Scanned By Howard Osburn

Presented by The Wayne County Genealogical & Historical Society


Our Webmaster, Howard Osburn, has spent a considerable amount of time over the past few years scanning the Wayne County News. These scans are preserved in picture format, as well as text format. He has now completed fifty years of scans.

The Wayne News Office has in storage newspaper back to late 1919.

Presented in these files are primarily documents of historical and personal interest. While all of the obituaries were scanned, only a fraction of them, which contain historical elements, will be presented here.

You will notice throughout these files instances of poor and improper spelling. For the most part, the files are presented as they appeared. It is also important to know that the scans were processed with an Optical Character Recognition program, which turns the scan into text format, without the drudgery of typing. Errors do enter through the use of these programs, but much time has been spent in proof-reading the files. However, a few mistakes may exist.

We hope you enjoy these documents, as they will present a lot of interesting information which would require an enormous amount of personal time to accumulate.

It is our wish that all would refrain from copying our hard labor for the purpose of displaying it on any other web-site. Those who enjoy posting to web-sites should do their own research and not copy others.

At the bottom of this page is an article discussing the history of The Wayne County News.

Additional files will be presented as time permits.

If you enjoy these articles, please consider becoming a member of our society. We publish a 36 page quarterly newsletter which contains much more of this type of stories. On the menu page you will find a link to our membership application.


1882 through 1919























Wayne County News celebrates its fifty-ninth birthday this month.

Almost three-score years ago in July the newspaper was founded in Fort Gay. At that time it was known as the Wayne Advocate.

For fifty-nine years, through good times and bad times, through winters and summers, through wars and through times of peace the newspaper has been a weekly visitor in Wayne county homes. Some of the good friends who had their names placed on the subscription list before the first issue was printed are still living and still reading Wayne County News every week.

Parade Of Progress

Going back through the musty time-yellowed files of the paper is like summoning up the parade of progress and seeing this section of the country emerge from the pioneer era into the modern days we are experiencing.

When Wayne County News was founded this county was still in the frontier stage. Roads were rough trails where the axes of the pioneers had not long since felled the trees and made a place over which their wagons could pass. Settlements in this section were few and small. No large cities had been built.

The paper has seen the development of the county. It has seen fine concrete highways replace the old rugged trails, it has seen modern homes take the place of the log cabins, fine school buildings replace the one-room buildings where many Wayne countians yet alive learned "readin', ritin' and rithmatic".

Let's recall a few of the important things that have taken place in the world since the paper was started.

First Telephone

In 1878 the first telephone exchange was erected at New Haven, Connecticut, with eight subscribers. The telephone had been invented two years previously by Alexander Graham Bell. It was many, many years afterwards before the first telephone was installed in Wayne county. In it's early day the editor of Wayne County News transacted no business and gathered no news by telephone.

In 1880 the manufacture of artificial ice was conducted by 25 establishments. Artificial ice was unheard of in Wayne county until years afterwards. In the early days the only ice available during the summer was such ice as had been cut from the rivers or ponds during the dead of winter and stored in ice houses. In 1882, when Wayne County News was 8 years old, Robert Koch a German physician and bacterioligist discovered the tuberculosis germ. Since then the death rate from the disease has fallen fifty percent or more.

In the year 1885 the editor heard news that sounded strange and perhaps a little far-fetched. As he toiled away in his little shop where the type was set by hand he heard of the invention of the linotype machine by Ottmar Merganthaler, a German living in Baltimore.

Wayne County News was 15 years old and pretty well established at the time of the Johnstown Flood in 1889, when 2205 lives were lost.

Up through the Gay Nineties the paper came, growing and serving more readers as the years went by. It was sixteen years old in 1890 when the People's Party held its first meeting in Topeka. The party was organized a year later in Cincinnati and composed of farmer and labor elements which espoused free silver and government ownership of railroads. It also stood for income tax, popular election of senators, initiative and referendum and postal savings banks, all of which were later adopted. With the democrats it supported Bryan in 1896.

First Auto

Wayne County News was eighteen years old when Charles E. Duryea built the first American automobile that ran in 1892. He was followed a year later by Henry Ford. It was many more years before the first gasoline chariot ever came chugging over the Wayne county hills. By 1927 there were more than 22,000,000 machines in the United States, and nearly 28,000,000 in the world.

In 1898 when the paper was 24 years of age the battleship Maine was sunk in Havana Harbor. Though no official finding was made of the cause the event inflamed popular passion, and a war with Spain for the liberation of Cuba followed, resulting in the conquest of the Philippines and the cession of Porto Rico. The same year Hawaii was annexed. Thus the United States was launched on what has been called a career of overseas imperialism involving new problems of international politics, defense, commerce and finance.

In 1900 when the paper was 26 years old the Boxer Rebellion broke out in China. In the same year the caterpillar tractor was invented.

The paper was "getting along in years." When President William McKinley was assassinated in 1901 and Theodore Roosevelt was elevated to the presidency.

In 1903 a strange story came back into the Wayne hills about a man who had made a machine that would fly through the air. The man was Orville Wright and the first flight was made at Kitty Hawk, N. C., on Deccrohoc 17 of that year.

Wilbur Wright made a flight the same day.

And so the years rolled on, with Wayne County News serving its readers. The paper during the years following 1903 saw such or heard of such unusual things as the San Francisco earthquake on April 15, 1906; the killing of Stanford White by Harry K. Thaw in the same year; the discovery of the North Pole by Robert E. Peary, in 1909; discovery of the South Pole by Ronald Amundsen, Norwegian explorer in 1911, the sinking of the Titanic, largest vessel in the world on her maiden voyage in 1912, with 1,503 persons

being drowned; the progressive Republican revolt against President Taft's administration which resulted in the splitting of the republican party in 1912, Woodrow Wilson getting the democratic nomination for the presidency and being elected the same year; the opening of the Panama Canal in 1914; the outbreak of the World War following the assassination of Archduke Frances Ferdinand, heir apparent to the Austrian throne; Our nation's entry into the World War in 1917: the boom days during and after the war, the stock market crash of 1929 and the wild rout of the republican party in 1932 when Franklin D. Roosevelt, democratic candidate was elected president, the masterful manner in which Roosevelt set about to bring order out of chaos---and the big parade goes on.