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Founded in the horse and buggy days, The Carnegie Herald is Carnegie's oldest privately-owned business still in existence today. The Herald was started by J.S. Fischer, with C.W. Turner as editor and proprietor and the first issue of The Carnegie Herald came off a chain driven Vaughn Ideal press in May 1903, four years before statehood when Carnegie was becoming a thriving trading post on the banks of the Washita River in western Oklahoma.
All of the type was set by hand in a frame building on South Broadway. The paper was sold to J.S. Fischer July 8, 1905. Shortly after 1905, when P.C. Dawson became owner, the Herald came out as The Carnegie Quill, but the townspeople objected so strenuously to the new title that it was dropped and the publication reappeared as The Carnegie Herald, the name it still remains.
M.L. Milford became the next owner in 1907 to 1910. It was during his ownership, in the latter part of 1907, that the newspaper moved to Main Street in the back end of the drugstore, where it occupied a space about 20 by 25 feet. From 1910 to 1917, J.C. Newman owned the paper. It was he who built the 25 by 40 foot frame building on East Main Street where the paper was housed until 1922. Newman operated the newspaper until February 1917 when Harry Jolly, a printer with 12 years experience, took over the helm and started the development of the Herald into one of the state's leading community newspapers.
One year later, R.S. Jolly joined his brother in the business taking over the mechanical part of the work. When B.W. "Doc" Jolly came back from World War II in 1919, he became associated with his brothers in publishing the Herald. Charles Jolly, the youngest of the four brothers, just "grew up in the paper." When Harry Jolly and J.H. Cunningham bought the Herald 1917, the equipment consisted of a Hoe press, an 8 by 12 Chandler and Price, and a 25 inch cutter. A gasoline engine provided the power since there was no electricity. Type was set by hand for the small weekly, which was four pages of home print and four pages of patent printing, bought from the Western Newspaper Union. Copy was still being handset in 1919, but all the copy that could be sent to Anadarko was set by machine there.
The March 19, 1919, edition was the first one in which Mr. Cunningham's name was left off the masthead. The next move for the Herald came the week of September 13, 1922 to South Broadway, the original location. However, the original building had burned. In the meantime, a new building had been erected. This was the final move of the paper until 67 years later.
The Jolly brothers published the Herald until 1955 when the newspaper was purchased by Roy McCurley on October 15. The retiring Jolly brothers stepped out of the picture with a great deal of reluctance, deeply indebted and forever grateful to the citizens of the community who had been responsible for the Herald's growth. During their ownership the Herald won the prestigious "Sweepstakes" awards in 1953 and 1955, the highest honor given to a state newspaper.
During McCurley's ownership of the newspaper printing industry changed over from lead type setting to compugraphic typesetting machines. Roy ran the business for 23 years as the March 1, 1978 edition of the Herald announced the sale of the newspaper to Bill and Sherry Frame, a Cordell couple. Sherry Frame, announced the sale of the newspaper effective September 1, 1986 to Mountain View's Leon and Jyl Hobbs. The Hobbs family have owned and operated the Mountain View News since 1979 and still publish the newspaper today.
Technology exploded during the Hobbs era ownership of both newspapers when the first Apple Computers and laser printers were purchased. They were also associated with Southwest Printing and moved the Herald to 14 W. Main Street in April 1989, where it resides today. Prior to Hobbs possession, the Herald was printed at the Lawton Times when Frames owned the newspaper. The Hobbs' switched printing plants to the Weatherford Daily News where they were having their other paper printed. The Hobbs family published the Herald for five years before selling it to the current owners Donald and Lori Cooper on June 27, 1991.
The digital age was implemented with a new Kodak DC260 camera and the developing of page negatives was the only use for the darkroom in the early 1990's. A drastic printing price increase in 1994 caused a move to the Chickasha Express for six weeks and unsatisfied publishers quickly found the Clinton Daily News as their new printing home. The Herald has been printed at Clinton since April 25, 1994.
With the ever-changing technology world, various Mac computers have been staples in the Herald publishing world since 2000. Today the Herald is composed on a Mac laptop computer. In March of 2007, the Herald joined the electronic highway by uploading their pages digitally to their printer in Clinton and posting the pages electronically for view on the world wide web. The owners added color photos and graphics to furthermore enhance an appealing, reader-friendly hometown newspaper. The doors to the darkroom were shut-down never to be opened again.
Today's Herald owners keep atop of all the latest technology. The Herald began over 100 years ago with a circulation of about 200 and today prints 1,500 copies per week. There have been 10 owners since it's inception.