175 Years of Associated Press

The news agency Associated Press was founded 175 years ago in May 1846.

According to Wikipedia, which takes the date from New York Natives, the prime date is May 22, 1846, so we missed the anniversary by a couple days.

More from Wikipedia:

The Associated Press (AP) is an American non-profit news agency headquartered in New York City. Founded in 1846, it operates as a cooperative, unincorporated association. Its members are U.S. newspapers and broadcasters. AP news reports that it distributes to its members and customers are produced in English, Spanish, and Arabic.

By 2016, news collected by the AP was published and republished by more than 1,300 newspapers and broadcasters. The AP operates 248 news bureaus in 99 countries…As part of their cooperative agreement with the AP, most member news organizations grant automatic permission for the AP to distribute their local news reports.

The Associated Press was formed in May 1846 by five daily newspapers in New York City to share the cost of transmitting news of the Mexican–American War. The venture was organized by Moses Yale Beach (1800–68), second publisher of The Sun, joined by the New York Herald, the New York Courier and Enquirer, The Journal of Commerce, and the New York Evening Express.

According to Elmo Scott Watson’s History of Newspaper Syndicates instigator Moses Yale Beach had originated the idea of newspapers sharing content:

By an interesting coincidence, the man who first syndicated newspaper material later became one of the founders of the first American press association formed to gather and distribute news. He was Moses Y. Beach, owner and publisher of the New York Sun.

In December, 1841, Beach arranged to have a special messenger from Washington bring to New York a copy of President John Tyler’s annual message to congress. Thereupon he printed extra editions of one sheet containing it and sold them to a score of papers in the surrounding territory.

After 175 years AP remains one of the Big Three news agencies.

The AP Images Blog celebrates 175 years.


Dragging this item into the realm of comic strips…

For a few decades, from March 17, 1930 (above) to December 30, 1961 (below), the Associated Press’s AP Features syndicated comic strips. Among the famed cartoonists that worked in that bullpen was Milton Caniff, Noel Sickles, Al Capp, Frank Robbins, Don Flowers, Mel Graff, R.B.Fuller, and others. Allan Holtz has a few posts featuring AP comics.