Held at: Radnor Historical Society [Contact Us]113 West Beech Tree Lane, Wayne, PA, 19087
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Radnor Historical Society. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
"Following a few years of tiny papers issued by amateurs after the Civil War and the founding of "Louella," as Wayne [Delaware County, Pennsylvania] was called by its founder, Henry Askin, in 1870, the first permanent newspaper came on the local scene. It was called The Wayne Times, and was founded by the Pinkerton brothers, with Charles Stewart as editor...
"Just when The Suburban-as an independent entity-came on the scene is indeterminate, since no copy of the first edition exists; there are a few copies from the 1890's, in one of which it would appear that the first edition of The Suburban-as a separate paper-actually was published in September 1885, two months prior to the advent of The Wayne Times...The exact date of their merger is unknown, but appears to have been prior to 1900.
"Following a series of part-time editors and owners, whose names are lost to history, The Suburban and Wayne Times finally got a "career editor" at the beginning of 1900. His name was Albert M. Ehart, who hailed from Lyons, New York and came here at the request of a friend, Charles Kennedy, who saw opportunity here. The "opportunity" was "qualified," to say the least. In a short time, Bert Ehart owned the paper in lieu of back, unpaid salary, buying out its then-owner, Mr. Stewart...
"Bert Ehart, who had worked for several years on a large metropolitan paper, The Brooklyn Eagle, brought professionalism to the job. He remained in it for the next 63 years, although in later years, sidelined by illness, he remained at home, writing, while his wife, Anna Dunne Ehart, and two sons built up the business during and after World War II. He died in 1963, at the advanced age of 96...
"During World War II, The Suburban [ and Wayne Times] made many lifetime friends of the servicemen and women of this community. Mrs. Ehart produced a page of "Servicemen's News" every week, despite the paper's small eight page size and a severe shortage of newsprint. The paper was sent-free of charge-to every one of those in the service throughout the war. That paved the way for unprecedented reader loyalty in succeeding decades.
"What may be su[r]prising to some is that this very small paper ran editorials on national and international affairs, as well as local, even as early as 1906. The reason was clear-cut: Wayne was a far more sophisticated community than might be inferred from its size. Its homeowners included numerous men of substance in the financial and industrial powers of the time. Some of them had worldwide interests in the arts, politics and finance, many of them visiting Europe frequently.
"Local news, however, took priority. The churches, schools, sports, obituaries and "Personal Mentions" were the stuff of everyday newspapering...In 1980, the Ehart brothers were receiving offers to sell The Suburban [ and Wayne Times}. One of these proved to be an offer they could not refuse. Following the sale of the papers in early 1981 to Ralph Ingersoll, Bill Ehart left the business after 30 years of distinguished effort and went into real estate...Dan Ehart remained as Editor of The Suburban [ and Wayne Times] for the next nine years...[until] he was "terminated" in December, 1990 after 45 years on the job."
Geographically, the paper covered the area known as the "Main Line" along the former Pennsylvania Railroad train route through Philadelphia's western suburbs, including towns from Bala Cynwyd to Malvern. On January 14, 2009, the Suburban and Wayne Times merged with the Main Line Life newspaper to form the new periodical Main Line and Suburban Life, whose parent company is Main Line Media News.
Quoted text from: Ehart, Daniel N. "Newspapering on the Main Line." The Bulletin of the Radnor Historical Society Vol. V, no. 6 (1996): 13-19. Accessed on April 3, 2014. http://www.radnorhistory.org/bulletin/RHSBulletin.5-6.1996.pdf.
Murray, Tom. "Happy Birthday Main Line Suburban Life." Editor's Corner (blog). January 5, 2011 (5:46 a.m.). Accessed March 26, 2014. http://mainlineeditor.blogspot.com/.
This collection consists of prints, contact sheets, and negatives of photographs taken by the Suburban and Wayne Times for possible publication in the newspaper. The collection is roughly sorted by date, and sometimes by subject. There are also some circulation department carrier/dealer statements, circa 2007, for Suburban Publications Inc., the paper's publishing company.
Also associated with this collection are original editions of the Suburban and Wayne Times. The full run of the paper (1885-2009) is on permanent loan from Main Line Media News to the Radnor Historical Society and is stored off-site at the Radnor Township municipal building.
Gift of Main Line Media News, circa 2010.
Summary descriptive information on this collection was compiled in 2012-2014 as part of a project conducted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania to make better known and more accessible the largely hidden collections of small, primarily volunteer run repositories in the Philadelphia area. The Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories (HCI-PSAR) was funded by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
This is a preliminary finding aid. No physical processing, rehousing, reorganizing, or folder listing was accomplished during the HCI-PSAR project.
In some cases, more detailed inventories or finding aids may be available on-site at the repository where this collection is held; please contact Radnor Historical Society directly for more information.
- Radnor Historical Society
- Finding Aid Author
- Finding aid prepared by Celia Caust-Ellenbogen and Sarah Leu through the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories
- This preliminary finding aid was created as part of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories. The HCI-PSAR project was made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
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