Encyclopedia Virginia: Journalism http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/img/EV_Logo_sm.gif Encyclopedia Virginia This is the url http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org The first and ultimate online reference work about the Commonwealth /John_Mitchell_Jr_1863-1929 Mon, 06 May 2019 08:03:41 EST Mitchell, John Jr. (1863–1929) http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/John_Mitchell_Jr_1863-1929 John Mitchell Jr. was a prominent newspaper editor, politician, banker, and civil rights activist. Born enslaved near Richmond, Mitchell attended the Richmond Colored Normal School and taught for a year before he and other black teachers were fired by a new Democratic school board. He then went into journalism, in 1884 becoming editor of the Richmond Planet, an African American weekly newspaper. Mitchell used the Planet to promote civil rights, racial justice, and racial pride. As an editor and an activist, he became a key figure in the antilynching movement and played an instrumental role in organizing the Richmond streetcar boycott of 1904. Mitchell's bold protest against racial injustice, which at times included calls to take up arms in self-defense, earned him his reputation as "the Fighting Editor." In addition to his work on the Richmond Planet, Mitchell served on the Richmond city council from 1888 to 1896 before founding the Mechanics Savings Bank in 1901. His work at the bank brought him more into the political and social mainstream but its collapse in 1922 led him to be convicted on charges of fraud and theft. The conviction was later overturned but left him destitute. When the state Republican Party excluded most black delegates from its convention, Mitchell unsuccessfully ran for governor on a "Lily Black" ticket. He remained editor of the Richmond Planet until his death in 1929.
Mon, 06 May 2019 08:03:41 EST]]>
/Hodges_Willis_A_1815-1890 Fri, 01 Mar 2019 11:56:15 EST <![CDATA[Hodges, Willis A. (1815–1890)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Hodges_Willis_A_1815-1890 Willis A. Hodges was an antislavery activist, newspaper editor, and member of the Convention of 1867–1868. Born in Princess Anne County, the son of free African Americans, he learned to read and write and, with his brothers Charles E. Hodges and William Johnson Hodges, became an outspoken abolitionist. Before the American Civil War (1861–1865), Hodges moved between Virginia and Brooklyn, New York, where his brother William Johnson had settled after a run-in with the law. In New York he ministered at a Baptist church, farmed, helped found a temperance society, and, in 1847, cofounded a weekly antislavery newspaper, the Ram's Horn, through which he befriended the abolitionist John Brown. He also wrote an autobiography. After the war, having returned to Tidewater Virginia, Hodges became an outspoken leader of African Americans, opening a school and becoming involved in Republican Party politics. He served as a delegate to the constitutional convention and was the best known and one of the most active and vocal of the convention's twenty-four African American members, supporting radical reforms and racial equality. In subsequent years, Hodges ran unsuccessfully for the Senate of Virginia and, three times, for the the House of Delegates. He did serve on the Prince Anne County board of supervisors, however, and as the keeper of the Cape Henry lighthouse, perhaps the first African American to hold that position. He died in 1890.
Fri, 01 Mar 2019 11:56:15 EST]]>
/Davis_Augustine_c_1752_or_1753-1825 Thu, 10 Jan 2019 16:11:31 EST <![CDATA[Davis, Augustine (ca. 1752 or 1753–1825)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Davis_Augustine_c_1752_or_1753-1825 Augustine Davis was a prominent printer in Virginia during the Revolutionary War (1775–1783) and the Early Republic period. The Yorktown native entered the publishing trade at one of two versions of the Virginia Gazette in Williamsburg, becoming co-owner in 1779. He eventually followed the state government's relocation to Richmond and in 1786 established the Virginia Independent Chronicle, later named the Virginia Gazette, and General Advertiser. A supporter of a strong federal government, he reprinted essays from The Federalist and supported ratification of what became the U.S. Constitution. Davis became prosperous in the 1790s, investing well and receiving government printing contracts. Despite Virginia's growing population his printing volume remained unchanged, leading to complaints about the scarcity of documents in the western region of the state. The General Assembly removed him as public printer in 1798. Davis supported the Federalist Party in 1800 and advocated the prosecution of James Thomson Callendar and other Jeffersonian editors under the Alien and Sedition Acts (1798). Eleven months after Thomas Jefferson became president, Davis lost his position as Richmond's postmaster. Although declining in political influence, he continued to publish his newspaper under various titles until 1821 before retiring comfortably. He died in 1825.
Thu, 10 Jan 2019 16:11:31 EST]]>
/_A_Slave_of_George_Washington_by_Benjamin_Chase_The_Liberator_January_1_1847 Wed, 12 Dec 2018 14:41:53 EST <![CDATA["A Slave of George Washington!" by Benjamin Chase, The Liberator (January 1, 1847)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_A_Slave_of_George_Washington_by_Benjamin_Chase_The_Liberator_January_1_1847 Wed, 12 Dec 2018 14:41:53 EST]]> /Evans_William_W_d_1892 Fri, 20 Apr 2018 09:35:47 EST <![CDATA[Evans, William W. (d. 1892)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Evans_William_W_d_1892 William W. Evans served one term in the House of Delegates (1887–1888). Evans, whose father served in both houses of the General Assembly, was born enslaved and became involved with politics by 1882, when Petersburg's voters elected him city gauger. By August 1887 Evans had become editor of the Virginia Lancet, a Republican newspaper that he used to advocate improvements in the political and material lives of African Americans. In November of that year he won a seat in the House of Delegates, representing Petersburg. He remained loyal to the Republican Party leader William Mahone during a bruising congressional race in 1888, ultimately won by the independent candidate John Mercer Langston. That year Evans obtained a law license and established a practice in Petersburg. Later he worked in Portsmouth until ill health caused him to move back to Petersburg, where he died in 1892.
