Front page - 1841

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. 

Poetry and fiction

You’d be forgiven for looking at the cover of this March, 1841, edition of the Lancaster Intelligencer & Journal and thinking that it was a literary journal. On the full right side of the paper, a large chunk of Victor Hugo’s 1829 short novel, “The Last Day of a Condemned Man,” is reprinted and translated from French. Initially published in 1829, the story is a fictionalized version of Hugo’s thoughts on the death penalty. The story is told from the perspective of a man imprisoned for unknown reasons in 19th-century France, cursing his lot in life and bemoaning the idea of the death penalty. The section featured in the newspaper begins with a visit from the man’s 3-year-old daughter who no longer recognizes him, and ends with him being wheeled out to face the guillotine. Elsewhere on the front page, multiple original poems showcased are from Lancastrians J. E. Dow, Jane H. Williams and C.B.W. Esling.

Inspector wanted

In the lower left corner of the page, a call is placed for a new brigade inspector to replace the retiring Col. Abraham Greenawalt. As the title suggests, the brigade inspector was in charge of inspecting troops and arms before they were deemed ready for combat. Greenawalt’s scope was clearly large, as shown by the job requirements listing inspections for the 35th, 65th and 76th regiments located in Leacock Township, Drumore Township and Elizabethtown, respectively. While this Greenawalt’s service was just coming to an end, another’s wouldn’t for a few more decades – Greenawalt’s son, also named Abraham, would receive a Medal of Honor during the Civil War for capturing a Confederate headquarters flag at the Second Battle of Franklin, Tennessee, in 1864.