Banner and ad from the 1903 Fairwater
The Fairwater Register.
Village of Fairwater, Wisconsin
Every Friday from 1903 to 1905, Elmer L. Howe published Fairwater's only newspaper.
Subscriptions at $1.00 for a full year; 5 cents per copy, began with the inaugural issue
of April 24, in which Howe expressed his hopes for the paper and his reasons for launching
For the past year or more the enterprising business men of this
village have, on various occasions, pointed out the necessities of a weekly newspaper at
this place, till at last we concluded to risk the venture. The Register, we trust, has
come to stay, though much of its success or failure lies with you, dear reader. There are
two things essential in the publication of a newspaper. The leading one is the ability of
the management to make the financial ends meet, which rests largely on the liberality of
the business men of the city or village in which the paper is published. Therefore, we
have placed confidence in the progressive people of this village and firmly believe they
will, as we know they can, produce the patronage that will make this paper a financial
success. On the other hand, we shall ever strive to so conduct the publication that every
dollar paid in by our patrons will return to them in the channels of increased trade that
will tell in unmistakable tones in the years to come. Trusting that all who are interested
in the upbuilding and progression of Fairwater will co-operate with us in producing the
very best local paper possible, and that we may ever merit your hearty approval by fair
and honest methods in furthering interests, we remain
E. L. Howe,
The paper used a 7-column format. Beginning with the second issue, the
outer two columns along each edge of the front page were used for advertisements.
Beginning with the third issue, when the paper assumed its regular format, the top of
column three identified the paper, its editor, subscription rates, and the location of the
newspaper office in the "Tinkham Block," as illustrated to the right. The first
two of the middle columns were devoted to local news and social "observations,"
while the third predominantly offered smaller advertisements, including railroad
announcements from "The NorthWestern Line."
The Register mixed local and area news items interchangeably with social news,
announcements, state and national news, and a variety of filler. Little investigative
reporting appeared in the paper, suggesting that the editor had other interests beyond his
Fairwater publication (he was, in fact, also the editor of the Ripon paper). Howe mixed
his social and political commentary freely with other items, often ending a news item with
a brief editorial statement. Social news from the area's communities
appeared under banners that included "Eldorado", "Green Lake",
"Our Observations" (Fairwater), "Ripon Items",
"Rosendale," and "West Rosendale."
A microfilm collection of The Fairwater Register is available in the Wisconsin
State Historical Society library in Madison (Call No. P83-7525).