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WHITNEY MESSENGER. The Whitney Messenger, the community newspaper of Whitney, Texas, was founded on November 2, 1883, by H. P. and J. O. Jones. Throughout its history the paper was owned and edited by a variety of people expressing different political views, but its most important duty from its founding in 1883 to the present was in reporting community events and carrying advertising for local merchants. The Mayes family's long relationship with the paper began in 1890, when it was sold to J. T. and D. S. Mayes. Several different members of the Mayes family controlled the paper until 1916. From 1916 to 1933 it was owned by J. L. Yarbro. From 1933 to 1951 it was once again run by the Mayes family. Leonard Webb bought the paper in 1951 and served as its editor for the next twenty-three years; he was also serving twenty-eight years as justice of the peace. After 1951 the newspaper had several different owners. The Whitney Messenger was published continuously from its founding in 1883 to the 1990s, except for a year and a half during World War II when its editor, L. B. Mayes, went to California to work in a defense plant. In 1991 the weekly newspaper was edited by Nelson Bryan and had a circulation of 450.


Hill County Historical Commission, A History of Hill County, Texas, 1853–1980 (Waco: Texian, 1980).

Lisa C. Maxwell


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Lisa C. Maxwell, "WHITNEY MESSENGER," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed March 31, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.