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Arkansas Gazette Business Files, 1819-1983

Arkansas Gazette Business Files, 1819-1983

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Arkansas Gazette Business Files, 1819-1983 UALR.MS.0187

UALR Center for Arkansas History and Culture
401 President Clinton Avenue
Little Rock, AR, 72201

Profile Description

Creation: This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2015-07-30T16:07-0500

Repository: UALR Center for Arkansas History and Culture
Title: Arkansas Gazette Business Files, 1819-1983
Dates: Bulk, 1889-1983
Dates: 1819-1983
Quantity: 6.0 linear feet; 10 document boxes, one flat box
Identification: UALR.MS.0187

Scope and Content

This collection contains correspondence, financial papers, legal documents, staff files, and photographs documenting operations at the Arkansas Gazette, including its founding by William Woodruff in the nineteenth century and news and events at the paper during the mid-20th century. Significant correspondents include Fred Allsopp, J. N. Heiskell, Harry Ashmore, and Hugh B. Patterson, Jr., as well as articles and other items concerning editors and writers at the newspaper.

Also included are letters and other papers from prominent newspaper figures outside Arkansas, including Richmond editor Virginius Dabney of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and H. L. Mencken of the Baltimore Sun as well politicians, artists, and writers. The files document many important events of the twentieth century, and of particular note are items concerning the paper's role in the Central High School integration crisis of 1957-58.

This collection is part of the J. N. Heiskell Historical Collections, courtesy of the Arkansas Gazette Foundation.

Historical Note

The Arkansas Gazette was founded by William E. Woodruff on 1819 November 20 at the Arkansas Post, a settlement near the convergence of the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers. Two years later, the Gazette printing press and office was also moved. The Gazette has been published in Little Rock since 1821.

Over the next few decades, the newspaper was bought, sold, and combined with other newspapers several times. The Gazette Publishing Company was incorporated under the laws of the state of Arkansas on 1889 June 4. The Gazette building at Third and Louisiana Streets was built in 1908 by Peter Hotze and was rented to the Gazette Publishing Company. In January of 1920, the company purchased the Moore and Turner building at Second and Louisiana Streets as a site for the company’s plant and office. In 1927, the company purchased the England Bank building on Second Street in order to expand. In 1936, the company purchased the Gazette building from the Estate of Peter Hotze at a public sale under a mortgage foreclosure. By these purchases the company acquired the one-half block between Second and Third Streets, with entrances on Markham and Louisiana.

J. N. Heiskell, a native of Tennessee, ran daily operations at the Gazette from 1902 until his death in 1972. Another prominent figure at the paper was Heiskell's son-in-law, Hugh B. Patterson, Jr., who was business manager at the Gazette for decades. In 1957, the Gazette made a controversial stand against Governor Orval Faubus and the segregationists, who opposed the integration of Central High School in Little Rock. Although the paper did not advocate segregation per se, it defended "law and order," namely, the enforcement of the United States Supreme Court's decision in Brownvs. Board of Education, which ruled that Jim Crow laws were unconstitutional. The Gazette, especially its editor Harry Ashmore, suffered intense public criticism and opposition, which included a boycott, for its stand on desegregation. However, in 1958, the Gazette received two Pulitzer Prizes for its writing on the Little Rock crisis.

In 1986 Gannett News Service purchased the Arkansas Gazette. In 1991, the Gazette was again bought, this time by its cross-town rival, the Arkansas Democrat. The two papers merged to become the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

Allsopp, Fred W. (Fred William), 1867-1946
Arkansas gazette (Little Rock, Ark. : 1889).
Arkansas Gazette Foundation. (donor)
Arkansas--Race relations--History
Ashmore, Harry S., 1916-1998
Central High School (Little Rock, Ark.)
Heiskell, John Netherland, 1872-1972, collector
Newspapers--United States--History--20th century
Patterson, Hugh B. (Hugh Baskin), 1915-2006
Woodruff, William Edward, 1795-1885


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is available for viewing at the Arkansas Studies Institute.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17-U.S. Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. The person using this material is liable for any infringement.

Copyright for correspondence in the collections belongs to those correspondents or their beneficiaries. Persons wanting to re-use those materials are advised to obtain permission from copyright holders.

Administrative Information

Citation Notes

Bibliographic citation:

Arkansas Gazette Business Files, 1819-1983 [bulk 1889-1983], UALR.MS.0187. UALR Center for Arkansas History and Culture, Arkansas Studies Institute, Little Rock.

Footnote or Endnote info:

Description of item, folder number, Arkansas Gazette Business Files, 1819-1983 [bulk 1889-1983], UALR.MS.0187.

Processed by:

Kimberly Wessels, Graduate Assistant, M.A. in Public History, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Spring 2012.

Related Material

Harry S. Ashmore Papers, 1947-1961

Hugh B. Patterson, Jr., Papers, UALR.MS.0223

J. N. Heiskell Personal Papers, UALR.MS.0150

Little Rock School Crisis Collection, 1957-1965, UALR.MS.0170

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