Boston Herald

Boston Herald

Infobox Newspaper
name =

caption = The February 27, 2008 front page
of the "Boston Herald"
type = Daily newspaper
format = Tabloid
foundation = 1846
owners = Herald Media Inc.
publisher = Patrick J. Purcell
editor = Kevin Convey
price = US$0.50 daily
circulation = 185,832 daily, 108,816 Sunday in 2007 [Audit Bureau of Circulations [ "e-Circ"] data for six months ending 30 September 2007.]
headquarters = One Herald Square, Boston, Massachusetts 02205 USA
website = []
ISSN = 0738-5854 |

The "Boston Herald" is a tabloid-format daily newspaper, the smaller of the two big dailies in Boston, Massachusetts, United States.

Owned since 1994 by Patrick J. Purcell, a former News Corporation executive, the "Herald" is the largest independently owned newspaper in New England.


The "Herald"'s history can be traced back through two lineages, the "Daily Advertiser" and the old "Boston Herald", and two media moguls, William Randolph Hearst and Rupert Murdoch.

The old "Boston Herald"

The old "Boston Herald" was founded in 1846 by a group of Boston printers jointly under the name of John A. French & Company. The paper was published as a single two-sided sheet, selling for one cent. Its first editor, William O. Eaton, just 22 years old, said "The "Herald" will be independent in politics and religion; liberal, industrious, enterprising, critically concerned with literacy and dramatic matters, and diligent in its mission to report and analyze the news, local and global."

In 1847 the "Boston Herald" absorbed the Boston "American Eagle" and the Boston "Daily Times". [Citation | last = King | first = Moses | year = 1881 | title = "King's Hand-book of Boston ...: Profusely Illustrated" | pages = 268-269| publisher = "Moses King" | location = Cambridge, Ma | date = 1881]

"The Boston Herald and Boston Journal"

In October 1917 John H. Higgins the publisher and treasurer of the Boston Herald ["New York Times" "James H. Higgins, Retired Publisher; Also Was Treasurer of Boston Herald for 10 Years After Merger With Traveler DIES AT CENTRAL VALLEY In 1917 He Bought "The Boston Journal" and Consolidated It With The Herald". "The New York Times", page 13, August 1,, 1938.] bought out its next door neighbor "The Boston Journal" and created "The Boston Herald and Boston Journal" ["New York Times" "Boston Papers Merged.; Herald Absorbs The Journal and Will Use the Joint Title". "The New York Times", page 12, October 6, 1917.]

"The Boston Traveler"

Even earlier than the "Herald", the weekly "American Traveler" was founded in 1825 as a bulletin for stagecoach listings. [Citation | last = Stanwood | first = Edward | year = 1886 | title = "Boston Illustrated: Containing Full Descriptions of the City and Its Immediate Suburbs, Its Public Buildings and Institutions, Business Edifices, Parks and Avenues, Statues, Harbor and Islands, Etc., Etc. With Numerous Historical Allusions" | page = 104| publisher = "Houghton, Mifflin and Co, The Riverside Press| locations = Boston, Ma, New York, N.Y., Cambridge, Ma | date = 1886]

The "Boston Evening Traveler"

The "Boston Evening Traveler" was founded in 1845. The " Boston Evening Traveler" was the successor to the weekly "American Traveler" and the semi weekly "Boston Traveler". [Citation | last = King | first = Moses | year = 1881 | title = "King's Hand-book of Boston ...: Profusely Illustrated" | page = 267| publisher = "Moses King" | location = Cambridge, Ma | date = 1881]

In 1857 "The Boston Atlas", "The Boston Chronicle" and "The Evening Telegraph" were merged into the "Traveler". [Citation | last = King | first = Moses | year = 1881 | title = "King's Hand-book of Boston ...: Profusely Illustrated" | page = 267| publisher = "Moses King" | location = Cambridge, Ma | date = 1881]

In 1912, the "Herald" acquired the "Traveler", continuing to publish both under their own names. After a newspaper strike in 1967, Herald-Traveler Corp. suspended the afternoon "Traveler" and absorbed the evening edition into the Herald to create the "Boston Herald Traveler."