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 09:35:47 EST]]>
/Carter_A_Sketch_of_My_Life_and_Our_Family_Record_by_Willis_M_ca_1890s Wed, 04 Apr 2018 16:05:55 EST <![CDATA[Carter, A Sketch of My Life and Our Family Record by Willis M. (ca. 1890s)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Carter_A_Sketch_of_My_Life_and_Our_Family_Record_by_Willis_M_ca_1890s Wed, 04 Apr 2018 16:05:55 EST]]> /Carter_Willis_M_1852-1902 Wed, 04 Apr 2018 10:13:31 EST <![CDATA[Carter, Willis M. (1852–1902)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Carter_Willis_M_1852-1902 Willis M. Carter was an educator and editor who, by the end of the nineteenth century, had become one of Virginia's best-known African Americans. Born into slavery in Albemarle County, he worked as a laborer and a waiter after the American Civil War (1861–1865). In 1874 he moved to Washington, D.C., and received a teaching degree in 1881. Carter then moved to Staunton, where he spent the rest of his life. He served as principal of the West End School there for fifteen years and as president of the August County Teachers' Association. Following the Danville Riot in November 1883 he led a group of African Americans that considered leaving Virginia. He also served as editor and president of the black newspaper the Southern Tribune, published in Staunton. (He changed the paper's name to the Staunton Tribune in 1893.) In 1901 he participated in protests against the new constitutional convention called to disfranchise African Americans. He died in Staunton in 1902.
Wed, 04 Apr 2018 10:13:31 EST]]>
/Daniel_John_M_1825-1865 Mon, 19 Mar 2018 17:41:38 EST <![CDATA[Daniel, John M. (1825–1865)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Daniel_John_M_1825-1865 John M. Daniel was the proslavery editor of the Richmond Examiner, a member of the Council of State (1851–1852), a diplomat stationed in Turin, and a Confederate officer during the American Civil War (1861–1865). Born in Stafford County, he studied law and then worked as a librarian before becoming editor of the Southern Planter and then the Richmond Examiner. Daniel's writing was often abrasive and caustic and he was challenged to and fought several duels throughout his life. He served in the Council of State only a year, until the body was dissolved by a new constitution. In 1853, President Franklin Pierce appointed Daniel to a diplomatic post in Turin, the capital of the Kingdom of Sardinia, in present-day Italy. He stayed on until 1861, surviving calls for his resignation due to his intemperate writing. Upon his return to Richmond, Daniel resumed control of the Examiner and became a prominent wartime voice, supporting the Confederate capital's move to Richmond and Jefferson Davis as dictator. Soon, though, Daniel became one of Davis's loudest critics, arguing he was not aggressive enough in waging war and that many of the Confederacy's generals were incompetent. He served as a staff officer under General John B. Floyd and later A. P. Hill, suffering one wound in battle and another in a duel. He died in 1865.
Mon, 19 Mar 2018 17:41:38 EST]]>
/Campbell_Archibald_W_1833-1899 Fri, 28 Jul 2017 15:52:48 EST <![CDATA[Campbell, Archibald W. (1833–1899)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Campbell_Archibald_W_1833-1899 Archibald W. Campbell was a journalist, abolitionist, and Republican Party leader. Born in Ohio, he grew up in western Virginia and studied law in New York, where he met the abolitionist and future secretary of state William H. Seward. Campbell followed Seward into the Republican Party and in 1856 purchased the Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, making it the most influential Virginia newspaper outside Richmond. During the American Civil War (1861–1865) Campbell helped lead the movement for the creation of West Virginia but fell out with many Republican Party leaders after the war. He never sought public office and died in 1899.
Fri, 28 Jul 2017 15:52:48 EST]]>
/_Private_Jails_The_Liberator_December_27_1834 Mon, 10 Jul 2017 10:21:13 EST <![CDATA["Private Jails," The Liberator (December 27, 1834)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Private_Jails_The_Liberator_December_27_1834 Mon, 10 Jul 2017 10:21:13 EST]]> /_Mysteries_of_a_Shamble_New-York_Tribune_July_15_1861 Mon, 10 Jul 2017 10:15:46 EST <![CDATA["Mysteries of a Shamble," New-York Tribune (July 15, 1861)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Mysteries_of_a_Shamble_New-York_Tribune_July_15_1861 Mon, 10 Jul 2017 10:15:46 EST]]> /Blackford_William_1801-April_1864 Tue, 09 May 2017 16:31:48 EST <![CDATA[Blackford, William (1801–1864)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Blackford_William_1801-April_1864 William Blackford was a journalist and diplomat. Born in Maryland, he moved to Fredericksburg in 1825 to practice law. From 1828 to 1841 he owned the Fredericksburg Political Arena and Literary Messenger, which supported the Whig Party. With his wife, Mary Berkeley Minor Blackford, he was active in the colonization movement. From 1842 to 1845 he served as chargé d'affaires to the Republic of New Granada, helping to negotiate a new postal treaty. In 1846, he purchased a paper in Lynchburg, which he sold in 1850 to become postmaster. In 1853 he became the cashier of the new Exchange Bank of Lynchburg, a position he held until his death. Blackford supported the Confederacy during the American Civil War (1861–1865) and served as the Confederate States Treasury agent in Lynchburg. He died in 1864.
