Utah History Encyclopedia


By Sherilyn Cox Bennion
Ogden's Standard-Examiner newspaper celebrated its centennial in 1988, tracing its history back to the founding of the Ogden Standard on 1 January 1888. An even earlier forerunner was the Ogden Daily Herald, begun in 1881. Frank J. Cannon, unable to salvage the struggling Herald, bought its buildings, presses, subscription lists, and advertising contracts to start the Standard. Cannon told Herald readers on 31 December 1887 that he would provide a successor: "To the public now, with its dying breath, the Morning Herald commends its only heir, the Standard."

Cannon's previous journalistic experience had included working for newspapers in San Francisco and Salt Lake City. He had political, as well as journalistic, aspirations, and in 1892 he won election to Congress. By that time, William Glasmann had become business manager of the paper, after moving to Ogden upon the failure of plans to build a new town on the south shore of the Great Salt Lake. He bought the paper in 1894. His descendants still owned and edited the Standard-Examiner until 1993.

Like Cannon and other editors of the time, Glasmann used both news and editorial columns to express opinions and promote favorite causes. He also entered politics, serving three terms as mayor of Ogden and also as speaker of the Utah House of Representatives. He died while working for the Republican nomination to Congress in 1916. Evelyn Glasmann took over a large share of the paper's management after her husband's death. Their twenty-three-year-old son, Abraham Lincoln Glasmann, became editor.

Meanwhile, Frank Francis, a Standard associate editor who also was to become an Ogden mayor, had started the Morning Examiner in January 1904. Four months later, he sold it to William Glasmann, who published both papers until 1911. At that time, J.U. Eldredge, backed by Ogden businessmen, bought the Examiner and made it into a political opponent of the Standard. In 1920 the papers merged into the Standard-Examiner. Joint control lasted until 1946, when the Glasmanns bought out the Eldredge family.

The Standard-Examiner continued the tradition of community involvement begun by its predecessors. Some examples include an 1897 campaign to raise $300,000 for a plant to process locally grown sugar beets, a fight to maintain state support for Weber College when that support was threatened in 1954, and the purchase of Ogden's National Guard Armory as a new home for the paper in 1961 as a demonstration of commitment to a vital downtown area.

With a daily circulation of 55,500 (56,500 on Sundays) in 1993, the Standard-Examiner is Utah's third largest newspaper, gaining on the second-place Deseret News. It reaches nearly 85 percent of the homes in Weber County.

In 1993 the Ogden Publishing Corporation, which publishes the Standard-Examiner and its two weekly zoned editions, became a subsidiary of Sandusky Newspapers, an Ohio company with several other newspaper and broadcast properties. The Hatch family, descendants of William Glasmann, also sold its majority interests in its Salt Lake City radio and television stations in 1993.