The first Daily Northwestern, published on January 6, 1868, was remarkably published as an experiment. It was named as Vol. 1, No. 1. The Daily Northwestern began as a daily paper after the great fires of Oshkosh, previously being published in 1860, as a weekly newspaper. It was published daily on the first Monday of the new year to promote wellbeing and happiness for everyone as the year began.
When publishing the first daily newspaper as an experiment they wanted to know how many people would pay for daily versus weekly. At first, some businessmen were not for it. On the flip side, some people didn’t want to wait for the weekly paper to see the ads, and sale items. The original daily publisher, Benjamin Franklin Davis didn’t know if he could handle the rapid pace of the daily publication, as for that reason he wasn’t sure if it would stay as a daily newspaper.
The trial and error technique that was used to publish the newspaper still remains today. As an example of this, think about how we have EAA. EAA stands for experimental aircraft association. We still use this trial and error “experimental” technique in our world today. We experiment with different ways to build airplanes to make them safer and better equipped. This is what they used with the newspaper. They wanted to increase the amount of news reaching the community, so they started the daily newspaper. As a result, they realized it was successful, and still is today.
Written By: Lauren Hahn
Historic Location: Oshkosh Northwestern