The Victoria Advocate
|Owner(s)||Victoria Advocate Publishing|
|Publisher||John M. Roberts|
|Headquarters||311 East Constitution Street
Victoria, TX 77901
The Victoria Advocate is a daily newspaper independently published in Victoria, Texas. It is the second oldest paper in Texas and the oldest west of the Colorado River, dating back to May 8, 1846, following the Battle of Palo Alto during the Mexican War. The paper serves the communities of the Victoria metropolitan area, and currently runs a Sunday circulation of 27,268 issues.
The paper was founded in 1846 by publishers John D. Logan and Thomas Sterne of Van Buren, Arkansas, as a weekly publication named the Texan Advocate. The two men had previously founded the Frontier Whig two years earlier, and like the Whig, the Advocate was associated with the Whig Party during its initial stages. Famed journalist John Henry Brown was briefly employed as an editor for the paper in its first year. After the publication was renamed the Texian Advocate, ownership changed hands several times during the 1850s. In 1859, it was bought by Sam Addison White, who renamed the paper The Victoria Advocate and aligned it with the Democratic Party. Although the paper's ownership frequently changed in the next century, it remained supportive of the Democratic Party. As the city of Victoria grew in the latter part of the 19th century, the paper acted as a medium for citizens to voice their concerns for the changes. Under pressure, a daily format was released in 1897 by publisher James McDonald. He sold the paper to George Henry French in 1901, who remained for the next forty years. During that time, the paper prospered, increasing its size to about six to eight pages on average, and the circulation to 2,200 by 1942. In the next 25 years, the circulation grew to 20,000 with about 20 to 40 pages per day. The paper shed its Democratic label in 1980 after it was purchased by John M. Roberts, who recast the paper as politically independent.