Issues of “The News Reporter” Highlight Early 20th Century Architecture

A black-and-white portrait of Larry Gantt.
Larry Gantt, editor of The News Reporter. This image was brightened for clarity.

More issue of The News Reporter from Whiteville, N.C. are now available thanks to our partner, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This batch adds issues from 1925-1927 to our North Carolina Newspapers collection and features photographs of some of the architectural marvels from the early 20th century.

These papers were processed from microfilm, meaning that photos from the earliest issues in 1912 are a little bit hard to see. This photo of the paper’s editor, Larry Gantt, was brightened for better visibility.

A black-and-white photo of a two-story, white house with tall columns at the front.
The R.E.L. Brown House in 1912. This image was brightened for clarity.

Despite the darkness of the photos, some of Chadbourn, N.C.’s notable landmarks are still recognizable in the paper. This photo of the R.E.L. Brown House, which still stands at 108 N. Howard Street in Chadbourn, shows the building’s distinctive columns. According to the North Carolina Architects & Builders biographical dictionary, the house was built in 1909. It was designed in the Colonial style by Joseph F. Leitner, an architect known in our state for his work in Wilmington, especially railroad buildings.

A black-and-white image of Chicago's Union Station from 1925.
Chicago’s Union Station, 1925

The popularity of railroads was still going strong more than 10 years later in this 1925 issue, when the paper ran a feature on Chicago’s Union Station called, “Latest Triumph in Railroading.” The article reads, “The station is without a doubt one of the finest and most efficiently designed railroad terminals in the world.” According to the station’s contemporary website, it cost $75 million and 10 years to build (that’s $1 billion in today’s money).

You can see more architecture from the early 1900s in the rest of the available issues of Whiteville’s The News Reporter or explore our North Carolina Newspapers collection by location, type of paper, and date. To see more materials from UNC Chapel Hill, you can visit their partner page and their libraries’ website.

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