ERIC Number: ED177591
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Aug
The Nation's First Wire Service: Evidence Supporting a Footnote.
Schwarzlose, Richard A.
The Associated Press's claim that it is the oldest wire service in the United States (tracing its origin to formation of the New York City Associated Press in 1948) has been regularly sustained in journalism's history literature. This claim has been challenged by Alfred McClung Lee in his book "The Daily Newspaper in America," in which he contends that an obscure group of editors in upstate New York formed the pioneer wire service in the nation. This claim is supported by a collection of letters and documents at the Oneida Historical Society in Utica, New York, which places the founding of the New York State Associated Press in February and March of 1846--two months prior to the appearance of the earliest shared telegraphic dispatch in New York City newspapers and 26 months before the Associated Press's self-proclaimed birth. The documents reveal a developing wire service that altered its structure to accommodate the growing telegraphic network in upstate New York. When the line was completed only between Albany and Utica, the Utica editor express-mailed proofs of his telegraphic news columns to participating newspapers west of him. Later, when the line was complete from Albany to Buffalo, a meeting of editors in the region established a formal organization that bargained with the telegraph company for rates and handling of news dispatches and employed correspondents in Albany and New York City. (Appendixes contain copies of two dispatches from the early wire service.) (Author/FL)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Education in Journalism (62nd, Houston, TX, August 5-8, 1979)