Front page - 8/1820

On June 18, 2019, LNP will celebrate its 225th anniversary. The earliest newspaper to which today’s LNP traces its roots was the Lancaster Journal, first published on June 18, 1794, by William Hamilton and Henry Willcocks from a news office located in a tavern building at the King Street site of the current LNP building.

To celebrate 225 years of Lancaster newspapers, we present this series of 52 front pages from the history of the newspapers which would eventually become LNP. 

Washington’s belated farewell

Such was the state of commercial printing for the lower and middle classes that in this 1820 edition of the newspaper, there is an ad for a reprint of George Washington’s farewell address, which was given in 1796. There is much grandstanding in what amounts to an ad for a short booklet, promising “the condensed results of long experience, matured reflection and strong anxiety for the permanent prosperity of his country.” Washington died in 1799, which only gave more weight to the farewell address. For a time, it was as popular as the Declaration of Independence. For fans of recent pop culture, the farewell address was brought back into the public consciousness by way of the musical “Hamilton,” whose song “One Last Time” features lines from the document.

Milk and cream

This edition of the Lancaster Journal also proclaims the arrival of a proper “Milk Establishment,” offering delivery by cart from one Patton Ross. What we know as the modern refrigerator wouldn’t be perfected for nearly another century, so Ross advises readers to “use one quart during the day, and let another quart stand in a cool place until the next morning.” Though the cart was wheeled around to every part of the city, Ross advises people buy no less than two quarts so that he would have time to make his complete rounds in time for every citizen’s breakfast.

Landis Museum

The Landis Valley Museum has been a staple of history-minded Lancastrians for decades, but what about the unrelated Lancaster Museum, owned by John Landis? Located on the east side of Queen Street, the museum featured different animal carcasses. His announcement on the Aug. 4, 1820, front page lists some of the more recent additions, such as the jaw bone of a whale and “a singular lamb” with eight legs and two tails. Landis seemed to straddle the line between offering genuine curios and sideshow attractions, as he also featured a miniature mansion and garden, titled “A Fancy Piece.”

Sources: LNP archives;