The Waumadee Herald

The Waumadee herald (Read's Landing, Minn.) 1857 Browse the title

In the early spring of 1857 the McMaster family settled in Read’s Landing, Minnesota. Thomas A. McMaster made arrangements along with his two brothers who were printers—William J. and Joseph McMaster—to publish a newspaper there. At that time it was proposed that the village of Read’s Landing be called Waumadee. So the McMaster brothers named the newspaper the Waumadee Herald. The first issue bore the date May 9, 1857, but it is believed that the actual printing of the paper was on Monday, May 11. It was a seven-column, four-page paper.

Later in the afternoon of May 11, Joseph and Thomas McMaster drowned when their sailboat capsized on the Mississippi River. The youngest brother William didn’t have sufficient experience to continue the newspaper on his own and the Waumadee Herald ceased publication. A few months later the publishing equipment was bought by Norman E. Stevens who began publishing the Wabashaw Weekly County Herald in August 1857.


Curtiss-Wedge, Franklyn, comp. History of Wabasha County Minnesota. Winona, MN: H.C. Cooper, Jr. & Co., 1920.

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Johnston, Daniel S.B. "Minnesota Journalism in the Territorial Period." Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society, Vol. 10, pt. 1. St. Paul, MN: MHS, 1905.

"Historical Letter Early Day Relic." Wabasha County Herald, August 4, 1921, pg. 5.

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