Major Newspapers in the Progressive Era

I’m looking for names of the most popular (i.e. high circulation) newspapers in the Progressive Era, their general partisan affiliation, and (if they were around yet) who they endorsed in the elections of 1896 and 1900. I would be much obliged for any of the above information.

I was taught information like that in my History of Journalism class in college and don’t feel like doing your homework for you, but I’d suggest you start by looking up the names William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer.

This is an era where they were de-emphasizing partisanship in favor of general muckracking and sensationalism. But the old partisan papers (Times, Post, Blade) were still around, if sometimes changing their affiliation, and I’m interested in what their general affiliations were (the Times for example, erratically endorsed candidates from both parties, and even endorsed a third party candidate, during this period). Also, while I’m aware of the war between Hearst and Pulitzer, there were sometimes papers under those editors which went against their ideological grain, and I’m not just interested in the well-known World and Tribune.

No offense, but I bet you weren’t taught this information in journalism class, because it’s not generally known. I didn’t find anything at the library, and I didn’t find much on the Internet (yes, I did Google Books. yes, I searched the interlibrary catalog). I of course wouldn’t ask you to do my homework for me, but if you happened to know the information offhand, I’d be much obliged. I can’t blame you for not knowing it.

You might be interested in the free Library of Congress newspaper database(searchable), Chronicling America.

The search engine works pretty well and the newspapers are from around the US.

Let me suggest Edwin Emery’s The Press and America, which I believe is out of print, but still available through Amazon. Emery took a long walk through the 1870’s-1920’s and talks not just about newspapers, but also magazines. He covers the major newspapers and editors/publishers of the era.

Although Emery generally didn’t get as detailed to the point of newspapers’ specific endorsements, he mentions the Hearst-owned Journal-American’s support of Bryan “despite the conservative East’s horror of Bryanism,” the Scripps’ chain and Kansas City Star’s support of Theodore Roosevelt in 1912 and several other individual endorsements. Emery also devotes a section to magazines such as LaFollette’s Weekly, American Magazine, McClure’s and others that influenced the Progressive movement.