Seattle's daily newspapers: A timeline
A timeline of events in Seattle newspaper history.
The P-I is the oldest morning newspaper in the state of Washington.
The early years
1867: The newspaper Weekly Intelligencer, the origin of the Post-Intelligencer, is founded in Seattle.
1881: The Intelligencer combines with the Post to become the Post-Intelligencer.
1896: The Seattle Daily Times' new owner, "Colonel" Alden Blethen, publishes his first edition to challenge the older, more conservative P-I.
The middle years
1921: William Randolph Hearst takes over the Seattle Post- Intelligencer, revealed when Hearst's first editorial appears.
1930: The Ridder brothers of New York and St. Paul, Minn., buy a minority interest in The Times.
1936: A Newspaper Guild strike suspends publication of the P-I for nearly four months.
1946: The Blethen family fends off a hostile takeover attempt by the Ridder family.
1953: A Newspaper Guild strike suspends publication of The Times for three months.
The later years
1983: The Hearst Corp. and The Seattle Times Co. form a joint-operating agreement (JOA) in which the larger Times handles advertising, printing, promotion and distribution for both newspapers, but each continues to run separate, competing newsrooms. The P-I publishes mornings Monday-Saturday; The Times publishes Monday-Friday afternoons, Saturday-Sunday mornings.
1986: The P-I, no longer needing printing presses, moves into a new building on Elliott Avenue West, installing its trademark globe there.
2000: After renegotiating the JOA, The Times switches to morning publication, going head-to-head with the P-I. Later in the year, Newspaper Guild workers at the P-I, alongside those at The Times, go on strike. The P-I strike ends first, after 38 days, with the approval of a new contract.
2003: The Seattle Times attempts to end the JOA, but The Hearst Corp. sues The Times to stop the action. A long legal battle follows, and Hearst threatens to sell the P-I if the proceedings don't speed up. Cartoonist David Horsey wins a second Pulitzer Prize.
2006: McClatchy buys Knight Ridder, inheriting its Times stake.
2007: Hearst and The Times Co. settle new terms of the JOA.
Jan. 9, 2009: News reports say Hearst puts P-I up for sale, preparing to close it.
Compiled from Seattle Times archives and Historylink.org by news researcher Gene Balk and desk editor Laura Gordon.
Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company
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