Change of Ownership, 1949 - Culver Citizen
Today's issue of the Citizen is an important one not only to the community as a whole but to M. R. Robinson, veteran editor, who
retires after twenty-two years of service, and more paticularly to those of us who are taking up the reins of management and
operation of this institution.
As the new owner I realize fully the extent of the responsibility and the opportunity that has been placed at my disposal. In the
past, Culver 's newspaper has been developed by men of much experience in the world of affairs. While the newspaper and printing
field are new to me personally, I have long had a deep interest in this field of work. I have the deepest confidence in the
personnel who will cooperatively carry on this work.
Along with the responsility which now rests on our shoudders [shoulders] there is an oppertunity to serve this fime community of
which it has been my privilege to be a member for several years. It is a real pleasure to enter the buisness field and to become
more closely associated with the community. I want to assure you that we will stive to serve you in every way possible.
Charles Maull Fifth Owner in 55 year Development of Citizen; Open House Tonight.
Today's issue of the Culver 's weekly paper, The Citizen, marks another milestone in ite half-century developement. The official
transfer of owneship signified by this issue is the fifth since the establishedment of the paper, M. R. Robinson, owner and
publisher, has disposed of his interests in the paper and it is now under the management of Charles Maull, Jr., owner and publisher,
and Robert Rust, editor and manager.
The present-day Culver Citizen had its origin on July 18, 1894 when the first issue of the Marmont Herald was published. It was
founded by George Nearpass who served as editor and published. In 1896 wne the town's name was changed, he altered the paper's
name to the Culver City Herald and later dropped "City" when the town did.
Editor Nearpass sold the paper on April 27, 1903, to J. H. Koontz, who promptly changed the name of the paper to the ine it now
bears, The Culver Citizen.
The paper again had a new owner on April 1, 1906, when Arthur R. Holt bought the interest of Mr. Koontz. Mr. Holt remained the editor
through the years that saw the commuunity of Culver grow from a village to a town and under his leadership the paper progressed
accordingly. He had a distinct flare for writing which along with a personal touch made the paper outstanding in its class.
He left the writing of high-powered and weighty editorials to the metropolitan papers, while he sought out the homey news items
that concerned the everyday life of his readers. His long reign of seventeen years in the eidtor's chair formed an important
chapter in the local history of journalism, and the developement, of Culver .
On July 9, 1923. Mr. Holt reliquished his interest to M. R. Robinson and F. C. Leitnaker, a partnership which continued until 1926,
when Mr. Robinson purchased his partner's interest. Editor Robinson contolled the paper until two weeks ago when he sold his
interest to Major Maull.
Located at 200 East Washington street, the building was erected by the James I Barnes Construction Company under the supervisdon
of Russell I. Barnes [?Easterday?], manager. The electrical lighting was engineered by James E. Tally. The building is 60 by 90 feet with
streets on three sides.
The building amd layout of machinery have attracted the attention of newspaper men and printers from over a wide area. It is
genreally agreed that the plant and the equipment is among the best of the weekly newspapers and commercial printing shops.
Modern and complete equipment are ultilized to efficiently enable the production of printing of the highest quality and range.
For layout and design and treatment of copy the Citizen has been commended several times. In the beginning the paper was a
five-column, eight-page paper. Around the turn of the century it ran eight columns in a six-page edition. In 1934 the format was
changed to the present five-column by seventeen inch size. Each edition now runs from sixteen to thirty-two pages and is mailed
each Wednesday noon to more than fifteen hundred subscribers.
The citizen has had four homes during the 55 years of its existence. The community's first newspaper was begun, in a small
restricted space, in a small one-story frame building located on the west side of main street between Jefferson and Madison
streets. It was bout where Oberlin's store is today. The building used by Nearpass was an old photograph gallery, which at one
time stood somewhere nearly west of the present site of Van Meter's building on Lake Shore Drove, then known as Toner Ave.
When the need for a larger building became evident, the plant was moved to a two-story fram building at the corner of Main and
Washington streets where Johnson's Super Service is now located. In a few years another move was made, this time a half block
down the street to the present home of the V.F.W. At first The Citizen occupied only one-half of this building, but later
expanded until all of the first floor and the basement were needed to house additional equipment.
Finally the paper again needed more space and the present building was constructed, and the prodigious and nerve-racking job of
moving starting May 8, 1946, with completion four days later.
The physical equipment of the Citizen has changed considerably though these years. The first issue of the Marmont Hearald was
printed on an old Washington hand-press, with all type set by hand from three cases of type. The balance of the equipment was
a foot-pummped job press of an ancient vintage and a printer's stone.
Publication day was an occasion of much excitement and activity for all power was furnished by hand. Sumner Wiseman wo uld feed
the sheets of paper into the press, Ed Gandy wo uld roll the ink onto the forms after each sheet had been printed. George E.
Nearpass, III, then a boy, wo uld take the papers off the press with Harry Medbourn as his helper. Tim Wolfe and many others
helped fold the sheets by hand and do the mailing.
The equipment was gradually improved and added to through the years, but it wasn't until around 1917 that the reading matter was
set by machine instead of the tedious and slow hand provcess. Since 1923 there has been a steady addition of new and modern
machinery until today there isn't a single piece of equipement in The Citizen plant that was there 24 years ago. Now, The Citizen
has one of the most modern printing plants in the state.