Saturday, August 17, 2013

As I prepared to celebrate another birthday on August 11, I reflected back over nearly 9 decades of my life. Calvin Coolidge was President of the United States when I was born in the hills of Tennessee.

This story is not about me and my long life; it's about what I now enjoy most each day. It starts at 4 AM when the newspaper carrier delivers the daily newspaper to my door; the Pensacola News Journal.

I have been subscribed to Pensacola News Journal for 26 years and I feel extremely lucky to have the top-of-the-line newspaper published in my adopted hometown. Pensacola News journal is a quality newspaper. Occasionally, the Opinion Editor will post a letter to the editor from me.

These are the newspaper men and women that make Pensacola News Journal the best in Northwest panhandle of Florida:

Kevin T. Doyle, President and Publisher
Richard (Dick) A. Schneider, Executive Editor
Ginny Graybiel, Managing Editor
Tom Ninestine, Opinion Editor
Kim Thomas, Deputy Managing Editor

I clicked on Google and asked for the history of Pensacola News Journal, this is what I learned:

Pensacola News Joural

The Pensacola News Journal is a daily morning newspaper serving Escambia and Santa Rosa counties in Florida. It is Northwest Florida's most widely-read daily.

The News Journal is owned by Gannett Co., a national media holding company that owns newspapers such as USA TODAY and the Arizona Republic, among others.


The heritage of the News Journal can be traced back to 1889, when a group of Pensacola businessmen founded the Pensacola Daily News. The Daily News printed its first issue on 5 March 1889, with an initial circulation of 2,500 copies. Then, in March 1897, a Pensacolian named M. Loftin founded a newsweekly, the Pensacola Journal. The Journal converted to a daily format a year later.

The two dailies competed fiercely, each driving the other to edge of bankruptcy in the struggle to be recognised as Pensacola's top daily newspaper. By 1922, the Journal was in dire financial trouble, and was eventually purchased by New York businessman John Holliday Perry, who at about the same time also acquired papers in Jacksonville and Panama City. Two years later, Perry bought the Daily News and merged the two newspapers' operations. For the next six decades, the Pensacola Journal continued to appear mornings and the Pensacola News evenings, with a combined Sunday edition as the Pensacola News Journal.

John H. Perry developed the News Journal into an extremely popular and successful newspaper. By the early 1950s, the News Journal had developed into one of the most modern and efficient newspaper operations in the Southeast. Under the leadership of Perry's son, John Holliday Perry, Jr., who succeeded his father in 1955, the News Journal continued to expand. Perry Publications, Inc., eventually owned 28 newspapers throughout Florida.

On July 1, 1969, Perry Publications chairman and president John H. Perry, Jr. announced that the company had sold the two papers to Gannett Co., Inc., then based in Rochester, N.Y., for $15.5 million.

Like many U.S. evening newspapers in the post-war period, the News sustained declining circulation and was folded into the Journal in 1985.

The paper gained nationwide notoriety in 1997 and 1998 with a series of investigative reports about the Brownsville Revival at the Brownsville Assembly of God. The paper had initially written glowing reports about the revival, but after former members told the paper that all was not as it appeared, the News Journal began a four-month investigation that revealed the revival had been "well planned and orchestrated" from the very start. It also called many of the claims made by the church's leaders into question, and delved heavily into the church's finances. The series won many awards, but was roundly criticized by evangelicals throughout the country as a "hit piece" against the church and the meetings. The church answered the paper's allegations by publishing a two-page spread entitled, "The Facts of The Brownsville Revival."

The News Journal had a daily circulation of 63,351 and a Sunday circulation of 80,954.