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About The monitor. (Omaha, Neb.) 1915-1928 | View Entire Issue (July 3, 1915)
A Weekly Newspaper devoted to the civic, social and religious
interests of the Colored People of Omaha and vicinity, with the desire
to contribute something to the general good and upbuilding of the
Published Every Saturday.
Application made for entry at the Postoffice, Omaha, Neb., as
second-class mail matter, under Act of Congress, March 3, 1879.
THE REV. JOHN ALBERT WILLIAMS. Editor and Publisher.
Lucille Skaggs Edwards, William Garnett Haynes and Ellsworth W.
Pryor, Associate Editors.
SUBSCRIPTION RATES, $1.00 per year.
Advertising rates on application.
Address, The Monitor, 1119 North Twenty-first street, Omaha.
This is the first issue of The Moni
tor, a weekly newspaper published
primarily in the intertsts of the 8,000
colored Americans in Omaha and
vicinity, to chronicle their social and
religious activities and to discuss
matters of peculiar importance ' to
them as touching their civic and eco
nomic rights, duties, opportunities
and privileges. Further than this, it
has as its general aim and purpose
the contributing^ of something to the
upbuilding and good of the commu
nity, to the dissemination of infor
mation bearing on race progress
throughout the country and to the
formation of a sound and righteous
The first editorial in the first issue
of The Monitor gives opportunity for
explanation and forecast. We take
it to tell WHY we have come TO BE
and WHAT we hope TO BECOME.
The Monitor has come into being
to satisfy a popular demand, to meet
an urgent need, namely, that of a
special publication, and mouthpiece
for the colored people of this commu
nity. And this need, it is only fair
to point out, is the result of educa
tion along this line on the part of
others, to whom full credit should be
given for their laudable endeavors.
We have been educated to appreciate
the value and usefulness of a pub
lication of our own by The Progress,
a pioneer in this field, published for
some years by F. L. Barnett; and The
Enterprise, founded by the late G. F.
Franklin, and continued, until a few
months ago, by T. P. Maliammitt; not
forgetting two or three other later and
shorter-lived publications like the
Afro-American Sentinel, published by
Cyrus D. Bell, and The Progressive
Age, by G. Wade Obee. All these
publications, whatever their faults or
limitations may have been, have had
their influence in educating our peo
ple to appreciate the usefulness and
need of such race journals. This is
especially true of the two first-named.
Moreover, it may be just as well to
point out, in passing, that these pub
lications. limited in resources though
they were, gave employment to some
of our boys and girls, who otherwise
might have been unemployed. Let us
The necessity for a local weekly,
such as The Monitor aims to be, is
due to the fact that colored Ameri
cans, like other race groups in our
poly gen ous, or many-raced ''—
which is still in the process of na
tionalization-form a distinct and
well-defined social group, having their
classes and gradations, with their
separate social and religious activi
ties. Their standards and ideals, in
corresponding classes, are those of the
communities in which they live, PRO
VIDED that they are permitted to
come into helpful contact with those
standards and ideals; but at the same
time, there is a large inner circle of
activities which belongs exclusively
to themselves. These need to be
noted, discussed, directed and encour
aged or reproved, as the case may be.
This is the province of the newspaper
of the special group. The larger
daily, and we in this community are
favored with a fair-minded and friend
ly press, thinks and speaks in the
terms of the whole community—not
of any particular class. The special
group, the special interest, must have
its special organ.
Then, again, there may arise mat
ters affecting the rights of a particu
lar class which, in the larger com
munity life the daily serves, may be
overlooked. Then it becomes the
duty of the special organ to speak.
The peculiar place unfortunately as
signed to the colored American, even
in the most favored communities
where he is found in any appreciable
number, makes it expedient that he
shall have a newspaper of his own,
devoted especially to his interests.
It has its educational value for ntm
and also for his white neighbor, if
he will read it. Papers of this class
can be of good service in a commu
The Monitor hopes to fill an honor
able and useful place in its chosen
field in this community, full of splen
did possibilities. It will strive to
gather news of interest, local and
general; it will give from time to time
illustrated articles of our homes and
people; It will publish articles from
special writers to make its readers
think; it will welcome short letters
on timely tor s from its readers.
Its editorial k licy will be independ
ent, frank and fearless, courteous and
kind, sane and conservative. We
shall strive to make it a paper of
such a high standard that it can be
read with pleasure and profit in any
home in the land.
We have abundant grounds for en
couragement in the growing senti
ment in many parts of the country
to remove causes of irritation by for
bidding the presentation of moving
pictures and plays which misrepresent
our race and create prejudice. In
this connection the action of the
Pittsburg, Pa., city council, noted on
the first page of this issue, is signifi
cant and highly gratifying to all lov
ers of truth and justice. Similar ac
tion has been taken in other cities.
