Copyright notice

This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

Printer-friendly page

Asheville Citizen-Times

by John L. Bell, 2006

Randolph A. ShotwellThe Asheville Citizen-Times was founded as the Asheville Citizen in 1870 by Randolph Abbott Shotwell, who conceived the newspaper as a voice for Conservative-Democratic politics. After the Western North Carolina Railroad reached Asheville in 1880, the circulation and influence of the Citizen grew with the town. It became a daily in 1885. Over the next several decades the newspaper, as the only morning daily west of Charlotte and Winston-Salem, was a consistent advocate of economic progress in the Mountain region.

Over the years, the Citizen experienced a number of changes, becoming one of the first newspapers to have a linotype machine in the state. It changed ownership many times until 1930, when then-owner Charles A. Webb formed the Asheville Citizen-Times Company with Don S. Elias, publisher of the afternoon Asheville Times. One Sunday edition of both papers was consolidated under the name Citizen-Times, although the editorial staffs remained separate and followed independent policies. The Citizen continued to support regional development, especially concerning the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkway. In 1954 the Peace family of South Carolina acquired the company and in 1969 consolidated it with the Greenville News-Piedmont Company and Southeast Broadcasting Corporation to form Multimedia, Inc. In 1991 the Citizen and the Times merged into one newspaper, the Asheville Citizen-Times, and four years later Multimedia, Inc., was purchased by the giant communications corporation, the Gannett Company.

Asheville Citizen-Times building, circa 1951. Image from the North Carolina Digital Collections.Reference:

Foster A. Sendley, History of Buncombe County, North Carolina (2 vols., 1930).

The Asheville Citizen-Times official webpage:  (accessed September 6, 2012).

Sandford, Jason. "Asheville Citizen-Times stops the presses." Mountain Xpress. January 4, 2009.  (accessed September 6, 2012).

Image Credits:

"Shotwell, Randolph A." N 53 15 1489 From North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, NC, USA.

"Attractive glass-brick and concrete home of The Asheville Ctizen, The Asheville Times, the Sunday Citizen-Times, The Engraving Plant and Radio Station WWNC. One of the most modern newspaper plants in the Southeast." The E.S.C. Quarterly 9. No. 1-2. Winter-Spring 1951. p 23.

Origin - location: