Fayette County Herald

Fayette County Herald (Washington Court House, Fayette County, Ohio) 1860-1??? [LCCN: sn85038145]
Digital Edition: November 6, 1862; May 10, 1866; March 14, 1867 – March 17, 1881

William Millikan established the Washington Herald in December 1858 in Washington Court House, the seat of Fayette County, Ohio. Two years later, the paper changed its title to the Fayette County Herald. It was the first regular Republican paper established in the county and influential in its support of Republican Party interests and in building up the town and county. In 1868, Millikan was joined in the printing office by his son, William W. Millikan.

According to its motto, the Herald was “Devoted to politics, general news and home interest.” Readers of the “Official County Paper” were kept abreast of local, state, and national news. Local items included business advertisements; court, real estate, sheriff and other legal notices; market and agricultural news; marriage and death notices; post office lists of unclaimed letters; local organization meeting notices; and church news. Not only did the Herald report on the happenings of Washington Court House and Fayette County, it also included news from other cities and counties around Ohio.

To support the Republican Party both locally and nationally, the Herald regularly published political speeches, editorials, news, and party platforms. During the election season, readers were urged to vote for Republican candidates—and to remind their neighbors to do the same. The Herald was in direct competition with the Democratic Ohio State Register and did not shy away from correcting—or criticizing—news reported by its competitor. In addition to political matter, the Herald also included items of more general interest, such as a Children’s Corner and works of poetry and other literature. This type of content became more common after the newspaper expanded from a four-page to an eight-page weekly in November 1879.

By the mid-1910s, the Herald had ceased publication, though its name would live on in the daily, nonpartisan edition that had been established by the Millikan family in 1885, known as the Washington Daily Herald. This daily paper, which the Millikans sold to Joseph H. Parker of the Ohio State Register in 1910, ran independently of their Republican weekly and eventually merged with another local paper, the Record-Republican to form the Washington C.H. Record-Herald which is still published today as the Record Herald.

Researched and written by Jenni Salamon