Should an attempt be made to "show
these photoplays here, we know that
our mayor and city commission will
fall in line with the authorities of
Boston, Chicago, Pittsburg, Cleveland,
St. Paul and other cities in forbidding
their presentation with the objection
able features against which protest
has been made.
Equally gratifying and significant is
the recent decision of the supreme
court in declaring the unconstitution
ality of the ‘grandfather clauses” in
the constitutions of Oklahoma and
Maryland. The decision of the court
was unanimous. No less significant
than the decision has been the hearty
endorsement by the press of the coun
try of its righteousness and justice.
Of course, there have been some not
able exceptions, but their number is
relatively negligible. The majority
favor it and the consensus of opinion
upon the part of the leading newspa
pers of the country is to the effect
that, the decision strikes the death
blow to those discriminatory laws
which favor one class of citizens
above another and in so doing are
subversive of the fundamental prin
ciples upon which democracy rests.
Let us do our full duty and never
doubt that day will break and right
It is with pleasure that we publish
as our first cut that of Richard B.
Harrison, the talented dramatic read
er, who gives two recitals at St.
John’s A. M. E. church next week.
Mr. Harrison and the editor were
born in London, Ontario, Canada,
about the same tune and were bovs
together. Subsequently both families
removed to Detroit, Mich., where the
friendship continued. Richard car
ried the London Advertiser and the |
editor of The Monitor had his first
and only thrill as "a millionaire”—
have you ever had it?—when, as a
lad of seven or eight years of age,
he earned his FIRST FIVE CENTS
selling Advertisers. It is with great
pleasure, therefore, that we have the
opportunity of thus publicly welcom
ing Mr. Harrison to Omaha, the great
city of the west, in which for twenty
four years we have been permitted to
labor in our chosen calling.
There are some features of this
publication of which we are particu
larly proud. We have been fortunate
in securing the co-operation of Mrs.
Lucille Skaggs Edwards, who ts'to
serve as editor of the special depart
ment, “For Our Women and Chil
dren”; of Mr. William O. Haynes, who
will be the editor of “Science Notes,”
and of Mr. E. W. Pryor, who will edit
“Culinary Hints and Recipes." What
each has said in this first issue indi
cates the ability with which these de
partments will be conducted.
Personally, we prefer to ride in the
street cars. They are good enough
for us. But if we should desire to
ride in a jitney, we wish to have that
privilege. And that reminds us to
j call our readers’ attention to the fact
that Omaha has a good street car
system. The company gives good
service aDd is improving and extend
ing its service as rapidly as can rea
sonably be expected.
The ordinance to regulate jitneys,
which was recently passed by the
city commission, places them in the
same class with other public vehicles
for the transportation of passengers.
Any discrimination, therefore, upon
their part which is not applicable to
all passengers alike is unlawful. A
hint to the wise is sufficient.
The Monitor is published in the in
terests of all the people. It is not
a denominational or a factional pa
per of any kind. We want this clear
ly and definitely understood at the
LI IT OK THE FIRST FIFTY
1. Dr. W. W. Peebles.
2. E. VV. Pryor.
3. Joseph Carr.
4. J. W. Headley.
5. Dr. C. H. Singleton.
6. Dr. L. E. Britt.
7. William Walker.
8. General Scott.
9. Rev. W. T. Osborne.
10. H. J. Pinkett.
11. Oliver A. Moore.
12. Amos P. Scruggs.
13. W. R. Miles. i
14. Bishop A. L. Williams.
J5. Mrs. Fanny M. Dickerson, Lan
16. Dan Desdunes.
17. William Lewis.
18. Simon Harold.
19. Nate Hunter.
20. W. A. Smith.
21. S. T. Brooks, Brooklyn, N. Y.
22. Silas Robbins.
23. Josiah Brown.
24. Charles W. Dickerson.
25. Dr. J. H. Hutten.
26. James G. Jewell.
27. Alphonso Wilson.
28. Dillard Simpson.
29. S. T. Phannix.
30. Raymond J. Knox, Kansas City,
31. M. F. Singleton.
32. George W. Gray.
33. Charles H. Hicks.
34. A. Chisley.
35. Jesse Snell.
36. T. C. Ross.
77. J. H. Broomfield.
38. Thomas Reese.
39. T. S. Muldrew.
40. C. W. Wigington, St. Paul, Minn.
41. Mrs. J. W. Wallace.
42. J. Knox O’Neil.
43. A. P. Simmons.
44. H. M. Smith.
45. George H. Ashby.
46. Paul P. Wigington.
47. J. Holmes.
48. Sergeant I ,aac Bailey.
49. T. F. Quirlin.
50. Rev. W. F. Bolts.
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