Flashback Frank - The Murfreesboro Press Newspaper

Apr 29, 2021 at 08:00 am by Dalton Barrett

Did you know there was a locally published newspaper right here in Murfreesboro titled ‘The Murfreesboro Press’? It was published by Don Keith along with Editor Mike ‘Hammerhead’ West from June 1, 1978 till July 14, 1983.



The Murfreesboro Press was mostly a good news publication featuring soft news, critical journalism and, well, just fun news.


The front page of the first edition published June 1, 1978, featured ‘the hot weather retreat of Walter Hill dam’, ‘Sam Ingram selected as the next president of MTSU’, ‘Golfers disagree on the need for the proposed, yet to be built Old Fort Golf Course’. There was even a photo of seventh graders playing tug-of-war at Central Middle School’s annual field day right there on the front page.


Advertisements from Pigg & Parsons Fine Clothes for Men, Bell Jewelers, Goldstein’s Department Store, even a Jake Butcher for Governor ad is seen.


Sports articles related to Oakland High School baseball coaching legend Jack Jolly, the Kiwanis Junior Dolly League team The Barbies remained unbeaten, Referee Rick Wise officiating an arm wrestling contest at Central Middle School’s annual field day. There was an optimistic column about the upcoming 1978 Blue Raider football season. And, for the record, Head Coach Ben Hurt’s fourth and final season with MTSU resulted in one win, nine losses and one tie…).


About the only hard news found in this first edition was a story concerning a recent axe murder.


A quick turn of the page shows more soft, or good news. There is a photo of Judge Ben hall McFarlin, Sr. smiling as he presents ‘Little Miss Princess of Rutherford County’ to a young lady wearing her tiara.


Still more intriguing are all the ads of businesses and memories past. A 2,000 Square foot home with a two-car garage on a ¾ acre lot in the trendy neighborhood of Riverview listed for only $64,900.


1978 photos of Rutherford County legends such as Larry Sims, Dr. James Garner, and look – there’s Danny Jones!


By 1982, The Murfreesboro Press graduated from a weekly paper, delivered each Thursday, to a daily paper, six days a week, and being rebranded at The Morning Press.


It wasn’t long before Mid-South Publishers, then owners of the Daily News Journal, purchased the Murfreesboro/Morning Press, closing the daily paper, with the last edition appearing July 14, 1983


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