Begun in 1861 as a four-page weekly newspaper called the Westfield (Staten Island) Times, the newspaper later renamed the Staten Island Transcript became increasingly important in the 1890’s. The Transcript, by serving Tottenville faithfully, grew to a semi-weekly newspaper serving the entire South Shore of Staten Island with 12 to 16 pages.
In 1898, the Transcript reported on such historic events as the Spanish American War, the concrete battery built at Ward’s Point, and informed its readers about the consolidation of New York City. When the Tottenville Library opened, the Transcript was there to report about the work of the Philemon Library & Historical Society. The society, first called the Philemon Club when it began in 1897, had as its primary goal the attainment of a Carnegie grant for a public library in Tottenville, They attained this grant in 1904. In 1928 its readers learned of the opening of the Outerbridge Crossing, and in 1936 read about the opening of the new, million dollar Tottenville High School.
While I was writing in the late nineties for the Midland Beach Beacon, later to become the South Shore Business Alliance Tornado, I was part of an experiment to see if Tottenville readership could sustain a newspaper called the Tottenville Tornado. Unfortunately, the time was not right, and it never got beyond its initial issue. Now, however, after encouragement from other writers and editors to write a blog, the timing seems to be so much better. What I started back then in print is now growing exponentially on the Internet with this blog, and for that, I will be forever grateful.
When I was researching about starting a blog I repeatedly read just to keep going, and that the comments and email subscriptions to the blog would eventually show up. Writing a blog can be a lonely activity until the interactions begin, so I greatly appreciate anything you can do to help speed up the process.
If you want an email subscription, just click on that link to the left while you are thinking of it, and I look forward to your comments to grow this blog into not just something read, but into a community. Sharing the blog with your contacts on social media helps spread the word, too. Thanks.
Staten Island Transcript extant copies of the newspaper through the .NY Public Library
In addition, should you be interested in the former Staten Island Register, where I was an investigative reporter from 1997-2005, the NY Public Library can help you there, too.