Selma Times-Journal

The Selma Times-Journal is a five-day-a-week newspaper located in Selma, Alabama. It publishes every day of the week except Sunday and Monday. The Saturday paper is called the "Weekend Edition". It is owned by Tuscaloosa, Alabama-based Boone Newspapers Inc.

Selma Times-Journal
Selma December 2018 28 (Selma Times-Journal).jpg
Selma Times-Journal building
TypeDaily (except Mondays)
Owner(s)Boone Newspapers Inc.
PublisherDennis Palmer
EditorAdam Powell


The paper was founded as the Selma Courier on November 2, 1827, by Thomas Jefferson Frow.[1]

The newspaper was later known by various names, including the Selma Free Press, Selma Reporter, and Selma Daily News. During the American Civil War, the newspaper's press was torched by Union Army troops following the Battle of Selma (see Selma, Alabama in the American Civil War).[1] The paper then merged with the weekly Selma Messenger to form the Times Messenger. The paper then merged with the Selma Argus (becoming the Times-Argus), and then with the Selma Evening Mail (becoming the Selma Times). In 1889, the paper changed its name to the Morning Times.[1] In 1914, Frazier Titus Raiford purchased the Selma Times, and on March 1, 1920, the paper merged with the Selma Journal to become the Selma Times-Journal.[2] Frazier Titus Raiford and his wife Mary Howard Raiford served as editors and publishers until Frazier died in 1936. Mary Raiford—Alabama's only female publisher—then ran the paper by herself for 23 years.[3]

In 1923, the paper editorialized against the Ku Klux Klan, writing, "Selma has no room within her confines for that ugly, malevolent institution of the devil known as Ku Kluxism."[4] In the later 1920s, the paper denounced James Thomas Heflin and his anti-Catholic demagoguery. In the 1930 election for governor, the paper supported the candidacy of Judge Benjamin M. Miller, "a noted foe of lynching and the Klan" and a supporter of Democratic presidential nominee Al Smith.[5]

During the civil rights movement, the Times-Journal attempted to provide balanced reporting, unlike many other Southern newspapers of the era. Nevertheless, the paper did publish "advertisements from the local White Citizens' Councils that included veiled threats and ... other advertisements purportedly showing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at a communist training session."[6] The paper provided meaningful coverage of the Selma to Montgomery marches. Journalists Gene Roberts and Hank Klibanoff, in their book The Race Beat: The Press, the Civil Rights Struggle, and the Awakening of a Nation, wrote: "Selma had something most other venues of civil rights activity did not: a local newspaper that visiting reporters could depend on. The Selma Times-Journal saw the historic importance of the story and took its responsibility seriously, providing detailed accounts that reporters found reliable."[7]

Kathryn Tucker Windham, a writer and storyteller, was a journalist and photographer with the Times-Journal in the mid-20th century, writing the column "Around our House" from 1950 to 1966.[8]


2018 Better Newspaper Contest - Alabama Press Association[9]Edit

Year Award Place Recipient
2018 Best Spot News Story 1st Blake Deshazo
2018 Best Business Story or Column 1st Justin Averette
2018 Best Sports News In-Depth Coverage 1st Thomas Scott, Alaina Denean Deshazo
2018 Best Sports Feature Story 1st Daniel Evans
2018 Best Local Sports Column 1st Daniel Evans
2018 Best Feature Photo 1st Alaina Denean Deshazo
2018 Best Spot News Photo 1st Alaina Denean Deshazo
2018 Online Breaking News Coverage 1st Blake Deshazo


  1. ^ a b c From Courier to Times-Journal, Selma Times-Journal (November 12, 2010).
  2. ^ Walter M. Jackson, The Story of Selma (1954), p. 473-74.
  3. ^ Alston Fitts, Selma: A Bicentennial History (University of Alabama Press, 2017), pp. 178-79.
  4. ^ Alston Fitts, Selma: A Bicentennial History (University of Alabama Press, 2017), pp. 181-82.
  5. ^ Alston Fitts, Selma: A Bicentennial History (University of Alabama Press, 2017), p. 185.
  6. ^ Barbara Harris Combs, From Selma to Montgomery: The Long March to Freedom (Routledge, 2014), p. 173.
  7. ^ Gene Roberts & Hank Klibanoff, The Race Beat: The Press, the Civil Rights Struggle, and the Awakening of a Nation (Knopf, 2006), p. 389.
  8. ^ Amalia K. Amaki & Priscilla N. Davis, Tuscaloosa (Arcadia Publishing, 2015), p. 21.
  9. ^ Langan, Jaclyn. "APA Better Newspaper Contest Award Winners Announced" (PDF). Alabama Press Association. Retrieved 13 July 2018.

External linksEdit