Our first newspaper, published 224 years ago, printed only paid classified advertising on its front page. There was no news on the cover, and a subscription cost 15 shillings a year.
Over the centuries, our company has adapted to the changing ways our readers get their news. But its mission remains the same: providing the most current information about the people and businesses of Lancaster County and the local, regional and national events that shape their lives.
Quality local journalism plays an essential role in the growth and vitality of communities. The reporting we do matters and is relevant to our daily lives in ways that differ from reporting being done by national publications.
Our journalists report on how your tax dollars are spent, what's happening at your children's schools, whether the local business climate is healthy, how truthful candidates for local and state elected office are being, and whether crime is rising or falling in your neighborhood.
On these issues and myriad others, LNP and LancasterOnline journalists are committed to reporting with more depth, context, insight and analysis than anyone else.
One example of this commitment: LNP employs nearly 200 journalists, including correspondents, to cover our community. We have one of the largest newsrooms in the mid-Atlantic region outside of New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.
LNP also employs nearly 300 professionals outside the newsroom. They are dedicated to helping local businesses thrive, answering customer questions, producing news and feature videos, delivering the print edition to your doorstep every morning, and making sure LancasterOnline is fresh and easy to read 24 hours a day.
Running a news operation that covers 944 square miles of Lancaster County - and the 542,903 people who call its 60 municipalities and 16 school districts home - is a costly endeavor.
Because of the value that a strong local newspaper adds to its community, it's easy to mistake our work for a nonprofit community service. It is not.
LNP must adopt a business model that allows its journalists, client solutions team, customer service staff and news carriers to continue their roles in producing LNP and LancasterOnline and community-focused journalism in print and digital formats each day.
Beginning Monday, July 23, we will require LancasterOnline readers who do not subscribe to home delivery of LNP to purchase a digital subscription.
Home-delivery print subscribers will have unlimited access to all of our digital news, information, coupons, video, podcasts, electronic newspaper and other offerings as an added value. (Home-delivery print subscribers will need to activate their digital accounts at lancasteronline.com/activate or by calling our customer service team at (717) 291-8611.)
If you are not a home-delivery print subscriber, there's never been a better time to go for it.
You have several options.
1. You can subscribe to LNP print home-delivery and have our great journalism and advertising offers delivered to your home and, as a result, receive unlimited access to all of our digital offerings. Beginning Monday, July 23, to subscribe simply visit lancasteronline.com/subscribe or call (717) 291-8611.
2. You can purchase a digital subscription to LancasterOnline. This gives you unlimited access to all of our digital offerings. For a limited time, pay just 99 cents to subscribe. Beginning Monday, July 23, visit lancasteronline.com/subscribe or call (717) 291-8611 to start your digital subscription.
In 1794, the publisher of this paper certainly did not imagine we would be delivering great journalism to mobile devices or know what a video was.
Today, it's impossible for us to predict what changes may come, or how our journalists will be covering news and events in the next 224 years. By implementing this change, our goal is to fortify our company's place in the future of Lancaster County and to continue serving its citizens.
We work hard to report the facts and cover stories that matter to the people and communities we serve. We wouldn't be able to do what we do without your support. We are grateful for your continued loyalty and we look forward to serving you in the future.
Here's to the next 224 years.
Caroline Muraro is the president of LNP Media Group, which publishes LNP and LancasterOnline.