Timeline: A look at history of Star Tribune

  • Updated: June 30, 2014 - 10:23 AM

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May 25, 1867
The Minneapolis Tribune prints its first issue, under publisher Col. William S. King. Early stockholders include Dorilus Morrison, a businessman and Minneapolis’ first mayor, and W.D. Washburn, a flour-mill industrialist and lawyer.

1891
After financial difficulties and several ownership changes, the paper is purchased for $450,000. One of the two buyers is William J. Murphy, who published a paper in Grand Forks, N.D.

Aug. 19, 1920
The Minneapolis Star publishes its first issue.

June 1935
The Cowles family, publishers of the Des Moines Register, buys the Minneapolis Star, an evening paper that’s No. 3 in circulation behind the Journal and Tribune.

Aug. 1, 1939
The Cowles family buys the Minneapolis Journal, another evening paper.

May 1, 1941
The Cowles’ Star and Journal Company merges with Minneapolis Tribune Company, still owned by the Murphy family. The Cowles family now owns the Minneapolis Morning Tribune, the evening Star-Journal and the evening Minneapolis Times (which ceased publication in 1948).

Nov. 13, 1946
The Tribune and Star increase price from 3 cents to 5 cents. A front-page item in the Tribune blames material and production costs.

Feb. 1947
Evening paper is renamed Minneapolis Star.

May 1948
Nat Finney, in the Minneapolis Tribune Washington bureau, wins a Pulitzer Prize for outstanding national affairs reporting for his stories about the Truman administration’s efforts to impose secrecy on the affairs of federal civilian agencies in peacetime.

May 18, 1948
Sid Hartman’s first byline in the Minneapolis Tribune. (His first column for the Minneapolis Daily Times was Sept. 11, 1945.)

1956
The Star becomes the first major newspaper to regularly publish full-color news photos.

1959

Minneapolis Star photographer Bill Seaman wins a Pulitzer Prize for photography of the aftermath of a crash in which a 9-year-old boy died.

April 1982

Citing declining circulation, the Minneapolis Star ceases publication. The staffs of the Star and Tribune combine to produce a daily morning paper, the Star and Tribune. An afternoon edition continued for several months but was discontinued.

Aug. 31, 1987
Name becomes Star Tribune Newspaper of the Twin Cities, and it prints its first St. Paul edition.

April 12, 1990
Star Tribune reporters Lou Kilzer and Chris Ison win the Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting for “Fire in St. Paul,” which exposed a thriving industry that profited from arson and suspicious fires with the assistance of firefighters.

June 1995
Launch of subscriber-based Star Tribune Online service on the Interchange network, plus initial creation of an Internet site.

June 18, 1996
StarTribune.com launches.

March 19, 1998

Shareholders approve $1.4 billion sale of Cowles Media Co., parent company of the Star Tribune, to McClatchy Newspapers of Sacramento, Calif. The price is believed to be the biggest ever paid for a company whose primary asset is a newspaper.

Dec. 26, 2006
McClatchy Co. announces the surprise $530 million sale of the Star Tribune, its largest newspaper, to Avista Capital Partners, a New York-based private investment group.

Jan. 15, 2009
The Star Tribune, saddled with high debt and declining advertising, files a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition.

Sept. 28, 2009

The Star Tribune emerges from bankruptcy. The reorganization plan provides for a small group of debt investors, including Wayzata Investment Partners, to take over 95.5 percent of the company.

Jan. 7, 2010
Former Time Inc. executive and Fridley native Michael Klingensmith is named Star Tribune publisher.

July 2012
Wayzata Investments acquires a controlling interest in the Star Tribune by buying the portion held by Credit Suisse for $32 per share. The transaction valued the Star Tribune’s equity at $49 million and put the “enterprise value” at $125 million.

April 15, 2013
The Star Tribune wins two Pulitzer Prizes. Brad Schrade, Jeremy Olson and Glenn Howatt win the local reporting award for a series about home day care deaths of children. Steve Sack, with the Star Tribune since 1981, wins for his editorial cartoons.

April 3, 2014
The Star Tribune Media Co. announces that it will move its newsroom and headquarters to the Capella Tower complex in downtown Minneapolis in 2015.

June 30, 2014
Mankato businessman Glen Taylor purchases the Star Tribune.

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