Tue, 09 May 2017 16:31:48 EST]]>
/_Washington_s_Runaway_Slave_The_Liberator_August_22_1845 Fri, 21 Apr 2017 14:48:40 EST <![CDATA["Washington's Runaway Slave," The Liberator (August 22, 1845)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Washington_s_Runaway_Slave_The_Liberator_August_22_1845 Fri, 21 Apr 2017 14:48:40 EST]]> /Dure_Leon_S_1907-1993 Thu, 06 Oct 2016 12:41:59 EST <![CDATA[Dure, Leon S. (1907–1993)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Dure_Leon_S_1907-1993 Leon S. Dure created the concept of freedom of choice of association, a philosophy embraced by segregationists after Massive Resistance—the state policies designed to oppose the desegregation of public schools—faded in 1959. Born in Macon, Georgia, Dure served as managing editor of the Macon Telegraph, White House correspondent for the Washington Post, managing editor of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and executive news editor of the Twin City Sentinel in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He retired in 1949 and returned to Virginia, where he lived on a farm in Albemarle County. During the desegregation crisis that followed the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education (1954), Dure publicized freedom of choice of association as a way to avoid the large-scale integration of public schools. Students could choose which school to attend, with white students receiving state-tuition grants to attend segregated private schools. While not entirely new, the idea was particularly palatable to suburban white voters. Dure's strategy persisted until the 1960s, when it received two key legal defeats in Griffin v. State Board of Education (1964) and Green v. County School Board of New Kent County (1968). Dure died in Florida in 1993.
Thu, 06 Oct 2016 12:41:59 EST]]>
/Hunter_William_d_1761 Wed, 31 Aug 2016 10:35:39 EST <![CDATA[Hunter, William (d. 1761)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Hunter_William_d_1761 William Hunter was official printer to the Virginia colony (1750–1761), publisher of the Virginia Gazette (1751–1761), deputy postmaster general for the British North American colonies (1753–1761), and justice of the peace on the York County Court (1759–1761). Born in Yorktown, Hunter apprenticed to Virginia's first public printer, William Parks, and upon the latter's death in 1750, took over the position at a higher salary. His tenure was arguably the pinnacle of the colonial-era printing monopoly, with Hunter providing faithful service to the colonial administration. In 1753, he and his friend Benjamin Franklin won appointment as deputy postmasters of the colonies, with Hunter responsible for areas south of Annapolis, Maryland. The next year, Hunter became ill while inspecting postal routes with Franklin, and remained ill for several years, spending some of that time in England. In his absence, the printing office was run by John Stretch, whose loyalties seemed to lean away from the lieutenant governor and toward the General Assembly, creating royal pressure for Hunter to return to Virginia. Hunter's business flourished, but he died suddenly in 1761. His life has been seen as an exemplar of the role of familial connections in Virginia, in that his brother's merchant connections and associates gained through his sisters' marriages proved essential to his success and his legacy.
Wed, 31 Aug 2016 10:35:39 EST]]>
/Daniels_Edward_Dwight_1828-1916 Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:59:11 EST <![CDATA[Daniels, Edward D. (1828–1916)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Daniels_Edward_Dwight_1828-1916 Edward D. Daniels was an agricultural reformer, newspaper editor, and an active member of the Republican Party. The Massachusetts-born Daniels worked as a geologist in Wisconsin, helped mount expeditions to establish abolitionist colonies in Kansas, served in the U.S. Army, and was involved in manufacturing in the Midwest before settling in Virginia in 1868, at his doctor's recommendation. That same year he bought Gunston Hall, the onetime home of George Mason, and tried to transform the plantation into a cooperative community of independent farmers and artisans. He hired African American laborers, instructed them in scientific farming techniques, and paid them relatively high wages. The venture was not profitable, however, and he sold the property in 1891, retaining a small piece of land for himself. Daniels extended his ambitions for reform into politics: he edited and published the Richmond Evening State Journal in support of the Republican Party, twice ran for office (and was twice defeated), and supported the nascent Readjusters. Daniels's financial troubles often thwarted his reform efforts, but a primary school for black children that he helped found survived into the 1920s. He died at his farm near Gunston Hall in 1916 and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery.
Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:59:11 EST]]>
/Copeland_Walter_Scott_1856-1928 Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:50:49 EST <![CDATA[Copeland, Walter S. (1856–1928)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Copeland_Walter_Scott_1856-1928 Walter S. Copeland owned or co-owned important newspapers across Virginia including the Danville Register, Richmond Evening Leader, Roanoke Times, and Newport News Daily Press. Held in high esteem by his journalistic peers, he served four terms as president of the Virginia Press Association. Copeland supported Progressive reforms to improve welfare and education programs for poor whites, which he viewed as necessary for social order. He opposed the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s and supported what later became Hampton University. Yet Copeland became a strong backer of harsh segregation laws in his later years. He joined forces with John Powell, founder of the Anglo-Saxon Clubs, and supported the 1924 Virginia Act to Preserve Racial Integrity. Two years later Copeland and his newspapers crusaded for what became the Massenburg Bill, the strongest segregation law in the United States.
Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:50:49 EST]]>
/Cameron_William_Evelyn_1842-1927 Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:41:05 EST <![CDATA[Cameron, William E. (1842–1927)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Cameron_William_Evelyn_1842-1927 William E. Cameron was a veteran of the American Civil War (1861–1865), a journalist, a governor of Virginia (1882–1886), and a member of the Convention of 1901–1902. Cameron served in the Confederate army during the war, then worked as a journalist in Petersburg and Richmond, supporting the Conservative Party. Beginning in 1876, he was elected to three consecutive two-year terms as the mayor of Petersburg. Later in the 1870s he began to side with the Readjusters, a faction that sought to adjust the payment of Virginia's prewar debt. He won the governorship as a nominee of the Readjuster-Republican coalition in 1881. Cameron and the Readjusters issued a series of reforms, including repealing the poll tax, but his aggressive use of political patronage angered voters and his opponents. The revived Democratic Party, capitalizing on white supremacy and the electorate's unease over Cameron's tactics, took over the General Assembly in 1883. Cameron left politics after completing his term, but was elected in 1901 to a state constitutional convention. He played an influential role, advocating provisions that strengthened the governor's authority to discharge subordinate officials; defending legislative election of judges; and supporting reinstating the poll tax and other restrictions that disfranchised African American voters. Cameron returned to journalism in 1906, editing the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot until 1919. He died in Louisa County in 1927.
Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:41:05 EST]]>
/Brown_Thomas_Henry_1864-1952 Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:20:21 EST <![CDATA[Brown, Thomas H. (1864–1952)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Brown_Thomas_Henry_1864-1952 Thomas H. Brown was a civic leader of African American communities in Petersburg and Hopewell. A child laborer, Brown worked his way up the social and financial ladder by joining civic associations and learning the undertaker's trade. In 1893, he organized the People's Memorial Cemetery Association to save Petersburg's African American cemetery from deteriorating conditions and a possible foreclosure. Brown opened a funeral home in Hopewell about 1916 and remained involved with the locality during its World War I boom years. He was a civic leader in Petersburg and across the state for the rest of his life, continuing his involvement with the cemetery. The burial ground fell into disrepair after his death in 1952 but was revived after Petersburg took possession of it in 1986. Four years later People's Memorial Cemetery formally opened as a city-owned historic site.
Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:20:21 EST]]>
/Brown_Edward_Wellington_d_1929 Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:18:00 EST <![CDATA[Brown, Edward W. (d. 1929)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Brown_Edward_Wellington_d_1929 Edward W. Brown was a politician, editor, and minister. Born into slavery, he became his church's clerk at age twelve and later taught school in Prince George County. Brown was among the last successful African American politicians in the nineteenth century, serving as the county's commissioner of revenue from 1887 to 1895. He moved to Richmond the year after he left office, where he worked for the Grand Fountain United Order of True Reformers, a fraternal beneficiary organization. Eventually becoming editor of its weekly newspaper, the Reformer, Brown promoted the order's various enterprises while condemning the new segregation laws. The organization's finances collapsed in 1910, causing the removal of its officers. Brown became a Baptist preacher, but left the ministry in the mid-1920s to join his son's real estate and insurance agency in Norfolk. He died in 1929.
Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:18:00 EST]]>
/Bragg_George_Freeman_1863-1940 Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:02:48 EST <![CDATA[Bragg, George F. (1863–1940)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Bragg_George_Freeman_1863-1940 George F. Bragg was born into slavery and later became a journalist and Episcopal minister. Dismissed from divinity school, he began his public career working for Readjuster leader William Mahone and establishing the weekly Petersburg Lancet. Bragg left politics in 1884 after divisiveness within the Readjuster Party. He returned to the seminary in 1885 and a few years later took over a struggling Norfolk congregation. Within five years he turned it into a self-supporting church. In 1888 he was ordained a priest at Saint Luke's Episcopal Church in Norfolk, making him only the twelfth black Episcopal priest in the United States. Bragg moved to Baltimore, Maryland, in 1891 where he revived another church, edited a monthly newspaper, the Church Advocate, and wrote books and pamphlets. He died in Baltimore in 1940.
Mon, 02 Nov 2015 09:02:48 EST]]>
/Anderson_Sherwood_1876-1941 Wed, 28 Oct 2015 09:27:38 EST <![CDATA[Anderson, Sherwood (1876–1941)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Anderson_Sherwood_1876-1941 Sherwood Anderson was a poet, novelist, essayist, businessman, and newspaper editor most often associated with the American Midwest. His notable collection of related short stories, Winesburg, Ohio (1919), examined small-town life in the late 1800s. Anderson moved in the highest of American literary circles, entertaining—and to some extent even influencing—such writers as William Faulkner (about whom Anderson wrote the short story "A Meeting South") and Ernest Hemingway, who parodied Anderson in his debut novel The Torrents of Spring (1926). Anderson moved to southwestern Virginia in 1926, where he spent the rest of his years chronicling life in the depression-era South.
Wed, 28 Oct 2015 09:27:38 EST]]>
/Newspapers_in_Virginia_During_the_Civil_War_Confederate Tue, 27 Oct 2015 16:40:28 EST <![CDATA[Newspapers in Virginia during the Civil War, Confederate]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Newspapers_in_Virginia_During_the_Civil_War_Confederate Confederate newspapers in Virginia during the American Civil War (1861–1865) served as vital, if often flawed, sources of reporting on the conflict, as organs of national propaganda, and as venues in which to attack or defend the administration of Confederate president Jefferson Davis. At the start of the war, nearly every town in Virginia boasted a newspaper, with four dailies in Richmond alone. (A fifth began publishing in 1863.) These papers were staunchly partisan: the Richmond Enquirer endorsed the Democratic Party, the Richmond Whig cheered on the largely defunct Whig Party, and the Staunton Vindicator endorsed secession. During the war, they updated their readers on the Confederacy's military progress and relied on Northern papers when their own reporting failed. Along with its rivals, the Enquirer trumpeted victories and downplayed defeats, blurring the line between news and propaganda. The Richmond Examiner, meanwhile, under the editorship of John M. Daniel, became the loudest organ of dissent in the Confederate capital, its criticisms of President Davis turning more intense and more personal as the war dragged on. Propaganda from Virginia newspapers helped prop up Southern spirits early in the war, and it is likely that their political attacks eventually helped depress Confederate morale.
