The World

The world (Minneapolis, Minn.; St. Paul, Minn.; Duluth, Minn.) 1895-1897  Browse the title

The World began publication in 1895 with offices in Minneapolis and St. Paul, proclaiming in its masthead, "This is the only newspaper published at the head of the lakes, in the interest of the colored people." The four-page, six-column newspaper was published weekly and featured a digest of national, regional and local news with a particular emphasis on news events impacting the African American community. By 1896, the paper had expanded its operations to the city of Duluth. 

Like many African American newspapers of the day, the World was decidedly Republican in its politics. From May through June of 1896, the paper published numerous editorial letters speaking out against the "Democratic southern states" and their part in implementing the various "Jim Crow" laws at the heart of the landmark Plessy v. Ferguson case which, at the time, was being argued before the United States Supreme Court.

The World also enjoyed an active rivalry with another Twin Cities African American newspaper, the Appeal. At the heart of the rivalry was the Appeal's claim to being the "only legitimate Afro-American newspaper in the Twin Cities." In its May 23, 1896 issue, the editors of the World challenged the Appeal to defend their claim, adding that "[w]hile the word legitimate is a good word, yet in this case was used was used out of place. Please get a new word or change the argument."

During its relatively brief existence, the World went through numerous management changes. Through the paper's first year, Perry O. Gray was its sole editor and publisher. By 1896, Colonel Samuel E. Hardy, formerly with the Western Appeal, had joined as the paper's business manager and D.H. Saunders served as editor and advertising agent for Duluth and Superior. In 1897, A.G. Plummer, formerly with the Minneapolis Observer, became the paper's editor, Richard Farr became associate editor, and William Bruce, Charles Miller, Claude Jackson and J.S. Harris took roles as business managers. By November of that same year, however, the World ceased publication.

See more: Minnesota African American Newspapers