WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Manassas Daily 'News & Messenger' Shuts Down

Play associated audio
The News & Messenger newspaper will publish its last issue in December.  
Michael Pope
The News & Messenger newspaper will publish its last issue in December.  

Beth Feeney plunks two quarters into the newspaper box, and opens the door. She takes the last copy, and reads the headline: "News and Messenger to close."

"It's so sad," she says. "We've been subscribers for years and years and years. And it's just something I've looked forward to."

The News and Messenger dates back to 1869, a long and proud history in Prince William County. It's reported on everything from the Board of Supervisors to high school sports. But like paper after paper across America, it couldn't remain profitable in a digital world. So it will put out its last issue in December.

"The media world is definitely changing, and we have to change with the times, says Bob Chase, manager of Prospero's Books in Old Town Manassas. "Many times, people wish to go beyond the sound bites, and they want to read more of a story that's only captured in a newspaper."

Up and down the streets of Old Town, people here are heartbroken about the death of their hometown newspaper, which has carried generations of wedding announcements and obituaries. City Square Café owner Robert Barolin says the end of his hometown newspaper represents the end of an era.

"It's going the way that the books are going now," he says. "We are going to e-books, and people don't turn paper anymore. For people my age, yea it will be missed. For a new generation, probably not. But the news will always be around."

One bright spot for advertising at the News and Messenger is the last few issues will be highly circulated and collected, which means they might sell a bit more advertising as a swan song.


From Trembling Teacher To Seasoned Mentor: How Tim Gunn Made It Work

Gunn, the mentor to young designers on Project Runway, has been a teacher and educator for decades. But he spent his childhood "absolutely hating, hating, hating, hating school," he says.

How Do We Get To Love At 'First Bite'?

It's the season of food, and British food writer Bee Wilson has a book on how our food tastes are formed. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with her about her new book, "First Bite: How We Learn to Eat."

Osceola At The 50-Yard Line

The Seminole Tribe of Florida works with Florida State University to ensure it that its football team accurately presents Seminole traditions and imagery.

Reviving Payoff For Prediction – Of Terrorism Risk

Could an electronic market where people bet on the likelihood of attacks deter terrorism? NPR's Scott Simon speaks with Stephen Carter about the potential for a terror prediction market.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.