"The Boston Daily Advertiser"

The "Boston Daily Advertiser" was established in 1813 in Boston by Nathan Hale . The paper grew to prominence through the 19th century, taking over other Boston area papers. In 1832 The Advertiser took over control of The Boston Patriot, and then in 1840 it took over and absorbed The Boston Gazette. [Citation | The Encyclopaedia Britannica | year = 1911 | title = "The Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, Literature and General Information" | Volume = 19| page = 567| publisher = "Encyclopaedia Britannica" | location = New York, NY | date = 1911] The paper was purchased by William Randolph Hearst in 1917. In 1920 the "Advertiser" was merged with "The Boston Record", initially the combined newspaper was called the "Boston Advertiser" however when the combined newspaper became a illustrated tabloid in 1921 it was renamed "The Boston American". [Citation | first = Frederic | last = Hudson |year = 2000 | title = "American Journalism, 1690-1940" | pages = 661-662| publisher = "Routledge" | location = New York, N.Y. | date = 2000 ISBN 0415228948] Hearst Corp. continued using the name "Advertiser" for its Sunday paper until the early 1970s.

"The Boston Record"

On September 3, 1884 "The Boston Evening Record" was started by the "Boston Advertiser" as a campaign newspaper. The "Record" was so popular that it was made a permanent publication. [Citation | last = Stanwood | first = Edward | year = 1886 | title = "Boston Illustrated: Containing Full Descriptions of the City and Its Immediate Suburbs, Its Public Buildings and Institutions, Business Edifices, Parks and Avenues, Statues, Harbor and Islands, Etc., Etc. With Numerous Historical Allusions" | page = 104| publisher = "Houghton, Mifflin and Co, The Riverside Press| locations = Boston, Ma, New York, N.Y., Cambridge, Ma | date = 1886]

"The Boston American"

In 1904, William Randolph Hearst began publishing his own newspaper in Boston called "The American". Hearst ultimately ended up purchasing the "Daily Advertiser" in 1917. By 1938, the "Daily Advertiser" had changed to the "Daily Record", and "The American" had become the "Sunday Advertiser". A third paper owned by Hearst, called the "Afternoon Record", which had been renamed the "Evening American", merged in 1961 with the "Daily Record" to form the "Record American". The "Sunday Advertiser" and "Record American" would ultimately be merged in 1972 into "The Boston Herald Traveler" a line of newspapers that stretched back to the old "Boston Herald".

"The Boston Herald-Traveler"

In 1946, Herald-Traveler Corporation acquired Boston radio station WHDH. Two years later, WHDH-FM was licensed, and on November 26, 1957, WHDH-TV made its début as an ABC affiliate on channel 5. In 1961, WHDH-TV's affiliation switched to CBS. Herald-Traveler Corp. operated for years under temporary authority from the Federal Communications Commission stemming from controversy over luncheon meetings the newspaper's chief executive had with an FCC commissioner during the original licensing process (Some Boston broadcast historians accuse the "Boston Globe" of being covertly behind the proceeding. The "Herald Traveler" was Republican in sympathies, and the "Globe" then had a firm policy of not endorsing political candidates.) The FCC ordered comparative hearings, and in 1969 a competing applicant, Boston Broadcasters, Inc. was granted a construction permit to replace WHDH-TV on channel 5. Herald-Traveler Corp. fought the decision in court -- by this time, revenues from channel 5 were all but keeping the newspaper afloat -- but its final appeal ran out in 1972, and on March 19 WHDH-TV was forced to surrender channel 5 to the new WCVB-TV.

"The Boston Herald-Traveler and Record American"

Without a television station to subsidize the newspaper, the "Herald Traveler" was no longer able to remain in business, and the newspaper was sold to Hearst Corporation, which published the rival all-day newspaper, the "Record American". The two papers were merged to become an all-day paper called the "Boston Herald-Traveler and Record American" in the morning and "Record-American and Boston Herald Traveler" in the afternoon. The afternoon edition was soon dropped and the unwieldy name shortened to "Boston Herald American", with the Sunday edition called the "Sunday Herald Advertiser". The "Herald American" was printed in broadsheet format, and failed to target a particular readership; where the "Record-American" had been a typical city tabloid, the "Herald-Traveler" was a Republican paper.

Murdoch purchases "The Herald American"

The "Herald American" converted to tabloid format in September 1981, but Hearst faced steep declines in circulation and advertising. The company announced it would close the "Herald American" -- making Boston a one-newspaper town -- on December 3, 1982. When the deadline came, Australian media baron Rupert Murdoch was negotiating to buy the paper and save it. He closed on the deal after 30 hours of talks with Hearst and newspaper unions -- and five hours after Hearst had sent out notices to newsroom employees telling them they were terminated. The newspaper announced its own survival the next day with a full-page headline: "You Bet We're Alive!""Purcell Toasts 25th Anniversary of Herald's Survival". [ "NEPA Bulletin"] (Boston, Mass.), December 2007, page 11.]

"The Boston Herald" once again

Murdoch changed the paper's name back to the "Boston Herald". The "Herald" continued to grow over the ensuing decades, expanding its coverage and increasing its circulation until the early 21st century, when circulation and advertising revenue dropped -- part of a phenomenon affecting almost all American newspapers in an expanding age of free media.

