Iconic Maine Newspaper Ceases Operation After 135 Years
Employees were notified Tuesday that the daily's last edition will be October 12th.
Readers across Southern Maine were shocked Tuesday to learn that a staple since the 1800's would be printing their last issue within a few weeks. Biddeford's Journal Tribune announced the paper would be shuttered, effective October 12th. Masthead Maine CEO Lisa DeSisto, publisher of the Journal Tribune cited declining subscribers, and decreased ad revenue were contributing factors in the decision. According to the article, Masthead Maine acquired the paper from Sample News Group on April 1, 2018. DeSisto wrote “When we finished 2018, the Journal Tribune was unprofitable. We set a goal to turn it around and in the first quarter we came close to that, but then it went upside down again.”
They reportedly reviewed a few options, such as converting it to digital, or making it part of the Portland Press Herald, but a shutdown was considered the only viable option. DeSisto said "When we realized the Portland Press Herald has three times the distribution in the Journal Tribune coverage area and the market is already well served by the Mainely Media weekly publications, closure became the best option.”
The storied newspaper dates back to Saturday evening, Jan. 5, 1884, according to the article. Six staff members will be laid off, while others will be joining the staff of Mainely Media. Sports, and other regional coverage will be addressed as well.