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The Ledger is a daily newspaper serving Lakeland, Florida and the Polk County area.

The Ledger
LakelandLedger 20170101 A01.jpg
The January 1, 2017 front page of The Ledger.
Type Daily newspaper
Format Broadsheet
Owner(s) New Media Investment Group
Publisher Brian Burns
Editor Bob Heist
Founded August 22, 1924
Headquarters Lakeland, Florida
ISSN 0163-0288
OCLC number 187953892

The paper was founded on August 22, 1924 as the Lakeland Evening Ledger. In 1927, it bought its main competitor, the morning Lakeland Star-Telegram. By 1930, it was obvious that Lakeland could not support two papers, so Ledger Publishing Company merged the two papers into a single morning paper, the Lakeland Ledger and Star-Telegram. In 1941, Star-Telegram was dropped from the masthead, and in 1967 the name was shortened to simply The Ledger.

The New York Times Company bought The Ledger in 1970 and owned it until 2012, when it sold its entire regional newspaper group to Halifax Media.[1] In 2015, Halifax was acquired by New Media Investment Group.[2]

Jerome Ferson became publisher of the newspaper on July 30, 2007. Kevin Drake became publisher of the newspaper on January 21, 2014. [3] In October 2016, Drake left The Ledger to return to his hometown of Spartanburg, S.C. to work as a group publisher for GateHouse Media. [4]

Brian Burns, former publisher of The Tampa Tribune, joined The Ledger as publisher on January 25, 2017.[5]

According to, approximate circulation is 65,987; on Sunday, 81,366. In 2010 Alliance for Auditing approved a rule change allowing traditional print newspapers to combine their online readership to their print circulation. Actual circulation data for print delivery subscriptions is no longer reported.[6]

The Ledger also publishes "Polk Life" magazine.


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