Tue, 27 Oct 2015 16:40:28 EST]]>
/Photography_During_the_Civil_War Tue, 27 Oct 2015 15:24:49 EST <![CDATA[Photography during the Civil War]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Photography_During_the_Civil_War During the course of the American Civil War (1861–1865), more than 3,000 individual photographers made war-related images. From Southerners' first pictures of Fort Sumter in April 1861 to Alexander Gardner's images of Richmond's ruined cityscape in April 1865, photographers covered nearly every major theater of military operations. They documented battlefields, soldiers' activities and movements, and the destructive effects the conflict had on civilians. Virginia and Virginians figured prominently in Civil War–era photography. Brothers Daniel and David Bendann, who began their careers in Richmond, for example, photographed noted Confederates, including Robert E. Lee, while scores of wartime images featured Virginia landmarks and landscapes.
Tue, 27 Oct 2015 15:24:49 EST]]>
/Davis_John_H_d_1896 Thu, 11 Jun 2015 14:50:22 EST <![CDATA[Davis, John H. (d. 1896)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Davis_John_H_d_1896 John H. Davis was an African American entrepreneur and newspaper publisher who advanced with the economic boom created by Roanoke's establishment in the 1880s and then lost much of his wealth in the financial panic of 1893. It is unknown whether Davis was born free or into slavery, but in 1869 he owned property in Lynchburg. In January 1879 he purchased land in the Roanoke County community of Big Lick, soon to become the railroad center Roanoke. His business holdings expanded over the next thirteen years, ultimately solely owning thirty lots, the four-story Davis Hall, and the Roanoke Weekly Press published in the Davis Building. Davis attended two state conventions as a supporter of the Readjuster Party, and had two failed bids for city council. At his peak, his real and personal property valued between $50,000 and $75,000. Davis's holdings shrank rapidly during the economic bust of the mid-1890s, and he died in 1896.
Thu, 11 Jun 2015 14:50:22 EST]]>
/Roanoke_Weekly_Press Thu, 29 Jan 2015 16:28:55 EST <![CDATA[Roanoke Weekly Press]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Roanoke_Weekly_Press The Roanoke Weekly Press was Roanoke City's first black newspaper, founded early in 1891 by John H. Davis, a wealthy African American businessman, philanthropist, and Republican political activist. The paper first appeared as an afternoon daily called the Press; several weeks later, it was moved to a weekly publication schedule and renamed the Roanoke Weekly Press (RWP). The paper was staunchly Republican in political orientation, reflecting its readership's deep antipathy toward the all-white Democratic Party in late nineteenth-century Virginia. Davis owned and edited the paper, which he published in different lengths on a periodic basis, often suspending publication for several months between issues. The only extant copy of the RWP is its fifth issue from 1892, which appeared on April 2 that year. Although some sources indicate the paper continued publication until 1897, it is more likely that it ceased operations in 1892. Davis left no personal or business papers behind, making details of his life difficult to discern. Even less is known about his newspaper, which remains an obscure and largely forgotten enterprise.
Thu, 29 Jan 2015 16:28:55 EST]]>
/Riddleberger_Harrison_H_1843-1890 Thu, 08 Jan 2015 16:16:40 EST <![CDATA[Riddleberger, Harrison H. (1843–1890)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Riddleberger_Harrison_H_1843-1890 Harrison H. Riddleberger was a Confederate veteran from Shenandoah County who helped settle Virginia's controversial prewar debt crisis in the 1880s. After the American Civil War (1861–1865), he became a newspaper publisher and a politician. He served in the House of Delegates for two terms as a Conservative (1871–1875) before entering the Senate of Virginia in 1879 as a Readjuster. In 1882 the assembly passed the Riddleberger Act and two other bills that refinanced two-thirds of the public debt (West Virginia was allocated the remaining one-third) with new lower-interest bonds and helped convert a treasury deficit into a $1.5 million surplus. Although subsequent legislation modified Riddleberger's law in detail, the act ended a decade of divisive politics about the public debt. Taking a seat in the U.S. Senate the next year, he caucused with the Republicans. While he was serving in Washington, the Readjusters splintered and Riddleberger later became a Democrat. Prone to depression and excessive drinking, he held a reputation as an eccentric and even engaged in two duels on the same day. He died in his home less than a year after his Senate term ended.
Thu, 08 Jan 2015 16:16:40 EST]]>
/Bryan_Joseph_III_1904-1993 Tue, 04 Nov 2014 10:27:56 EST <![CDATA[Bryan, Joseph III (1904–1993)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Bryan_Joseph_III_1904-1993 Joseph Bryan was a journalist and writer who was born into the influential Bryan family of newspaper publishers and industrialists. He edited and wrote for many national publications, including the family-owned Richmond News Leader and Chicago Daily Journal, as well as Parade, Time, Fortune, Town and Country, Reader's Digest, the Saturday Evening Post, and the New Yorker. He wrote numerous articles on travel, humor, and celebrities, some of which evolved into books or reappeared as portions of his books. He served in all three branches of the U.S. military: first as a lieutenant in the field artillery of the army following his graduation from Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey, then in the navy during World War II (1939–1945) as a lieutenant commander assigned to naval air combat intelligence in the Pacific, and later as a lieutenant colonel in the air force. He also worked for the Central Intelligence Agency from the late 1940s until 1953. He lived in Washington, D.C., and at Brook Hill, an ancestral home in Henrico County.
Tue, 04 Nov 2014 10:27:56 EST]]>
/Bryan_John_Stewart_1871-1944 Tue, 04 Nov 2014 10:26:26 EST <![CDATA[Bryan, John Stewart (1871–1944)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Bryan_John_Stewart_1871-1944 John Stewart Bryan was a Richmond newspaper publisher and president of the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg. The son of a wealthy and influential newspaper publisher, Bryan went into the family business after briefly practicing law. In 1900, he began work as a reporter at the Richmond Dispatch, owned by his father, Joseph Bryan, and within a year was vice president of the holding company. Upon his father's death in 1908, he became president of the company and owner and publisher of the Richmond News Leader. There he hired as editor Douglas Southall Freeman, who went on to win two Pulitzer Prizes for his historical writing. In 1934, Bryan became president of the College of William and Mary and worked to broaden the school's curriculum and strengthening its reputation as a liberal arts college. Problems at one of the school's affiliates, in Norfolk, however, caused a suspension of the college's national accreditation in 1941. Citing poor health and the need for new leadership, Bryan resigned in 1942 and died in Richmond two years later.
Tue, 04 Nov 2014 10:26:26 EST]]>
/No_Action_Taken_Lively_Discussion_of_the_Colored_Pulpit-Press_Controversy Tue, 16 Sep 2014 14:35:00 EST <![CDATA["No Action Taken: Lively Discussion of the Colored Pulpit-Press Controversy" from the Roanoke Times (May 29, 1891)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/No_Action_Taken_Lively_Discussion_of_the_Colored_Pulpit-Press_Controversy Tue, 16 Sep 2014 14:35:00 EST]]> /_Bloodthirsty_Vest_from_The_Roanoke_Times_March_10_1891 Mon, 15 Sep 2014 10:05:26 EST <![CDATA["Bloodthirsty Vest." from the Roanoke Times (March 10, 1891)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Bloodthirsty_Vest_from_The_Roanoke_Times_March_10_1891 Mon, 15 Sep 2014 10:05:26 EST]]> /_Jno_H_Davis_from_The_Roanoke_Daily_Times_July_21_1896 Mon, 15 Sep 2014 10:03:50 EST <![CDATA["Jno. H. Davis" from the Roanoke Daily Times (July 21, 1896)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Jno_H_Davis_from_The_Roanoke_Daily_Times_July_21_1896 Mon, 15 Sep 2014 10:03:50 EST]]> /_The_Press_in_Trouble_from_The_Roanoke_Times_May_24_1891 Mon, 15 Sep 2014 09:48:08 EST <![CDATA["The Press in Trouble" from the Roanoke Times (May 24, 1891)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_The_Press_in_Trouble_from_The_Roanoke_Times_May_24_1891 Mon, 15 Sep 2014 09:48:08 EST]]> /Delany_Martin_R_1812-1885 Wed, 06 Aug 2014 16:38:16 EST <![CDATA[Delany, Martin R. (1812–1885)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Delany_Martin_R_1812-1885 Martin R. Delany was an African American abolitionist, writer, editor, doctor, and politician. Born in Charles Town, Virginia (now West Virginia), he was the first black field officer in the United States Army, serving as a major during and after the American Civil War (1861–1865), and was among the first black nationalists. A fiercely independent thinker and wide-ranging writer, he coedited with Frederick Douglass the abolitionist newspaper North Star and later penned a manifesto calling for black emigration from the United States to Central America. He also authored Blake; or, The Huts of America, a serial publication about a fugitive slave who, in the tradition of Nat Turner, organizes insurrection. In his later life, Delany was a judge and an unsuccessful candidate for lieutenant governor of South Carolina. Despite all this, he remains relatively unknown. "His was a magnificent life," W. E. B. Du Bois wrote in 1936, "and yet, how many of us have heard of him?" Historians have tended to pigeonhole Delany's contributions, emphasizing his more radical views (which were celebrated in the 1970s), while giving less attention to the extraordinary complexity of his career.
Wed, 06 Aug 2014 16:38:16 EST]]>
/Byrd_Harry_Flood_Jr_1914- Sun, 22 Jun 2014 10:47:25 EST <![CDATA[Byrd, Harry Flood Jr. (1914–2013)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Byrd_Harry_Flood_Jr_1914- Harry F. Byrd Jr. represented Virginia in the United States Senate from 1965 to 1983 after serving seventeen years in the Senate of Virginia. A member of one of Virginia's most powerful political families, Byrd took over the Senate seat from his father in 1965. Byrd, however, was also something of a dissident, quitting the Democratic Party in 1970 to run as an Independent. In addition to his career in politics, Byrd followed his father into journalism as well, serving as editor and publisher of the Winchester Star from 1935 to 1981 and as publisher of the Harrisonburg Daily News-Record from 1939 to 2001. He died in 2013.
Sun, 22 Jun 2014 10:47:25 EST]]>
/Chambers_Joseph_Lenoir_Jr_1891-1970 Sun, 15 Jun 2014 06:49:46 EST <![CDATA[Chambers, Lenoir (1891–1970)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Chambers_Joseph_Lenoir_Jr_1891-1970 Lenoir Chambers, newspaper editor and author, is best known for his opposition to the South's Massive Resistance to racial integration of the public schools, a position he maintained from early in 1954 to 1959. During his life and his career, he sought to educate readers about perceived injustices toward African Americans and workers throughout the South, and urged fairer treatment of them. When Virginia's political leaders closed the state's public schools in 1958 to avoid federally mandated school integration, Chambers wrote a series of articles in the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot that opposed the closings. His essays earned him a Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Editorial Writing in 1960.
