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Encyclopedia Dubuque



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Telegraph Herald, 801 Central. Photo courtesy: Bob Reding

TELEGRAPH HERALD. The successor to Dubuque's many NEWSPAPERS. Dubuque's newspaper known as the Telegraph made its appearance on July 5, 1870, under the management of Patrick J. QUIGLEY and S. D. Rich, the editor. The city editor was John Stanford MURPHY.

Local support for the paper did not immediately appear. Quigley left the enterprise to Rich who sold his interest to M. M. Trumbull who remained in control only one week. James HUGHES, Trumbull's successor, operated the paper as a cooperative venture with his employees.

On June 10, 1871, Dennis MAHONY purchased the paper and established himself as editor and publisher. Realizing that he would be unable to manage the increasingly popular paper himself, Mahony brought Michael Brady into the venture as a business manager on April 1, 1872.

Unlike the earlier DUBUQUE VISITOR published by John KING, the Telegraph figured prominently in political issues of the day. It was an early and strong advocate of the Greenback Movement. The paper also supported the presidential campaign of Tilden in 1876.

Mahony's deteriorating health, beginning in 1877, prevented him from much office work until the spring of 1878. He resumed active editorial work during the campaign of 1878 until October when poor health forced his retirement. Mahony's death on November 5, 1879, led to the paper's publication being left to his heirs. M. C. Spear served as city editor, George Bechtel was the commercial editor, and John S. Murphy operated as managing editor.

The entry of Patrick J. Quigley into the history of the Telegraph begins the story of one of Dubuque's most prominent publishers. Quigley retired from the position of clerk of court in 1881 and joined the Telegraph as half owner. He helped publish the paper until 1882 when he sold his interest to Mahony's widow and moved to South Dakota. A drought brought him back to Dubuque where he joined the Democrat, a paper formed as a result of a strike at the Telegraph.

Former offices of the newspaper. Photo courtesy: Bob Reding.
The Democrat and Telegraph operated separately until 1884 when they merged. Quigley was president and manager of the new paper, the Telegraph-Democrat. With Quigley's emergence as the sole owner, the paper again became known as the Telegraph.

On October 27, 1901, the Telegraph and the Herald merged and issued the first issue of the Telegraph-Herald. (1) The Telegraph had reached its 31st year of existence on July 6th, 1901. It had absorbed eight other newspapers during this time. (2) While proud of the accomplishment, the editorial stated at the Herald was "lineal descendant" of the DUBUQUE VISITOR founded in 1836 and of the Dubuque Daily first published in 1854. (3) Quick to adopt modern ideas and machinery, the paper was called one of Iowa's finest. With circulation growing, the paper moved from rented space at 7th and Main into spacious quarters at 5th and Main. Quigley maintained an active role in the management of the paper until his death on February 23,1917. His successor was Fred W. WOODWARD.

Postcard carrying the picture of a newspaper carrier.

[[Image:thcarriercalendar.jpg|left|thumb|200px|Carrier Calendar. Photo courtesy: Bob Reding]

Woodward became president and general manager of the Telegraph-Herald in 1917. In 1927, he negotiated the merger of the paper with the Times Journal. The first issue of the paper printed in its present location at 8th and Bluff appeared on newsstands on July 14, 1930.

In 1965 the Woodward family purchased total control of the paper from the Quigley family. In 1966 newspaper publishing history was made when on February 29th the Telegraph Herald became the first to use the Goss Metro Offset double-wide press ever built. Today the Telegraph Herald is a division of WOODWARD COMMUNICATIONS, INC.

Image courtesy: Mike Day. Kendall C. Day family collection



1. "The Telegraph Herald," Telegraph-Herald, October 27, 1901

2. Ibid.

3. Ibid.