Douglas Daily Dispatch
Douglas, Arizona, located along the U.S.-Mexico border, saw the debut of its first two newspapers within a month of each other in early 1902. The weekly Douglas International (later titled the Daily International–American [LCCN: sn 96060781]) appeared first, followed by the weekly Douglas Dispatch. Experienced newspaperman Albert Franklin Banta started the Dispatch, but within a year, Franklin B. Dorr purchased the paper and took Banta’s place as editor and proprietor.
Under Dorr, the newspaper started publishing daily, except Mondays, in 1903, and the paper’s name was changed to the Douglas Daily Dispatch to reflect this. The Bisbee Daily Review [LCCN: sn 84024827] from neighboring Bisbee, Arizona, commented that “a daily paper at Douglas is but another evidence of the wonderful growth of that town.” Initially, the Daily Dispatch focused on local issues, with a 1904 slogan “What is home without the Dispatch?” The paper featured a “Local and Personal News” column and listed accomplishments of community members. Douglas was the home to smelters for nearby copper mining operations, and the paper regularly reported mining news. The Bisbee Daily Review commented on the Daily Dispatch’s Annual Industrial Edition in 1904, noting that it “covers especially the mining interests of Sonora, Mexico, and Cochise County.” Even with the local focus, the paper often ran wire stories from the Associated Press to provide readers with national and international news. The newspaper also covered local and national politics. As a Republican publication, the Daily Dispatch frequently included news about the party’s conventions and candidates.
Dorr remained at the helm of the paper until George Kelly from the Douglas International took over as manager in 1907. James Logie, who had been working at the International for several years, was placed in charge of the Daily Dispatch by Kelly. Two years later, Logie took over as manager and expanded the coverage of the newspaper, such as adding a “With Arizona Editors” section that sampled the opinions of editors of various Arizona newspapers. In 1925, the newspaper included comics, crossword puzzles, a poetry column, and a sports page. According to a special section in a 1975 issue of the Dispatch, the Democratic International and the Republican Dispatch were often at odds with each other because of their political stances. The two papers merged in 1925 and ran under the Douglas Daily Dispatch name.
Logie remained proprietor of the paper until he sold it in 1945 to J. Newall Johnston, who also expanded the newspaper’s coverage. Twenty years later, Aaron Loney bought the paper and managed it until 1973. In 1966 the paper established a Spanish-language edition, La Unión, with a subtitle of “La Voz de la Frontera” (“The voice of the border”) that was published for a short time. From 1963 to 1967, the Dispatch was published weekly and was renamed the Douglas Dispatch. It then became a daily again under the name Dispatch from 1967 to 1973, followed by the Daily Dispatch, under which it continues to publish today.
Essay provided by University of Arizona Libraries.Dates of Publication1903-1961Frequency of PublicationDailyPlace of PublicationDouglas, ArizonaLanguageEnglishPermissions and ReuseThe contents of the Arizona Digital Newspaper Program (ADNP) are available to the public by our partners for using in research, teaching, and private study. Please note that U.S. Copyright and intellectual property laws apply to the digital resources made available through this site.