|Headquarters||780 County Street, Somerset, Massachusetts 02726
|Area served||South Coast of Massachusetts|
|Key people||William T. Kennedy, publisher
Warren G. Hathaway, publisher emeritus
|Parent||Dow Jones, 1997-2007
News Corporation, 2007-2013
GateHouse Media, since 2013
Hathaway Publishing is a subsidiary of The Local Media Group Inc., itself a division of Newcastle Investment Corporation. Hathaway publishes five weekly newspapers in the South Coast region of Massachusetts.
Owned by the Hathaway family until 1997, the company is now partners with its former competitor, the Ottaway daily The Standard-Times of New Bedford, Massachusetts. Together, the two companies comprise Ottaway's South Coast Media Group. William T. Kennedy serves as publisher of both properties, although former owner Warren G. Hathaway is publisher emeritus of the weeklies. Both Hathaway and The Standard-Times contribute to a regional Website, SouthCoastToday.com.
News Corp. acquired Ottaway when it bought parent company Dow Jones & Company for US$5 billion in late 2007. Rupert Murdoch, the head of News Corp., reportedly told investors before the deal that he would be "selling the local newspapers fairly quickly" after the Dow Jones purchase.
On September 4, 2013, News Corp announced that it would sell the Dow Jones Local Media Group to Newcastle Investment Corp.—an affiliate of Fortress Investment Group, for $87 million. The newspapers will be operated by GateHouse Media, a newspaper group owned by Fortress. News Corp. CEO and former Wall Street Journal editor Robert James Thomson indicated that the newspapers were "not strategically consistent with the emerging portfolio" of the company. GateHouse in turn filed prepackaged Chapter 11 bankruptcy on September 27, 2013, to restructure its debt obligations in order to accommodate the acquisition.
Hathaway published four newspapers at the time Ottaway bought it: The Advocate, The Chronicle, the Middleboro Gazette and The Spectator. The Somerset, Massachusetts-based family company was founded by Sidney L. Hathaway Jr., who established The Spectator there in 1932. In 2003, Ottaway added the fifth newspaper, The Fall River Spirit.
- The Advocate
- Founded as a weekly newspaper for Fairhaven, Massachusetts, in 1979, The Advocate was acquired by Hathaway in the 1990s and is now based at The Standard-Times' offices at 25 Elm Street, New Bedford. In addition to Fairhaven, the newspaper also covers news and sports in Acushnet, Massachusetts.
- The Advocate prints every Thursday. Its circulation in 2006 was given as 2,224.
- The Chronicle
- Originally called The Dartmouth News in 1936, the weekly for Dartmouth and Westport, Massachusetts, called itself "Informative and Entertaining, Invaluable to Home Folks." It was sold in 1969 to Warren Hathaway, who changed the paper's name to The Chronicle. The paper is now based at 45 Slocumb Road, Dartmouth.
- The Chronicle prints every Wednesday. Its circulation in 2006 was given as 5,000.
- The Fall River Spirit
- The youngest of the Hathaway newspapers, The Spirit is also the company's only free weekly newspaper, boasting a Thursdays-only circulation of 10,500 within the city limits of Fall River, Massachusetts.
- The Spirit's first edition was October 30, 2003. The newspaper focuses on features and community news in a mid-size city -- "It's about real life, a city's life, made up of a million little moments of human interaction and companionship," as the newspaper's Website says -- competing with The Herald News of Fall River on its home turf. Although the newspaper covers Fall River, its offices are at 780 County Street in Somerset.
- Middleboro Gazette
- Claiming to be "one of the oldest newspapers in Massachusetts," the Middleboro Gazette was established in 1852 to cover Middleborough, Massachusetts (which then included Lakeville, the other half of the Gazette coverage area). Hathaway bought the Gazette in 1973. Its office is at 148 West Grove Street, Middleborough.
- The Gazette in 2006 averaged 5,700 copies sold each Thursday.
- The Spectator
- First published June 30, 1932, The Spectator originally cost 10 cents. The flagship of the Hathaway chain, it has been headquartered at 780 County Street, Somerset, since 1939. Founding editor and publisher Sidney Hathaway relinquished control of the paper to his son, Warren, in the 1970s.
- The Spectator primarily covers Somerset and Swansea, Massachusetts, but also circulates in Dighton and Rehoboth. Its circulation in 2006 was given at 6,000.
- Bushnell, Davis. "It's Independents' Day No More." The Boston Globe, December 28, 1997
- SouthCoast Media Marketing Guide, accessed January 10, 2007.
- "Ottaway Papers Might Be Sold, Including 16 in N.E.". NEPA Bulletin (Boston, Mass.), December 2007, page 3.
- "News Corp. sells 33 papers to New York investors". New York Business Journal. Retrieved 4 September 2013.
- "GateHouse Files for Bankruptcy as Part of Fortress Plan". Bloomberg.
- SouthCoastToday.Com: The Advocate, accessed January 10, 2007
- SouthCoastToday.Com: The Chronicle, accessed January 10, 2007
- SouthCoastToday.Com: The Fall River Spirit, accessed January 10, 2007
- SouthCoastToday.Com: The Middleboro Gazette, accessed January 10, 2007
- SouthCoastToday.Com: The Spectator, accessed January 10, 2007