Publication History:

Place of Publication:  Wilmington, NC

Frequency: Unknown

Volume and Issue Data:  1869

Size and Format:  Pen and ink journal

Editor/Publisher:  Edward A. Oldham

Title Changes and Continuation: Unknown

General Description and Notes:

“In 1869 at Wilmington, N. C., so far as it has been possible to ascertain, occurred the initial awakening of amateur journalism in the South. At the age of nine, Edward A. Oldham, who was later to become a leading publisher of newspapers, weekly and daily, and a distinguished columnist and writer, produced his first effort in mimic journalism, a pen-and-ink journal, bearing the title of the Little Monitor, suggested by his having been selected as monitor in a private school, where he was among the youngest pupils. This little make-believe newspaper was issued often enough to intensify the young editor’s ambition to own a real printing press and to print a little paper. He had seen Benjamin S. Wood’s advertisement of the Novelty Press in his monthly copy of the St. Nicholas. In time he managed to earn money enough for the purchase of a press and type equipment, and in 1870 he published the Star of the South, four pages, each page 5 x 7 inches, printing one page at a time. This tiny journal set the pace for Southern boys, North Carolina boys particularly, and in that State there quickly followed the Boys’ Courier from New Born, with James M. Howard, Charles R. Thomas and Owen Guiort, as editors. The last named became a Superior Court judge, and Thomas rose to political prominence and became a Member of Congress from North Carolina for several terms, in the Nineties and later.” (The Early Pioneers of Amateur Journalism (Before 1876))

“WHAT HAS BEEN CHARACTERIZED as “The Mimic Press” had an early start in North Carolina. In 1869, at the age of nine, Edward A. Oldham, of Wilmington, is credited with producing the first “amateur newspaper” — the Little Monitor, a pen and ink folio, followed in 1873 by the Star of the South, miniature and type-set.” (Oldham, History of Early Amateur Journalism in North Carolina)

Information Sources:

Bibliography: None

Links: Edward A. Oldham, History of Early Amateur Journalism in North Carolina Early Pioneers of Amateur Journalism (Before 1876)

Locations:  Unknown