Daily Oklahoma State Capital

History

This paper was established in April 1889 by Frank H. Greer out of Winfield, Kansas. Greer relocated to Guthrie, where he continued publishing the paper with Republican affiliations. The paper ran until 1911, billed as the first newspaper printed in Oklahoma Territory.

Before leaving Kansas for Oklahoma, Greer pre-printed several issues of his newspaper to distribute once he arrived in the Oklahoma Territory. He staked a claim in what became the city of Guthrie. In the beginning, the State Capital was housed in a tent and was printed every morning except for Mondays. The newspaper was strongly affiliated with the Republican Party until its closure in 1911. Greer founded the paper in part to expound on the virtues of Guthrie in hopes of making the city the site of the territorial government as well as criticizing illegal land claims. The paper was advertised as the first newspaper printed in the Oklahoma Territory.

In the early 1900s, the newspaper faced serious competition not only from another Guthrie based newspaper the Guthrie Daily Leader but also from the Oklahoma City-based Oklahoman. As Oklahoma City's popularity grew and the idea of the city as the capital gained favor, the State Capital lost much of its following. The State Capital and the Oklahoman entered into a fierce competition that ended when the capital was moved to Oklahoma City. At this point, the city newspaper became the prominent reading material. In 1911, Greer sold the paper to the Democratic Daily Leader.

Over the twelve years that the State Capital was in production, there was a succession of prominent editors including, Omer K. Benedict, Fred L. Wenner, Frank Terry, Corbin Marquand Sachet, and George McQuaid. Greer was the proprietor of the paper for the entire time it was in production. Between 1899 and 1911, the newspaper enjoyed robust circulation numbers. In 1892, the circulation was advertised as 2,250. By 1906 the newspaper boasted numbers over 20,000.

In 1889, the paper measured at 20 by 24 inches and featured four pages, and by 1891 had changed to 18 by 24 inches and a year subscription cost $6.00. Between 1892 and 1907, the paper experienced several changes in size and page numbers. At the turn of the century, the State Capital had doubled in size to eight pages and was slightly smaller, measuring at 17 by 22 inches. The subscription cost had been reduced by one dollar. Towards the end, the paper had between eight and twenty-four pages and continued to measure at 17 by 22 inches.



At a Glance