Georgia Historic Newspapers Update Fall 2022

This year, the Digital Library of Georgia released several new grant-funded newspaper titles to the Georgia Historic Newspapers website. Included below is a list of the newly available titles.

Titles digitized in partnership with the Atlanta History Center and Kennesaw State University

Southern Voice (Atlanta), 1988-1994

Titles funded by the Farris Cadle

Bethesda News (Savannah), 1947-1949

Jewish Alliance (Savannah), 1945-1949

Labor Herald (Savannah), 1909

Reason (Savannah), 1908

Savannah Times, 1881

Savannah Weekly News, 1912

Southern Agriculturist (Savannah), 1872

Weekly News (Savannah), 1881

Titles funded by the Forsyth County Government with an ARPA Digital Inclusion grant

The Forsyth County News (Cumming), 2004-2012

Titles made available as part of the Georgia Newspaper Project’s Born Digital Project

Advance (Vidalia), 2021

Banks County News (Homer), 2008-2020

Barrow Journal (Winder), 2008-2015

Barrow News-Journal (Winder), 2016-2021

Braselton News, 2007-2020

Commerce News, 2007-2016

Herald-Gazette (Barnesville), 2021-2022

Jackson Herald (Jefferson), 2008-2021

Lee County Ledger, (Leesburg) 2001-2022

Madison County Journal (Hull), 2009-2021

Millen News, 2009-2021

Pickens County Progress (Jasper), 2003-2021

Pike County Journal and Reporter (Zebulon), 2021

True Citizen (Waynesboro), 2009-2022

Titles funded by the Georgia Public Library Service with funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services

Advertiser (Cleveland), 1881

Brunswick News, 1924-1932

Camilla Enterprise, 1904-1926

Cleveland Advertiser, 1880-1881

Cleveland Courier, 1896-1967

Covington News, 1909-1936

Covington Star, 1885-1902

Courier-Sentinel (Ellijay) 1898-1899

Ellijay Courier, 1876-1892

Ellijay Courier, 1906-1915

Ellijay Times, 1906-1915

Enterprise (Covington), 1905-1909

Fort Valley Leader,  1908

Georgia Enterprise (Covington), 1889-1905

Pelham Journal, 1908-1924

Times-Courier (Ellijay) 1916-1924

Titles funded by the Georgia Public Library Service with funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services in partnership with the Roddenbery Memorial Library

Cairo Messenger, 1904-1950

Titles funded by the Georgia Public Library Service with funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services in partnership with Peach Public Libraries

Leader-Tribune (Fort Valley), 1925-2012

Leader-Tribune and Peachland Journal, 1920-1924

Fort Valley Leader, 1908

Titles digitized in partnership with Julia Grimes and the Library of Virginia

Hexagon (Elberton), 1974-1975

Titles digitized in partnership with the Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Countryman (Turnwold), 1862-1865

Titles funded by Lucy Hilton Maddox Memorial Library Trust

Early County News, 1942-1953

Titles funded by the National Digital Newspaper Program with a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities

Atlanta Age, 1900

Augusta Union, 1900

Colored American (Augusta), 1865-1866

Columbus Chronicle, 1900

Gazette and Land Bulletin (Waycross), 1900

Macon Sentinel, 1900

Savannah Weekly Echo, 1883-1884

Voice of Missions (Atlanta), 1900

Weekly Defiance (Atlanta), 1882-1883

Titles donated by Edward Smith

Star Daily News (Milledgeville), 1917

Titles funded by Spalding County SPLOST via the Flint River Regional Library System

