The Telegraph (Alton)

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For other uses of "The Telegraph", see The Telegraph (disambiguation).
The Telegraph
Type Daily newspaper
Format Broadsheet
Owner(s) Civitas Media
Founded 1836
(as the Alton Telegraph)
Language English
Headquarters 111 East Broadway,
Alton, Illinois 62002,
United States
Circulation 19,554 daily[1]
ISSN 0897-456X

The Telegraph is an American daily newspaper published seven days a week in Alton, Illinois, serving the St. Louis Metro-East region. It is owned by Civitas Media, based in Davidson, North Carolina, which owns approximately 100 daily and weekly newspapers across 12 states. Civitas Media is a subsidiary of Philadelphia-based Versa Capital Management. [2]

It was founded in 1836 as the Alton Telegraph by Lawson A. Parks.[3] It is published seven days a week.[4] Until the 1970s, the Telegraph was known as the Alton Daily Telegraph and then the Alton Evening Telegraph[5]

In 1969, the Alton Telegraph was sued for defamation by a local builder, James C. Green. A jury awarded $9 million. The newspaper could not appeal unless it posted a $10 million bond, and instead declared bankruptcy, eventually settling for slightly more than its insurance limits.[6]

The Cousley family controlled the paper from 1889 to 1985, when they sold the paper to Ingersoll Publications, who had acquired the Suburban Journals the previous year.[7] When Ingersoll successor Journal Register exited the St. Louis market, The Telegraph was sold to Freedom Communications.[8]

Along with The Telegraph, Civitas Media also owns the Journal-Courier in nearby Jacksonville, Illinois, and the Sedalia Democrat in Missouri. These three newspapers, along with The Lima News in Ohio, constituted the Central Division of Freedom Communications before being sold to Ohio Community Media in May 2012 before becoming part of Civitas Media.[1][9]


  1. ^ a b Wursthorn, Michael (May 17, 2012). "News Release: Versa Buys Four Papers From Freedom Communications". Dow Jones LBO Wire. Retrieved June 8, 2012. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Lawson A. Parks[dead link] Retrieved on October 7, 2007
  4. ^ Alton Telegraph - daily newspaper in Alton, Illinois USA with local news and events
  5. ^ Ramsey, Donna. "Chronology of Alton Newspapers, 1832-1976." The Telegraph, July 3, 1976, Sec. D
  6. ^ | PointOfLaw Forum: Maag attorney Rex Carr's Green v. Alton Telegraph libel verdict
  7. ^ Ingersoll Buys Alton Telegraph
  8. ^ Freedom Communications to buy Telegraph in Alton
  9. ^ "OCM Purchases the Lima News". News-Democrat (Georgetown, Ohio). Retrieved June 11, 2012. 

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