. "Boss" Crump's grip on the city. Tennessee Newspaper Hall of Fame inductee, Ralph L. Millett, was managing editor of the News Scimitar from 1920 to 1924, then political editor and later, associate editor of the Memphis Press-Scimitar. Millett led a continuous battle against Crump's "political machine" until its defeat in 1948.

In 1926, the News Scimitar merged with the Memphis Press to become the Memphis Press-Scimitar, and remained in publication until 1983.

Provided by: University of Tennessee