German Americans of Cleveland

Cleveland Press Articles

German paper here marks 125th

By Eleanor Prech
Cleveland Press, December 1, 1976

Waechter und Anzeiger, Cleveland's oldest foreign language newspaper, has issued a 78-page album to mark its 125th anniversary this Bicentennial year.

One of the oldest German language publications in the country, the Waechter is a weekly published and edited by Stefan Deubel at 4164 Lorain Ave.

The anniversary album carries photographs of the first published plant at St. Clair Ave. and E.38th St., the mechanical, business and editorial departments, and early officials of the newspaper.

A news section carries a complete history of the paper which started as a bi-weekly in 1852 under the name of Waechter am Erie, translated Sentinel on Lake Erie.

Its founders were Jacob Mueller, later lieutenant governor of Ohio, and Louis Ritter. The first editor, August Thieme, kept his post for 27 years.

After his death in 1879, the Waechter am Erie Publishing Co. was founded. At the time, three other German language papers, the Cleveland Anzeiger, the Germania, and the Deutsche Presse were published here.

"The newspaper became the Waechter und Anzeiger (Sentinel and Advertiser) in 1893 with the merger of the Waechter am Erie and the Cleveland Anzeiger," said Deubel.

"Its highest point of circulation was in the 1900's when 78,000 copies were published. At one time the editorial staff was nearly as large as those of the English language publications."

Deubel took over publication of the newspaper in 1954 when it became a weekly.

"Our newspaper is the second oldest in Cleveland," said Deubel. "Only the Plain Dealer is its senior in the city.

"Cleveland's foreign language newspapers have given our cosmopolitan community a valuable link with the culture and language of their homelands. We are proud that the Waechter has reached this venerable age in keeping up this link."

The 125th anniversary album carries German Heritage in Cleveland of the Germans in Cleveland. Leaders of various organizations and lodges are pictured. Many social events of the various groups are shown.

Another section includes letters of congratulations on the role played by the newspaper in the history of German people of Cleveland. Among writers are President Ford, Mayor Perk, Gov. Rhodes and Editor Tom Boardman of The Press.

The anniversary date was marked this week with dinner at Old Austria in Rocky River.

Deubel also publishes the Saxon News Volksblatt, the New Jersey Freie Zeitung, the Platt-deutche Post and the Staten Island Post, all weeklies. He is owner of Foreign Language Newspaper Service, a 68-year-old advertising agency primarily for the ethnic printed news media.