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Contributed by Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records: State Library of Arizona

Pinal County

The weekly newspaper the Oasis, of the Oasis Publishing Company, launched on May 11, 1893 by founder and Editor Allen T. Bird, who began the periodical in Arizola, Arizona. The paper was dedicated to Southern Arizona and its surroundings and was considered highly knowledgeable on the subject of mining.

The Oasis continued in Arizola until May 10, 1894 and then moved to Benson beginning May 17, 1894 through November 22, 1894. Finally, the newspaper relocated to Nogales December 6, 1894, according to Estelle Lutrell's Newspapers and Periodicals of Arizona 1859-1911.

Like many early papers, partisanship had its effect on the Oasis, which originally began as a Republican newspaper, but would later change to a Democratic one around 1914. Contentions among editors were commonplace for the times; and while in Nogales, Bird would find himself involved in such disagreements. On one occasion, a scuffle arose between Bird and Hamilton R. Sisk. William H. Lyon maintains in Those Old Yellow Dog Days: Frontier Journalism in Arizona: 1859-1912 that later, "Bird apologized after being condemned at a mass meeting."

Working in the newspaper business left much to be wanted. The profession was known to be of little personal benefit, with its long hours and minimal pay. In Those Old Yellow Dog Days: Frontier Journalism in Arizona: 1859-1912, Lyon references the Oasis from 1899 which describes newspapermen as being "'rank suckers'", poor businessmen "who let sentiment interfere with profits, ran notices and advertisements at a fraction of their proper cost, and bent to the whims of scheming politicians." Cases of libel were also commonplace in the newspaper field. In 1895 Bird was charged with slander by the Nogales board of supervisors and again two years later by a customs collector of the name Sam Webb, whose job Bird coveted. Webb would be fired from his post later the same year. On October 9, 1920, the Oasis was sold to a larger association, which ceased its publication.

 

 

The Oasis Titles Available on AMP
The Oasis
Years of publication: 1893-1920, Years digitized: 1893-1912

 
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