Hannibal History: Newspaper lured young readers with special pages
Written by Mary Lou Montgomery
The Hannibal Courier-Post has long been interested in gaining the readership of children, as evidenced by a copy of the Evening Courier-Post published Feb. 19, 1908.
A special section was “published every week especially for the little folks of big Courier-Post family of readers.”
One full page was devoted to children and included stories to interest them, stories written by the children them selves, and junior letters.
Stories by the children were published and prizes were awarded for the best efforts. Some of the stories and letters follow.
Dorsie Hedberg, 12
It was a cold, windy day. Little Harry was busily shoveling snow in the outskirts of a large city. A young man happening along, made light of him. “Well, it is honest,” replied Harry, “and I hope that I may be able to do something greater some day.”
Years passed by slowly by and time has found enterprising Harry at the head of a large dry goods department and this same young man shoveling his snow.
Dear Junior: As this is the first time I have written to you, I will try to do the best I can.
My school was out last Friday. We had a few speeches and songs. We had a nice treat.
My father takes the Courier-Post and I read all of the letters and think they are very nice. I will close for this time. Yours Truly, Gladys Evans, 11, of Center.
Dear Junior: I have received three postals and think they are very pretty. I attend school at the convent. I like my teacher. I have lots of little playmates. Every Friday night I read the letters in the paper. We study six books. I like reading the best of all. I guess that’s all so good-bye. Emma M’Leod, age 11, of 300 Chestnut.
Dear Junior: I will write you a letter, as this is the first one I have ever written to you. I go to the Lutheran School and I like my teacher very much. Her name is Miss Mangels.
I am nine years old. I have one sister, her name s Madeline. She is 10 years old and in the A 4th grade. Last Friday was Valentine Day, and I got six valentines. I would like to receive a postal card. I guess I will close for this time. Good-bye.
Josephine Seeger, 1310 Collier.
Dear Junior: I am a little girl and only seven years old, and I stay with my grandmother. I never went to school very much; the children taught me at home, but I can read and write very well. This is my first letter and I’m not going to write very much. It is snowing now. There are two or three inches now. I have on brother and we live in Saverton. Adel Williams, Box 18, Saverton.
A SLEIGH RIDE
Eva Beshears, Center
One cold winter evening when the snow was on the ground about a food and we were all lonesome sitting around, father said that he would hitch up to the sleigh and take us to Vandalia to see our aunt, and stay all night. It is 12 miles to Vandalia. We had a very pleasant time, for that was the first time we had gone sleigh riding that winter. It was on Saturday evening.
I thank you for the prize for having the best story written last week.
MY FAVORITE PET
Lillian Donovan, 11,
My favorite pet is my coon, whose name is Buster. He eats bread and milk, blackberries, frogs, meat and many other things. He will sit up and shake hands with me. He does not like strangers. He plays with the dog and cat. I have lots of pets, but my favorite is my coon.
My pets are: My dog, whose name is Harold; to canary birds, and two little bantam hens. I like all of my pets.
My dog will sit up and bark and roll over when I want him to. My dog candy better than bread or meat.