Editor's note: This special project about a piece of Star Tribune history was originally produced in 1996. With our 150th anniversary celebration this year, we're offering another look into this time capsule from our past.
In 1949, the Star and Tribune produced a comic book to commemorate the opening of the newspapers' new building on Portland Avenue in Minneapolis.
This 74-panel, 12-page comic book follows two little boys named Tom and Steve on a tour through the Star and Tribune building, and through the process of producing a newspaper in that long-ago era. It was distributed with the July 3, 1949, Minneapolis Sunday Tribune, and copies were handed out as a premium to people who toured the building during an open house. Copies also were given away at the State Fair later that year.
"Newspaperland" harkens back to a more innocent age, when children could ride in company cars with strangers -- without worrying about insurance coverage -- and the role of women in newspapers was confined to interviewing Miss America or writing about travel.
Newspaper technology has changed, too. Those familiar with the workings of a modern newspaper such as the Star Tribune will be amused to see how quaint so much of the old technology seems in the digital age.
Longtime Twin Cities residents will see many familiar old names here, including Cedric Adams, Barbara Flanagan, Nat Finney, Charlie Johnson and John Cowles Sr.
Over time, "A Trip Through Newspaperland" faded from memory and was lost. Even the company archives held no record of its existence.
The comic book came to light again in 1996, when a copy was discovered in a garage. Yellowing and falling apart, its 74 panels have been lovingly scanned and translated into the online medium.
"A Trip Through Newspaperland" is a delightful snapshot of Twin Cities history, giving modern readers a glimpse of what life was like back then. We hope you enjoy this little trip into the Star Tribune's past.