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Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The "Reminiscing About 'My Newspaper'" Story

LDub enjoying the morning paper!
Remember to click on photos to enlarge.
It was an ordinary day.  Sitting in my recliner reading "my newspaper" which carries the flag "LNP - Always Lancaster".  I have been reading the newspaper for longer than I care to imagine.  The Lancaster newspaper has changed from time to time; the last change being a few years ago when they changed the flag from "Intelligencer Journal/Lancaster New Era" to "LNP - Always Lancaster" and reduced the width of the paper by about an inch.  At first I had a hard time getting used to the change, but hey, it is "my newspaper" and as long as I can read the happenings of Lancaster and surrounding communities as well as the state, national and world news, I guess I don't really care what the size or flag may be.  But, I do care about the wonderful writers, photo- graphers and artists who make "my newspaper" the topnotch paper that it has been during my lifetime.  The Lancaster newspaper dates its history to "The Lancaster Journal" which was published for the first time June 18, 1794.  
The many flags that covered page #1 of the paper.
It wasn't the first newspaper ever published in Lancaster, but was the foundation of what has been 222 years of newspaper reporting in the county.  An early newspaper, the 1752 "Die Lancaster- sche Zietung" received financial support from none other than Benjamin Franklin.  And, another newspaper, the "Pennsylvanische Zeitung-Blat" was published in 1778 by Francis Bailey, who went on to become the official printer for both the U.S. Congress as well as the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, in his print shop on West King Street in downtown Lancaster, close to the same place where the newspaper that I hold in my hand right now was published.  The "Lancaster Journal" began publication in the middle of the second term of President George Washington and was founded by William Hamilton and Henry Willcocks and carried the motto: "Not Too Rash - yet not Fearful - Open to all Parties, but not influenced by Any."  
This photograph was taken from the Lancaster Online website.
It shows Samuel Lazarowitz selling copies of the Lancaster New
Era in Penn Square on a rainy market day in November 1942.
The photo was taken by Marjory Collins as part of a federal
photography project.  Don't you just love the face of Samuel?
Behind him to the left is the steeple of Lancaster's famous
Central Market in downtown Lancaster.

In a window on South Queen Street, in what is known as the newspaper museum, is a Washington Press which is what was used to print the newspapers in the early 1800s.  That press was replaced by a horse-drawn press in 1839.  Two horses walked in a circle to provide power to a cylindrical press that was used to print the newspaper.  In 1853 the horses were replaced by presses that were run by steam power.  So. you see the history of what I am holding in my hand today is amazing.  But, one page of my paper today holds the key to it's content.  The bold headline says it all: 16 LNP Journalists Receive Honors."  Lancaster has been blessed with some of the best news writers, photographers and artists in the business.  An entire page lists 15 reporters, editors, photographers, artists, columnists and videographers who have won awards from the Keystone Press, The Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association and the Associated Press.  Impressed?  
Comparisons of the old Lancaster
newspaper on the left and what
I now call "my newspaper".
Click on photo to enlarge them. 
You betcha!!  And, over the years many whom have won awards have been students or friends of mine.  One writer, Brad, was the editor of "The Neff-Vue", the Manheim Township High School yearbook which I was adviser to for years and years.  Another writer, Joan, whom I graduated with from high school, has been a writer for years.  Then there are other features writers who have been students at Manheim Township at one time or another.  When I taught photography at the high school, I invited a variety of newspaper photographers to speak to my classes and they always found a way to impress my students.  So, you see why I consider the newspaper in my hands "my newspaper".  And, my family has been featured in the newspaper several times.  My daughter had a great photo of her in the paper when she turned four years old on the 4th of July.  My oldest son was featured numerous time on the sports pages for his baseball skills while my youngest son was featured for his photographic skills as well as a visit with the mayor of Lancaster when he was in elementary school.  My wife was featured for stories she had written for the local school district newspaper and I even got my photo published when I was picked as  "Teacher-of-the-Year" in Lancaster County.  Yeah, I guess it looks suspicious, since I know so many at the newspaper office, doesn't it.  I even know the guy who was in charge of running the presses; sang in the church choir as a boy with him and another pressman helped me coach little league baseball.  But, "my newspaper" is still something special to me and will always be.  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy.     

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