Independent ownership

In February 1994, Murdoch's News Corporation was forced to sell the paper, in order that its subsidiary Fox Television Stations could legally consummate its purchase of Fox affiliate WFXT (Channel 25). Patrick Purcell, who was the publisher of the "Boston Herald" and a News Corporation executive, purchased the "Herald" and established it as an independent newspaper. Several years later, Purcell would give the "Herald" a suburban presence it never had by purchasing the money-losing Community Newspaper Company from Fidelity Investments. Although the companies merged under the banner of Herald Media, Inc., the suburban papers maintained their distinct editorial and marketing identity.

After years of operating profits at Community Newspaper and losses at the "Herald", Purcell in 2006 sold the suburban chain to newspaper conglomerate Liberty Group Publishing of Illinois, which soon after changed its name to GateHouse Media. The deal, which also saw GateHouse acquiring "The Patriot Ledger" and "The Enterprise" in south suburban Quincy and Brockton, netted $225 million for Purcell, who vowed to use the funds to clear the "Herald"'s debt and reinvest in the tabloid. [Bailey, Steve, and Robert Gavin. [ m/ "Herald's Owner to Sell Suburban Papers"] . "The Boston Globe", May 6, 2006.]


The "Herald"'s four Pulitzer Prizes for editorial writing, in 1924, 1927, 1949 and 1954, are among the most awarded to a single newspaper in the category. In 1957 Harry Trask was a young staff photographer at the "Traveler" when he was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for his photo sequence of the sinking of the SS Andrea Doria in July 1956. "Herald" photographer Stanley Forman received two Pulitzer Prizes consecutively in 1976 and 1977, the first being a dramatic shot of a young child falling in mid-air from her mother's arms on the upper stories of a burning apartment building to the waiting arms of firefighters below, and the latter being of Ted Landsmark, an African American city official, being beaten with an American flag during Boston's school busing crisis. In 2006 the "Herald" won two SABEW awards from The Society of American Business Editors and Writers for its breaking news coverage of the takeover of local company Gillette Co. and for overall excellence.Fact|date=February 2007


*Howie Carr writes extensively on local politics and is a frequent TV commentator.
*Margery Eagan and Peter Gelzinis are longtime metro columnists, as is Joe Fitzgerald, who was formerly a sports columnist.
*Michael Graham is an op-ed columnist for the "Boston Herald".
*Gerry Callahan is a sports columnist and talk show host for WEEI.
*Steve Buckley is a longtime sports columnist and frequent co-host on WEEI.
*Dave Wedge is a political columnist, longtime reporter and frequent TV and radio commentator.
*Jessica Heslam covers the media.
*Joe Sciacca is the paper's deputy managing editor. Sciacca is a former political reporter and columnist who is a regular panelist on "Beat the Press" on the WGBH TV show "Greater Boston", which is hosted by Emily Rooney.
*Kevin Convey is the tabloid's new editor-in-chief, taking over in December 2006 for Ken Chandler, the former editor of the "New York Post", who left the "Herald" to form his own media consulting firm.
*Laurel Sweet is an award-winning reporter who covers courts and crime.
*Lauren Beckham Falcone covers pop culture, style and all things feature-y for the "Boston Herald".
*David Exum covers NASCAR for the "Herald" and works as an online news editor.
*F. Mark Modzelewski is a Herald blogger and occasional columnist who covers the region's technology scene. He's also the Managing Director of Bang Ventures.

Boston Herald in Education Program

The Boston Herald in Education Program provides teachers throughout Massachusetts with classroom newspapers and educational materials at no cost. Teachers use the newspapers in the classroom along with frameworks-compatible teacher guides and in-paper educational series. Each day, the Boston Herald distributes approximately 10,000 newspapers to participating classrooms in over 184 communities throughout Massachusetts. [ [ Boston Herald in Education ] ] October 2007, the In Education program partnered with the Massachusetts Literacy Foundation and Got Books? to support school communities and place fundraising book donation containers at schools across the state in order to help raise money for schools and supplement costs of the newspaper program. []


* Sterling Quinlan, "The Hundred Million Dollar Lunch" (Chicago, J.P. O'Hara, 1974), ISBN 0-87955-310-3.

External links

* [ The "Boston Herald"'s website]
* [ "Herald"'s circulation declines]
* [ Company History]

ee also

* "The Boston Daily Advertiser"
* "The Boston Journal"
* "The Boston Evening Transcript"
* "The Boston Globe"
* "The Boston Post"

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