Douglas Fisher Attaway

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Douglas Fisher
"Doug" Attaway

(Publisher of The Shreveport Journal, 1957-1976)

Born September 10, 1910
Shreveport, Louisiana, US
Died February 21, 1994 (aged 83)
Shreveport, Louisiana
Spouse Marion Sailor Attaway (married 1936-1994, his death)

Douglas Wesley Attaway
Susan Elizabeth Attaway
Diane Kathryn Attaway Bolen
Douglas Attaway
Bessie Fisher Attaway

Religion Southern Baptist

Alma mater:
Clifton Ellis Byrd High School
University of Missouri (Columbia)

Douglas Fisher Attaway (September 10, 1910 – February 21, 1994), was the president and publisher from 1957 to 1976 of the since defunct Shreveport Journal, a daily newspaper in northwestern Louisiana. He was chairman of the board of KSLA-TV, the Shreveport CBS affiliate from 1966 until the channel was sold in 1979 to Viacom. He served as chairman of the board of Newspaper Production Company and the Attaway Newspaper Group, Inc.

Journalism career

Born in Shreveport to The Journal publisher Douglas Attaway, and the former Bessie Fisher (1884–1967), Attaway graduated from Clifton Ellis Byrd High School in Shreveport and held degrees in journalism and business from the University of Missouri at Columbia, Missouri. In 1934, he joined The Journal staff as an advertising proof runner. He became an ad salesman, assistant bookkeeper, reporter, and then in December 1941 the managing editor,[1] a position which he held until his father's death in 1957. Then Attaway followed his father as the president and publisher of The Journal and remained at the helm until the paper was sold in 1976 to the industrial and philanthropist Charles Thomas Beaird. (1922-2006).[2]

From 1953 to 1971, the conservative journalist George Washington Shannon (1914-1998) was the editor of The Journal.[3]

In 1972, Attaway wrote an article on a total eclipse, the phenomenon in which the moon totally blocks out the rays of the sun, which occurred on July 10 of that year. Attaway and his long-term photo editor, Jack Barham, traveled to New York City to observe the two-minute eclipse and located their most desirable point of view beyond the Verrazano Bridge in the Atlantic Ocean.[4]

In 1974, two years before he sold The Journal, Attaway recruited Stanley Ray Tiner from The Times as the editor of The Journal. In time, Tiner, a liberal Democrat, and Charles Beaird, a Moderate Republican, moved the editorial position of The Journal far to the political left, whereas it had been conservative and even earlier segregationist under Attaway's tutelage.

Civic organizations

Attaway was a member of the Shreveport Chamber of Commerce and the original board of the Red River Navigation Association, a private trade association which successfully lobbied the United States Congress to provide funds to make the Red River navigable from Shreveport to Alexandria, a long-term project pushed by the Louisiana congressional delegation, particularly, U.S. Representative Joe Waggonner of Louisiana's 4th congressional district.[1]

Attaway was affiliated with Kappa Alpha Order fraternity, Rotary International, Downtown Shreveport Unlimited, the Coastal Gun Club, American Bowling Congress, the Boy Scouts of America, the Shreveport Club, the Petroleum Club of Shreveport, American Newspaper Publishers Association, Texas Daily Newspaper Association, and Southern Newspaper Publishers Association. He was the 1968 Cotillion King of the annual Holiday In Dixie celebration. In 1965, he was named "Shreveport's Best Salesman".[1]

Death and legacy

Attaway died at his home in the historic Fairfield neighborhood of Shreveport. He was survived by his wife of fifty-seven years, the former Marion Sailor (1918–1999); their son, Douglas Wesley Attaway and second spouse, the former Sonya Diana Wisdom (1933-2022), who taught at three public schools and four universities,[5] and daughters Susan Elizabeth Attaway and Diane Kathryn Attaway Bolen.

The Attaways are remembered through the Douglas and Marion Attaway Professorships in Civic Culture at United Methodist-affiliated Centenary College of Louisiana, of which he was a trustee.[1] Rose Van Thyn (1921-2010) of Shreveport, a survivor of the Holocaust, held one of the fellowships. Attaway himself was a Southern Baptist.

There is also the Douglas F. and Marion S. Attaway Charitable Income Trust Fund and Doug Attaway Boulevard near Louisiana Highway 1 in Shreveport.[1]

The Attaways are interred at the large Forest Park East Cemetery in Shreveport.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 John Andrew Prime, "Former Journal publisher dies at age 83", The Shreveport Times, February 22, 1994.
  2. Shreveport Journal Collection (1921-1990). Retrieved on June 13, 2012.
  3. John Andrew Prime (June 10, 2010). George Washington Shannon. Retrieved on June 22, 2015.
  4. Douglas Attaway and Jack Barham, "Eclipse Splendor: Two Minutes of History," July 28, 1972. from The Shreveport Journal. Retrieved on June 13, 2012.
  5. Sonya Attaway obituary. Retrieved on January 30, 2022.