Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Signs of the Times - Part 1

It probably goes without saying that most, if not all of us are familiar with the basic layout of a contemporary newspaper. We know what to expect on any given day from any given section or page. The same could be said 100 years ago, even though many publications were significantly shorter (perhaps only the front and back of a single sheet of paper!).

What was included differed somewhat from today's publications a little too. Local papers had local news - but it might be a bit more intimate, especially in rural areas, where everyone knew everybody's business! Ads were not necessarily as vivid, and bylines (the author's name) may or may not exist on every article.

A seemingly popular trend were unattributed columns and snippets throughout publications that delivered news and commentary in a quick shot - one or two sentences. They might include anything from:

health and weather, to current events.

Or the economy and politics

These are common threads still followed today, though thrown together in tidbits on pages 3 and 4 of the February 17, 1910 edition of the Clay City Times. In their own ways, they reflect patterns from 100 years ago. Can you tell how and why? What makes these "reports" different from reports you might see in a modern-day newspaper?

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