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The Detroit News
The Detroit News front page.jpg
The July 27, 2005 front page
of The Detroit News
Type Monday-Saturday newspaper
Format Broadsheet
Owner MediaNews Group
(Detroit Media Partnership)
Publisher Jonathan Wolman
Editor Donald Nauss
Founded 1873
Headquarters 615 West Lafayette
Detroit, Michigan 48226
 United States
Circulation 188,171[1]
ISSN 1055-2715
Official website

The Detroit News is one of the two major newspapers in the U.S. city of Detroit, Michigan. The paper began in 1873 when it rented space in the rival Free Press's building. The News absorbed the Detroit Tribune on Februbary 1, 1919, the Detroit Journal on July 21, 1922, and on November 7, 1960, it bought out and closed the Detroit Times. The square in downtown Detroit where the Times building once stood is still called "Times Square." The Evening News Association, owner of the News, merged with Gannett in 1985.

The News claims to have been the first newspaper in the world to operate a radio station, station 8MK, which went on the air August 20, 1920. 8MK is now WWJ. In 1947, it birthed Michigan's first television station, WWJ-TV, now WDIV-TV.

Detroit News logo

In 1989, the paper entered into a 100-year joint operating agreement with the rival Free Press, combining business operations while keeping separate editorial staffs. The combined company is called the Detroit Newspaper Partnership. The Free Press moved into the News building in 1998 and until May 7, 2006 the two published a single joint weekend edition. Today the News, which has won three Pulitzer Prizes, is published Monday-Saturday, and has an editorial page in the Sunday Free Press.


The Detroit News was founded by James E. Scripps who, in turn, was the older half-brother and one-time partner of Edward W. Scripps. The paper's eventual success, however, is largely credited to Scripps' son-in-law, George Gough Booth, who came aboard at the request of his wife's father. Booth went on to construct Michigan's largest newspaper empire, founding the independent Booth Newspapers chain (now owned by S.I. Newhouse's Advance Publications) with his two brothers.

The Detroit News building was erected in 1917. It was designed by architect Albert Kahn, who included a faux-stone concrete building with large street level arches to admit light. The arches along the east and south side of the building were bricked in for protection after the 12th Street Riot in 1967. The bricked-in arches on the east and south ends of the building were reopened during renovations required when the Free Press moved in 20 years later.

On July 13, 1995, Newspaper Guild represented employees of the Detroit Free Press and News and the pressmen, printers and Teamsters working for the "Detroit Newspapers" distribution arm went on strike. About half of the staffers crossed the picket line before the unions ended their strike in February 1997. The strike was resolved in court three years later, with the journalists' union losing its unfair labor practices case on appeal. Still, the weakened unions remain active at the paper, representing a majority of the employees under their jurisdiction.

On August 3, 2005, Gannett announced that it was selling the News to MediaNews Group and purchasing the Free Press from the Knight Ridder company. Gannett became the managing partner in the papers' joint operating agreement. On May 7, 2006, the combined Sunday Detroit News and Free Press were replaced by a standalone Sunday Free Press. On December 16, 2008, Detroit Media Partnership announced a plan to limit weekday home delivery for both dailies to Thursday and Friday only. On other weekdays the paper sold at newsstands would be smaller, about 32 pages, and redesigned. This arrangement went into effect beginning on March 30, 2009.[2]

The News has significantly lower print circulation than the Free Press (more than 100,000 less, according the Knight Ridder 2004 Annual Report) though the News website is the 10th most read newspaper website in the United States.

Editorially, the News is generally considered conservative, although it claims to follow a more libertarian philosophy first printed in 1958 that it "is bound to no political party". In matters economic, it is and will continue to be conservative. On issues of civil rights and individual liberties, it is consistently liberal." It has never endorsed a Democrat for president, and has only failed to endorse a Republican presidential candidate three times--twice during the Franklin D. Roosevelt era and once again in 2004, when it refused to endorse George W. Bush for reelection.[3]


  1. ^ "2008 Top 100 Daily Newspapers in the U.S. by Circulation" (PDF). BurrellesLuce. 2008-03-31. Retrieved 2009-03-23.  
  2. ^ Pérez-Peña, Richard & Chapman, Mary. "Detroit's Daily Papers Are Now Not So Daily," The New York Times, Tuesday, March 31, 2009.
  3. ^

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