Griffin Daily News, 1888-1889

Griffin Daily News and Sun, 1889-1924

Griffin Daily News, 1924-1930, 1944-1949. 1966-1977

Griffin Weekly News and Sun, 1896-1918

Titles funded by the R.J. Taylor, Jr. Foundation

Adel News, 1900-1904

American Union (West Bowersville), 1885-1896

Ashburn Advance, 1897-1900

Advocate-Democrat (Crawfordville), 1893-1906

Banner-Messenger (Buchanan), 1891-1900

Baptist Reporter (Guyton), 1888

Blackshear News, 1878-1882

Blackshear Times, 1889-1901

Blairsville Free Press, 1892

Blue Ridge Post,  1893, 1900, 1913

Bogart News, 1897

Bulloch County Banner (Statesboro), 1893

Bulloch Herald (Statesboro), 1899-1901

Bulloch Times (Statesboro), 1893-1898

Calhoun County Courier (Leary), 1882-1902

Carnesville Advance, 1899-1917

Carnesville Tribune, 1890-1894

Clay County Reformer (Fort Gaines), 1894

Columbia Sentinel (Harlem), 1885-1923

Conyers Examiner, 1878-1883

Conyers Weekly, 1895-1901

Conyers Weekly-Banner, 1901-1902

Correspondent (Roberta), 1892-1903

Crawfordville Advocate, 1895-1896

Crawford County Correspondent (Roberta), 1892

Crawford County Herald (Knoxville), 1890-1892

Crawfordville Democrat, 1881-1893

Daily Sun (Columbus), 1865-1873

Democrat (Crawfordville), 1877-1881

Demorest Times, 1891-1894

Dodge County Journal (Eastman), 1887

Dispatch (Ocilla), 1899

DuPont Okefenokean, 1880

Eastman Times, 1879-1887

Echols Echo, 1916

Enterprise-Record (Gibson), 1892

Excelsior News, 1879

Fannin County Gazette (Mineral Bluff), 1891

Fitzgerald Leader, 1897-1912

Fort Valley Mirror, 1880-1881

Franklin County Register (Carnesville), 1878-1888

Fort Gaines Sentinel, 1897-1898

Georgia Farmer (Statesboro), 1892

Hale’s Weekly (Conyers), 1892-1895

Hamilton Journal, 1881-1885

Hamilton Journal, 1887

Hamilton Journal, Published Semi-Weekly, 1885-1887

Hancock Weekly Journal (Sparta), 1869-1870

Hamilton Journal, 1906-1920

Headlight (Gray), 1889

High Shoals Messenger, 1897

Industrial Banner (DuPont), 1892

Irwin County News (Sycamore), 1893-1897

Jasper News, 1885

Jones County Headlight (Gray), 1888-1889

Journal (Hamilton), 1887-1889

Knoxville Journal, 1888-1889

Leader Fort Valley, 1891

Lincolnton News, 1882-1890

Lithonia New Era, 1890

Lumpkin Independent, 1883-1902

Monroe Advertiser (Forsyth), 1888-1910

Morgan Monitor, 1897-1899

Morganton News, 1891

Murray County Gazette (Spring Place), 1879

Murray News (Spring Place), 1897-1909

North Georgia Times (Spring Place), 1881-1891

Ocilla Dispatch, 1899-1901

Oconee Enterprise (Watkinsville), 1887-1916

Oglethorpe Echo (Crawford), 1878-1898

People’s Advocate (Crawfordville), 1893

Pickens County Herald (Jasper), 1888-1899

Record (Wrightsville), 1897-1900

Rockdale Banner (Conyers), 1888-1900

Savannah Daily Evening Recorder, 1878-1881

Solid South (Conyers), 1883-1892

South Georgian (Macville), 1879-1880

Southern Record, 1897-1898

Southern Times and Planter (Sparta), 1874

Sparta Times and Planter, 1874

Statesboro Eagle, 1889-1891

Statesboro Star, 1894, 1899

Stillmore Times, 1898

Times-Journal (Eastman), 1889-1899

Toccoa News, 1880-1889

Toccoa News, 1893-1896

Toccoa News and Piedmont Industrial Journal, 1889-1893

Toccoa Record, 1901-1902

Toccoa Times, 1894-1896

Toccoa Times-News, 1896-1897

Tribune (Buchanan), 1898-1901

Watkinsville Advance, 1880-1881

Wayne County News (Jesup), 1897-1910

Weekly Banner (Conyers), 1900-1901

Wiregrass Cracker, 1883

Wrightsville Recorder, 1880-1902

Young Harris News, 1900

Titles digitized in partnership with the Tifton-Tift County Public Library

Tifton Gazette, 1917-1918

–Donnie Summerlin and Mandy Mastrovita


The Rylander Theatre Collection Brings Viewers to Cinephile Jimmy Carter’s Childhood Landmark

A photo of the front of the Rylander Theatre when it was under the ownership of the Martin Theatre Company. T he marquee reads Monday Tuesday Bette Davis, Edward G. Robinson in Kid Galahad.

In 2020, the Digital Library of Georgia partnered with the Rylander Theatre, providing $7500 worth of services as part of its collaborative digitization grant program. Together, they built and described Rylander Theatre Special Collections, a digital collection covering the theater’s “first life” spanning 1921-1957. The collection includes rare photographs of the building and the small businesses in its Americus business neighborhood, as well as membership cards, numerous souvenir programs, theater posters, coupon books, fliers, and handbills.

Jacob A. Ross, a park ranger at the Jimmy Carter National Historical Park in Plains, Georgia, notes: 

“I consider the Rylander Theatre’s history to be part of President Carter’s history, as the young Carter would often attend shows at the theatre during the same era these items were created.”

United States presidents have often intermingled with motion picture culture throughout history. Former presidential appearances in Hollywood films include Donald Trump’s cameo in Home Alone 2 (1992), Bill Clinton in First Kid (1996), or the actor-turned-politician Ronald Reagan’s performances in Alice in Movieland (1940) and It’s a Great Feeling (1949). However, former president Jimmy Carter holds the crown for the most movies watched at the White House Family Theater, with 480 films seen during his 4-year term

Carter, now 97, served as the United States’ president from 1977 to 1981. Before being elected president, Carter served in the U.S. Navy under Admiral Hyman Rickover, who led the U.S. nuclear submarine program; two terms in the Georgia Senate (1963-1967, pp. 382-383 of PDF); and one term as Georgia’s governor (1971-1975, pp. 27-28 of PDF). Defeated by Ronald Reagan in the 1980 presidential election, in 1982, Carter and former first lady Rosalynn Carter established the Carter Center, a non-partisan public policy organization.

