Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Old newspaper photos here?

I was talking with LaShawn Barber Friday evening about some of the blatantly partisan news coverage at the Tennessean over the years. She noted that bloggers would have had a field day with some of it. Which led to the thought that it might be fun to "blog" or "fisk" some of the great media bonehead efforts at partisanship from the past. My first thought was the day of "Alger Hiss Innocent" headlines which made the press look so foolish.

Anyway, I thought that I would really like to put up the photos of the blatant hit job the Tennessean did on Republican Beth Halteman back in 1992. Short version -- they had a big group photo from 1988 of the election night party the moment the TV station projected her the winner of her legislative race (her first win). The crowd has erupted with a mighty cheer. In 1992, the paper ran a closely cropped headshot of her on the cover of the paper (above the fold) a few days before election day. In the photo, she has her mouth wide open as if she were screaming at the top of her lungs. The story next to her had a headline about abortion and was written by a reporter who had been seen earlier fund-raising for her opponent. The Tennessean had taken the large group photo and enlarged, cropped and lightened it into what was run on the front page.

It was a blatant effort to try to make her look like a screaming bitch on the topic of abortion. With an election for governor and US Senate only days away, races for legislative seats don't get highlighted as the dominant story of the day on the front page. When people protested, the paper's reader advocate wrote a story "explaining" what happened which was a total coverup.

Does anyone have some ideas on how to get the photos on this blog? I know someone who might have kept old copies of the papers in a file somewhere, but if not, I doubt the Tennessean would be real cooperative.

Anyone have any experience trying to get something from a newspaper's archives which would be embarassing to the paper?

And of course, given my total lack of tech ability, how would I get them on the site?


Blogger Maggie said...


If you email to them at


they may have an answer or tell you where to go (forgive the pun).

10:52 AM, May 10, 2005  
Blogger Stan said...


12:32 PM, May 10, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you are still interested in doing blog defense work for Speaker Beth Halteman Harwell, the first female Speaker of either legislative House in Tennessee, you can do what the pros do and visit the extensive newspaper archive collections at the State Library and Archives next to the Supreme Court Building at 7th and Charlotte at the base of the Capitol cattycorner to the War Memorial Building-Legislative Plaza. The quality of microfiched and scanned images may be an aid. The Tennessean, under new management, may reach out and provide you now with better images.

10:33 PM, November 19, 2010  

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