Sun, 15 Jun 2014 06:49:46 EST]]>
/Cromwell_John_Wesley_1846-1927 Wed, 04 Jun 2014 17:23:35 EST <![CDATA[Cromwell, John Wesley (1846–1927)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Cromwell_John_Wesley_1846-1927 John Wesley Cromwell was an educator, lawyer, and journalist. Born enslaved in Portsmouth, he became free after his mother, who was manumitted in 1849, purchased and freed his father and siblings. The family settled in Philadelphia, where Cromwell attended the Institute for Colored Youth, a Quaker school. He taught at several schools between 1865 and 1871, some of which were located in Portsmouth and Norfolk County. Cromwell acquired his law degree at Howard University and likely was the first African American attorney to argue before the Interstate Commerce Commission. He also published and edited the People's Advocate, a weekly newspaper, from 1876 to 1884; established a series of intellectual associations, such as the Negro American Society and the Bethel Literary and Historical Association; and helped found the American Negro Academy. He resumed his career in education in 1899. Cromwell was a strong advocate for industrial and agricultural education, but later came to believe that African American leaders should also seek political solutions to racial problems. He died at his Washington, D.C., residence in 1927.
Wed, 04 Jun 2014 17:23:35 EST]]>
/Freeman_Douglas_Southall_1886-1953 Tue, 27 May 2014 07:17:31 EST <![CDATA[Freeman, Douglas Southall (1886–1953)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Freeman_Douglas_Southall_1886-1953 Douglas Southall Freeman was a biographer, a newspaper editor, a nationally renowned military analyst, and a pioneering radio broadcaster. He won the Pulitzer Prize twice: the first, in 1935, for his four-volume biography of the Confederate general Robert E. Lee; and the second, posthumously in 1958, for his six-volume biography of George Washington, with a seventh volume written by John Alexander Carroll and Mary Wells Ashworth after Freeman's death in 1953. The son of a Confederate veteran, Freeman is best known as a historian of the American Civil War (1861–1865) and, in particular, of the high command of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia. His description of Lee, Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, and their compatriots as "men of principles unimpeachable, of valour indescribable" for some has suggested that his work was influenced by the Lost Cause view of the war that was in part founded by his former neighbor, Jubal A. Early. In reality, Freeman's admiration for the Confederates never influenced his historical conclusions.
Tue, 27 May 2014 07:17:31 EST]]>
/Jaffé_Louis_Isaac_ca_1888-1950 Sun, 23 Mar 2014 09:11:48 EST <![CDATA[Jaffé, Louis I. (ca. 1888–1950)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Jaffé_Louis_Isaac_ca_1888-1950 Louis I. Jaffé was the longtime editor of the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot (1919–1950) who earned renown for his sponsorship and promotion of Virginia's antilynching law. A lifelong liberal and civil rights activist, Jaffé championed reforms that sought to improve the daily lives of African Americans, especially those in Hampton Roads. In 1929, he became Virginia's first Pulitzer Prize winner, receiving the award for Distinguished Editorial Writing for the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot's antilynching advocacy.
Sun, 23 Mar 2014 09:11:48 EST]]>
/Muse_Benjamin_1898-1986 Fri, 28 Feb 2014 15:54:51 EST <![CDATA[Muse, Benjamin (1898–1986)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Muse_Benjamin_1898-1986 Benjamin Muse, a journalist based in Manassas, Virginia, emerged as one of the state's most prominent white liberals during the period of the Massive Resistance movement, which opposed the U.S. Supreme Court's 1954 decision outlawing segregation in public schools, Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas. Through a weekly column in the Washington Post, Muse criticized what he perceived to be the undemocratic practices of the Byrd Organization, the Virginia political machine led by U.S. senator and former governor Harry F. Byrd Sr., a Democrat. Muse also charged that Massive Resistance represented a desperate gamble by rural leaders to preserve the state's one-party system. Throughout the five-year crisis, Muse insisted that Virginia must comply with the Supreme Court's ruling, and he championed the efforts of white moderates and liberals from the cities and suburbs who opposed the state's plan, which amounted to abandoning public education rather than accepting any degree of racial integration. In 1959, after federal and state courts invalidated Virginia's school-closing scheme, Muse became the director of the Southern Leadership Project in order to spread the message of compliance with Brown to other states across the region.
Fri, 28 Feb 2014 15:54:51 EST]]>
/Parks_William_d_1750 Tue, 18 Feb 2014 12:24:05 EST <![CDATA[Parks, William (d. 1750)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Parks_William_d_1750 William Parks was the first authorized printer in Virginia, the first "public printer" for the colonial government (1730–1750), publisher of the first authoritative collection of Virginia's laws (1733), and proprietor of its first newspaper, the Virginia Gazette (1736–1750). Born in England, Parks began producing official documents for the Maryland colony in 1726 and became its official printer the next year, with responsibility for all government publishing. In 1728, he expanded his business to Virginia, working as the public printer for both colonies from 1730 until 1737, when Maryland authorities accused him of neglecting his work and terminated his contract. In Virginia, his work was praised and it often flattered the local gentry. More importantly, it marked a shift by the colonial government from manuscript to print media while also enabling the growth of a public sphere in Virginia, especially through the publication of the Virginia Gazette. Responding to a story in that newspaper, a member of the House of Burgesses accused Parks of libel in 1742, but the General Assembly determined the story was true and so dismissed the charges. In the meantime, Parks published the Virginia Almanack, served as Williamsburg's postmaster, and built a large estate of property in Maryland and Virginia. His paper mill was the first south of Pennsylvania. Parks died in 1750 aboard a ship bound for England, where he was buried.
