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About Missoulian

The Missoulian newspaper offers the most comprehensive news, sports and entertainment in the region. Readers in Missoula and the surrounding area rely on the Missoulian to deliver local, national, feature, entertainment and sports news that is meaningful to their lives. The Missoulian offers not only award-winning journalists and photographers to capture events and news, but delivers an attractive well-written product to readers’ doorsteps every day.

The history of the Missoulian dates back to 1870, when a pair of businessmen decided the Missoula Valley would be a good place to start a newspaper. The first press, loaded onto a wagon that was pulled by a four-horse team, came from Helena and arrived in Missoula in August 1870; the paper that would eventually be called the Missoulian first came out on Sept. 15, 1870. At the time, it was called the Missoula and Cedar Creek Pioneer; by 1873, though, the paper’s name had been changed to the Missoulian.

The paper’s early owners were businessmen who believed (as is still true) that prosperous towns needed prosperous newspapers. They also were not shy about using the paper to promote their various interests or to take a shot or two at a rival. In 1917, Joe Dixon, a businessman and firebrand Montana politician who had increasingly attracted the ire of the then-powerful Anaconda Co., was the owner of the paper — but he was growing weary of the business and quietly put out the word that he wanted to sell. When the dust of a confusing transaction had cleared, Dixon had sold the paper — unwittingly, he said — to men who turned out to be fronting for Anaconda.

For the next 50 years, the Missoulian, and most of the other daily papers in Montana, were owned by Anaconda, which was known for using its papers to promote its own views and for suppressing news it didn’t want reported.

In 1959, Anaconda sold the Missoulian and its other Montana papers and properties to Lee Enterprises of Iowa. In 1985, the paper moved to a new home on the banks of the Clark Fork River in downtown Missoula.

Missoula resonates with blue mountain majesties, fresh water rivers, culture, a trade center, education & medicine in a diverse community that lends itself to a healthy lifestyle of recreation, tourist getaways, a growing economy and a supreme quality of life. By providing a forum to discuss problems and issues that challenge and affect us all, the Missoulian proves itself to be an important part of the social glue that holds the community together. 

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