front page - 8/1910

Lancaster Intelligencer, Aug. 10, 1910

On June 18, 2019, LNP celebrated 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. 

Worth 1,000 words

These days, it’s taken for granted that news organizations use photography to complement and sometimes supplement the text of a story. The old cliché of a picture being worth a thousand words is nowhere as relevant as it is on the page of a newspaper, where space is a valuable commodity.

The first photos to appear in newsprint were not actually photos at all. Rather, they were prints based on engravings. This method first popped up in the world of journalism in 1853, when Romanian painter Carol Szathmari documented the Crimean War. In the next decade, stateside artists would use the same process to cover the Civil War. Decades later, photojournalism would explode in popularity with the advent of the 35mm camera in 1925. From there, innovations came quickly, – the first commercial flash bulb was created in 1927, Kodachrome film hit the market in 1935 and a patent for electric photography was granted to Chester Carlson in 1942.

On the front page of the Aug. 10, 1910, edition of the Lancaster Intelligencer is one of the first photographs to appear on a Lancaster front page. While it is not a photo of some Lancaster landmark or even something Lancaster-related, it is memorable for history’s sake. William J. Gaynor, then mayor of New New York City, is pictured with his two young daughters in a photo credited to the American Press Association. The day before this issue went to press, Gaynor had begun a journey from Hoboken, New Jersey, to Europe when disgruntled dockworker James J. Gallagher shot Gaynor through the neck at point-blank range. Shockingly, Gaynor would not only survive the attack, but continue to live for another three years before dying of an apparent heart attack aboard the RMS Baltic on Sept. 10, 1913. Gaynor continues to hold the dubious distinction of being the only mayor of New York City to actually be struck with a bullet during an assassination attempt.

This staid image of Mayor Gaynor would give Lancastrians a good idea of what the man looked like prior to the shooting, but an even more famous photograph was taken the exact second of the shooting. News of the World photographer Bill Warnecke happened to be taking a shot of the mayor at the same moment the assassin took his, creating a haunting, blood-filled image not suitable for most newspapers at the time.

Today, photography is just one important aspect of the final form a story can take, alongside video, animation and various other forms of visual journalism.