Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Where the Newspapers Were

Randall Stephens

My friend Leslie Graham just sent me a link to a wonderful map resource: "Data Visualization: Journalism's Voyage West." Part of Stanford University's Rural West Initiative, the site tracks the spread of newspapers into the American interior and the West. "With the American newspaper under stress from changing economics, technology and consumer behavior," notes the introduction, "it's easy to forget how ubiquitous and important they are in society. For this data visualization, we have taken the directory of US newspaper titles compiled by the Library of Congress' Chronicling America project--nearly 140,000 publications in all--and plotted them over time and space."


Unknown said...

That is super cool. It took me a couple of minutes to realize, though, that you can use the arrows to see the map year by year, and not just look a the years highlighted on the timeline.

PW said...

Imagine a day when a "scoop" was within the realms of a once-a-day, or max a twice-a-day, news cycle! When almost everyone got their news from the daily paper, and when Pulitzer, Hearst and co were waging circulation wars.

Does anyone know of a couple of insightful books on the 'glory days' of the American newspaper?

Unknown said...

_American Journalism_, Frank Luther Mott, 1947. Covers 1690-1940. He also has several volumes on magazines and _The Golden Multitude_, about bestselling books in American history.

PW said...

Thanks, Dan. I think I might check out Home Town News: William Allen White and the Emporia Gazette, by Sally Foreman Griffith, as well.

I appreciate your wisdom, as ever.