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And the West is History: Herald-Democrat – ca. 1950

Tracing its roots back to December 1880, The Durango Herald you are reading today has a long and eventful history in Durango. First published out of a tent, The Durango Record was the forerunner to today’s Herald. Trailblazing publisher Caroline Romney started The Record at a time when women in the newspaper business were very uncommon. Another newspaper, headed by J.S. and George Marsh, began publication in June 1881. This paper, The Herald, merged with The Record in 1883. In 1892, another newspaper called The Durango Democrat was started by David Day. The relationship between The Herald and The Democrat was very contentious and bitter through the early years of the 20th century. In 1922, Day’s son, Rod, who ran the Democrat, shot and killed William Wood, the Herald city editor, downtown after a long-simmering feud. He was found not guilty by self-defense. In 1928, as improbable as it sounds, the papers merged and became The Herald-Democrat. After several changes of ownership, Arthur and Morley Ballantine purchased The Herald-Democrat and the Durango News in 1952. The combined publication eventually became The Durango Herald. Shown in this photo is the newspaper office at 1130 Main Ave. before a move to the 1000 block of Main Avenue in 1953. In 1966, the paper moved to its present location at 1275 Main Ave. The Wells Group is now located at the site of this picture, but the faded “HERALD” sign on the south side of the building is still visible. – Ed Horvat for Animas Museum, edhorvat@animasmuseum.org (Catalog Number: 96.08.9 from the La Plata County Historical Society Photo Collections)