About the Texarkana Gazette
The roots of the Texarkana Gazette date back to 1875, in a weekly founded by G.H. and F.G. Wooten called theTexarkana Democrat. The paper was sold and merged at least three more times before the end of the century, with an afternoon daily added to the mix, and name changes that included the Independent and the Daily Texarkanian.
The 20th Century brought more name and ownership changes. In 1913, the Texarkanian papers were sold to James L. Wadley and his sons, who operated them until 1926. D.W. Stevick bought them that year. along with the Four States Press and the Texarkana Journal, two newspapers on the Texas side of town owned by Clyde Palmer.
In 1909, Palmer was on his way to his honeymoon with his new bride Bettie when the train made a stop in Texarkana for the night. Clyde and Bettie left the train to eat dinner in town like most of the other passengers. After spending the night there, they decided they would stay a few days. There were several newspapers in Texarkana at the time and Palmer, who was often referred to by his initials, C.E., decided to purchase one of them. He bought the Texarkana Courier for $900. By 1912, he had changed its name to the Four States Press.
After all his acquisitions, Stevick consolidated the four newspapers into the Texarkana Gazette. He then started theTexarkana Daily News, an evening Arkansas publication, as a companion to the Gazette, which was the morning paper. The Daily News was discontinued in 1978.
In 1933, Palmer and three associates bought the Gazette and Daily News from Stevick.
On Palmer's death in 1957, W.E. Hussman, Sr., became head of the firm that published the two newspapers. In 1981, after a career that spanned more than 50 years, he retired. He died July 2, 1988. His son, Walter E. Hussman, Jr., who joined the company in 1970 and who was named president in 1981, now carries on the family tradition.
Today the Gazette circulates in four states: Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Louisiana. In Texas, papers are distributed in Bowie, Red River, Morris, Marion, Titus and Cass counties. In Arkansas, they go to Miller, Little River, Hempstead, Nevada, Howard, Sevier, Columbia and Pike counties. Newspapers are also delivered into McCurtain County, Okla., and Caddo Parish, La.
The Gazette is a subsidiary of WEHCO Media, which also owns the Arkasas Democrat-Gazette in Little Rock, and is part of Palmer Newspapers, which consists of daily newspapers in Hot Springs, El Dorado, Camden, Magnolia and Texarkana.
The Palmer Newspapers have long reflected an attitude of serving the needs of their readers, advertisers, employees, creditors and stockholders. The group puts its customers - its readers and advertisers - first.
The Palmer Newspapers have long been innovators in newspaper technology. The companies were the first in the industry to use a teletypesetter circuit. Another first was the use of facsimile transmissions by microwave. Newspapers in the group were among the first to switch from hot metal to cold type composition, and were among the first newspapers in the country to go to offset lithography printing.
The Palmer Newspapers were one of the first companies in Arkansas to provide group major medical benefits for its employees, and one of the first newspaper groups in the region to provide a profit-sharing plan.
In addition to those firsts, in 1946 the Texarkana Daily News was the first newspaper to use spot color on a news photo. It was a photograph of a red flashlight found at the scene of one of the famous Phantom killings. It ran across four columns and readers were asked to identify it.
Today, the Texarkana Gazette has more than 130 employees, plus 120 independent carriers that deliver newspapers in a 60-mile radius. With an annual payroll of more than $2 million, the Gazette contributes more than $6 million to the local economy each year.
In addition to the Texarkana Gazette, which has an average circulation of about 34,000 daily, the newspaper publishes or distributes several other products. In the Saturday edition, the Gazette prints and delivers the TV Times. In the Sunday edition, reader's can find USA Weekend magazine. On Tuesday, American Profile magazine is included.
Relish magazine can be found in the Texarkana Gazette the first Wednesday of every month. Active Age, a staff-generated magazine for seniors, is distributed the last Thursday of each month.
Cass County Life, a newspaper supplement, is distributed to Gazette readers in Cass County each Wednesday. Likewise, Bowie County Life is distributed to Gazette readers in West Bowie County the same day. In order to better staff these regional publications, the Gazette has local bureaus in Atlanta and New Boston, Texas.
Finally, the Gazette hosts two online Internet sites. The one you are on right now, and a full-page view site that can be reached by clicking on an advertisement on the lower front of this site's home page. The second site presents pages as they appear in the print edition of the newspaper. It can be accessed for free by subscribers who register, or by others for a small monthly fee.
For more than 135 years, the Texarkana Gazette has played an important part in our extended community. And our story is just beginning.
(Note: Some of this information was condensed from "A Chronicle of Arkansas Newspapers," "Arkansas Press Association 1930-1971," and "Palmer Newspapers Personnel Handbook.")