Editorial: Newspapers awash in history and happenings

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‘Don’t Kill the Messenger, Notes from the Editor’s desk’

by Tasiyagnunpa Livermont


Recognize these handsome lads? Help Phillip Earl Kensler’s son, Lyle Earl Kensler, find out more about his father’s friends in the picture. Phillip Earl Kensler (pictured in center) Date of birth: 04/12/1912 Date of death: 11/12/1954 His father’s name: Charles Kensler Date of birth: 10/04/1876 Date of death: 11/01/1928? His mother’s name: Nellie Rose Brown Date of birth: 11/04/1888 Date of death: 12/03/1949. Courtesy photo.

Recognize these handsome lads? Help Phillip Earl Kensler’s son, Lyle Earl Kensler, find out more about his father’s friends in the picture.
Phillip Earl Kensler (pictured in center) Date of birth: 04/12/1912
Date of death: 11/12/1954 His father’s name: Charles Kensler Date of birth: 10/04/1876 Date of death: 11/01/1928? His mother’s name: Nellie Rose Brown Date of birth: 11/04/1888 Date of death: 12/03/1949. Courtesy photo.

Newspaper offices are strange destinations, full of curiosities-past and present.

Behind the dust of an old filing cabinet or long lost in a drawer from back when so-and-so worked here, back in the day before media consolidation or computers, you know, back in those old days, come black and white or sepia photos and yellowed scraps of paper.

There’s even the morgue–the back room full of old editions of the newspaper going back sometimes a century or a bit more. Certainly, there’s also our overflowing inboxes of paper and email, ringing phones, complete with freshly submitted bits of history, new yet familiar.

The latter being the case a week or so ago, when our manager, Nancy Anderson, took an interesting phone call from a gentleman looking for information about an old photograph of his father and some boyhood pals.

Newspaper offices have a lot in common with the local libraries and the local museums and historical societies.

In journalism school they teach us the adage that, “Journalism is history in the making.”

Indeed we often are in the business of documenting, and in some ways, creating history. When approached from the perspective of history, it makes us a bit more aware that we won’t only be judged by today’s readers, but by tomorrow’s, as well.

While a serious thing, indeed, this historical aspect to newspapering, we sometimes get to indulge in a little history hunting ourselves.

So when Mr. Lyle Earl Kensler called our office hoping we could raise a little awareness to his family history project, we decided to adopt his cause as our own.

Our hope is that one or more of our readers will have some information about this photo that we are reprinting at the request of Kensler. If you do please feel free to contact the office, because we will be doing follow up on where this bit of photo sleuthing leads.

Perhaps there are other old photos out there, begging for answers, hiding in old drawers documenting our local stories, hidden in the hands of our readers. If this is the case, feel free to submit those to us, too, and we will print them as we have space.

Matters of history abound this week, it seems. With some promising snow and slick roads, I ended up missing the Ziebach County Historical Society annual meeting on Monday, January 28, 2013. Sounds like they had a good time, and I look forward to their next shindig.

With the 2013 SD legislative season upon us, my oldest son and I traveled to Pierre last week for the SD Newspaper Association’s legislative day. We spent quite a bit of time hearing things we already knew and meeting people we didn’t know. Thanks to me getting a bit lost, we took a quick tour of the capital. My son was quite impressed with the artwork and sculptures there and has been reading up on the works ever since.

Speaking of legislature and communication, we realized this week that the paper’s general email account was fritzing out. Our apologies to those affected, and specifically, Rep. Dean Schrempp, whose office had been regularly sending us updates that we never received to publish.

I hope history, and Rep. Schrempp, won’t judge us too harshly for this mishap.

 

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