Away from the high-stakes environment of Carter’s numerous careers, his secret love for movies was born in Americus, Georgia’s Rylander Theatre. After leaving his childhood town of Plains, Carter attended Georgia Southwestern College (later renamed Georgia Southwestern State University) in Americus, where he found the historic theater and soon became its most celebrated patron.

During his college years, Carter would often attend the Rylander Theatre’s movie screenings since it was one of the first establishments to show “talkies,” or movies with sound, that had transitioned from silent film between 1926-1930. These films, shown during the theater’s “first life” (1921-1951), were part of a program that included musicals, vaudeville shows, and silent films. Many advertisements for these events are available in historical issues of the Americus Times-Recorder in the Digital Library of Georgia’s Georgia Historic Newspapers portal and digitized through the National Digital Newspaper Program.

Carter’s passion for cinema grew during his term in the Oval Office. As a result, the genre or meaning behind a specific movie he watched would often coincide with key events during his presidency. 

Some movies that President Carter watched during his term in office (with links to his diary entries on those days):

Thanks to Carter’s presidential daily diary, we can see that he and First Lady Rosalynn Carter viewed Star Wars (1977) on February 4, 1978, accompanied by Anwar and Jehan Sadat, the president and first lady of Egypt. This viewing coincided with one of the numerous visits from the Sadats throughout Carter’s presidency. Discussions from this February visit grew into the Camp David Accords in September of 1978, when Carter brokered a peace deal between Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin. Whether or not the screening of Star Wars had an impact on the peace treaty is unknown, but conspiracy theorists have had fun imagining so over the years.

Another intriguing relationship from Carter’s watchlist includes viewing The Life of Emile Zola, a movie about the Nazi invasion of France during WWII (June 7, 1978). He watched this film on the same day he delivered a graduation speech at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, emphasizing the importance of human rights in foreign policy. 

The former president also viewed Frank Capra’s The Lost Horizon (1937) on September 15, 1979, one day after his approval ratings dropped to the lowest point for any president in three decades. On the same day, he fainted during a 10K road race. The Lost Horizon, a drama about a group of plane crash survivors who land in the remote Himalayas, likely served as an escape for Carter during the troubling times of his term.

The Rylander Theatre was established by Arthur Rylander and his son, Walter, in 1921, initially as a city-civil collaborative project. The Rylander family then brought in New York architect C. K. Howell to design the magnificent edifice, said to be “a prime example of eclectic architecture restored to its former glory” (Anderson, 2003).

As the 1950s began, The Rylander Theatre had already started to see the end of the business as they knew it. A new and larger theater, namely The Martin Theatre, began pulling in the business of Rylander’s market and even started taking major movie releases, relegating Rylander to “B-grade” movie screenings. As of 1951, the Rylander Theatre was closed for business indefinitely.

Its doors would remain closed until the city of Americus, Georgia, Governor Roy Barnes, and other foundations and private donors managed to raise 4.8 million dollars in funding to restore the building. Then, reopening on President Carter’s birthday, October 1, 1999, along with an auditorium (the Jimmy Carter Auditorium) named after the former president, the “finest playhouse south of Atlanta” began anew. The meticulous renovations were rewarded with a 2000 Preservation Award from the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation. 

Since reopening, the Rylander Theatre has offered live performances, musicals, and organ concerts on its 1928 Möller Deluxe Theatre Pipe Organ (one of only three in the state), movies, community theater, as well as other events throughout the year.

Like many other small businesses, the COVID-19 pandemic impacted the theater significantly, causing financial hardships and resulting in the theater’s closing its doors for an entire 13-month period, spanning from March 2020 to April 2021. Thankfully, since then, the theater has reopened for weekly programming.

Recommended Resources

Page of President Jimmy Carter's daily diary from February 4, 1978
Page from February 4, 1978, daily diary of President Jimmy Carter where President Carter and First Lady Rosalynn Carter watched Star Wars accompanied by President Anwar Sadat and First Lady Jehan Sedat of Egypt.

An Americus Times-Recorder ad for the Rylander Theatre, February 16, 1924. The ad details a romantic, sci-fi film, Black Oxen (1923), showing at the Rylander Theatre. The slogan for the movie was “A startling revelation of the secret of youth and beauty.” Digitized through the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP).

A photo of the front of the Rylander Theatre when it was under the ownership of the Martin Theatre Company. T he marquee reads Monday Tuesday Bette Davis, Edward G. Robinson in Kid Galahad.
A photo of the front of the Rylander Theatre when it was under the ownership of the Martin Theatre Company, a chain of more than sixty-five theaters owned by R. E. Martin of Columbus, Georgia. The marquee reads, “Mon Tue Bette Davis, Edw[ard] G. Robinson in Kid Galahad [1937].”

The ad details the attractions showing at the theatre for Thanksgiving week. Digitized through the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP).

A printed program from the Rylander Theatre gala opening on January 21-22, 1921 for the play “Lightnin’ (1918)” containing cast and Rylander Theatre personnel information and local advertisements.
A program from the Rylander Theatre gala opening on January 21-22, 1921 for the play “Lightnin’ (1918)” containing cast and Rylander Theatre personnel information and local advertisements.