Tue, 18 Feb 2014 12:24:05 EST]]>
/Dabney_Virginius_1901-1995 Mon, 23 Sep 2013 14:20:28 EST <![CDATA[Dabney, Virginius (1901–1995)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Dabney_Virginius_1901-1995 Virginius Dabney was a journalist, writer, historian, and recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing. As the longtime editor of the Richmond Times-Dispatch (1936–1969), he earned a name, at least at first, as a liberal reformer who targeted religious fundamentalists, prohibitionists, and machine politicians. His 1929 biography of James Cannon, the Methodist bishop and prohibitionist, was so scathing it did not find a publisher until 1949, after Cannon's death. His inclinations, however, often put him in disagreement with his publisher and with U.S. senator Harry F. Byrd and his Democratic Party machine, the Byrd Organization. In the 1930s, Dabney advocated a federal antilynching law and opposed the poll tax, but following World War II (1939–1945) he generally supported segregation, a position that increasingly put him at odds with the liberal mainstream and the burgeoning civil rights movement. In 1956, Byrd called for massive resistance against the U.S. Supreme Court-mandated desegregation of public schools, and Dabney reluctantly went along. His reputation among liberals plummeted. After retiring from the Times-Dispatch, he concentrated on writing history, completing a large one-volume history of Virginia in 1971 and a defense of Thomas Jefferson against accusations that he had children with the enslaved Sally Hemings.
Mon, 23 Sep 2013 14:20:28 EST]]>
/Bouldin_Powhatan_1830-1907 Wed, 04 Sep 2013 17:50:16 EST <![CDATA[Bouldin, Powhatan (1830–1907)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Bouldin_Powhatan_1830-1907 Powhatan Bouldin was a Democratic journalist who covered the Danville Riot of 1883. The son of a congressman, Bouldin served in a series of Charlotte County public offices before purchasing a local Danville newspaper in 1865. He ran the weekly Danville Times until illness forced his retirement in 1894. The most notable event during his journalistic career was the Danville Riot, which resulted in the deaths of four African Americans. As editor of the Danville Times, Bouldin helped shape the pro-Democratic spin on the violence that spurred the downfall of local Readjuster Party officeholders in Danville and helped rally white supremacist Democrats to reclaim political power throughout Virginia.
Wed, 04 Sep 2013 17:50:16 EST]]>
/Brooks_Robert_Peel_1853-1882 Tue, 23 Jul 2013 14:09:58 EST <![CDATA[Brooks, Robert Peel (1853–1882)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Brooks_Robert_Peel_1853-1882 Robert Peel Brooks was one of Richmond's first African American lawyers and a Republican Party leader. Born into slavery, he was manumitted in 1862 and graduated from Howard University's law school in 1875. While practicing law in Richmond he also edited the Richmond Virginia Star. Brooks became involved in politics and was elected secretary of the Republican State Central Committee in 1880. Initially siding with the Funders, who advocated full payment of the state's prewar debt, he came to support the Readjusters, who sought adjustment of the debt, because they promoted black political participation. He contracted typhoid fever in 1882 and died not long before his twenty-ninth birthday.
Tue, 23 Jul 2013 14:09:58 EST]]>
/Bagby_George_William_1828-1883 Mon, 08 Jul 2013 10:44:51 EST <![CDATA[Bagby, George William (1828–1883)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Bagby_George_William_1828-1883 George William Bagby was a licensed physician, editor, journalist, essayist, and humorist. He is best remembered as the editor who, on the advent of the American Civil War (1861–1865), turned the Southern Literary Messenger from a respected literary journal into a propagandistic tool that endorsed secession and the Confederate cause. After the war, Bagby attempted but failed to make a living as a humorist. As assistant to the secretary of the commonwealth—which, by law, also made him state librarian—Bagby wrote his most well-regarded essay, "The Old Virginia Gentleman" (1877). Many of his essays reflect his personal conflicts with Virginia and the South: at times he is objective, even critical; at others he is sentimental and celebrates the "old days" of a better (pre-Civil War) Virginia.
Mon, 08 Jul 2013 10:44:51 EST]]>
/_Sambo_and_the_Ass_by_Basil_L_Gildersleeve_April_5_1864 Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:25:48 EST <![CDATA["Sambo and the Ass" by Basil L. Gildersleeve (April 5, 1864)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Sambo_and_the_Ass_by_Basil_L_Gildersleeve_April_5_1864 Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:25:48 EST]]> /_Miscegenation_by_Basil_L_Gildersleeve_April_18_1864 Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:12:03 EST <![CDATA["Miscegenation" by Basil L. Gildersleeve (April 18, 1864)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Miscegenation_by_Basil_L_Gildersleeve_April_18_1864 Wed, 27 Feb 2013 10:12:03 EST]]> /Printing_in_Colonial_Virginia Fri, 20 Jan 2012 13:14:59 EST <![CDATA[Printing in Colonial Virginia]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Printing_in_Colonial_Virginia Printing came to Virginia relatively late in its colonial development. For more than a century after its founding, the colony's governors deemed printing a destabilizing influence to the standing order and actively opposed introducing printing into their dominion. Often that resistance came at the order of their superiors in London. Thus when William Parks was finally authorized to produce imprints for the government in 1728, his commission was limited. He could produce little more than what the government required. Still, the availability of the few allowed imprints, such as his Virginia Gazette and Virginia Almanack, created a growing market for imprints produced in Williamsburg. That growth wrought a conflict for Virginia's solitary press between the demands of that new market and the needs of the government. After 1750, Parks's successors—William Hunter and Joseph Royle—faced these diverging interests with increasing difficulty. Hunter was able to maintain the governor's control of the press only by replacing his office staff, while Royle was facing the imminent arrival of a competitor when he died in 1766. Royle's passing marked the end of the colonial printing monopoly. Multiple press offices would become the norm in Virginia, just as resistance to imperial authority sparked a revolution.
Fri, 20 Jan 2012 13:14:59 EST]]>