The News Star is the principal newspaper of Monroe and northeastern Louisiana. Its circulation area ranges over some dozen parishes from Ruston in Lincoln Parish, on the west, to Tallulah in Madison Parish on the east, to the Arkansas state line on the north, and to Ferriday in Concordia Parish on the south. The newspaper is a Gannett Company publication.
The News Star began in 1890 as the Monroe Evening News. John Travis Nixon, a native of Illinois, and a partner, Julius Cheney, became the publishers in 1893, but Nixon soon left for Crowley in Acadia Parish, where he began what is now the Crowley Post Signal.
In 1909, coincidentally the year that John Travis Nixon died at the age of forty-one, The Evening News merged with The Daily Star to form the afternoon newspaper, The Monroe News-Star. In 1908, Robert Ewing, I, while still the publisher of the since defunct New Orleans Daily States, purchased The Shreveport Times. In 1929, Ewing purchased the since defunct Monroe Morning World. In 1930, he acquired The News-Star, since switched from an afternoon to a morning publication. Ewing was accordingly among the two or three most influential persons in the Louisiana journalism community.
The two Monroe newspapers remained in the Ewing family until the Gannett acquisition on June 16, 1977. The Morning World and The News-Star consolidated on August 4, 1980, to become The News-Star-World. The name was later changed and the first edition of The News Star, since a morning paper, was printed on May 22, 1988.
John Dunbrack Ewing (1892–1952), one of the five sons of Robert Ewing, was editor and publisher of The Shreveport Times and the Monroe News-Star-World from 1931 until his death. John Ewing moved to Shreveport in 1915 to become the associate publisher of The Shreveport Times. When his father died, Ewing became the publisher of the Shreveport Times and both Monroe papers. All three newspapers were known for their conservative editorials.
Robert Ewing, III, a nephew of John Ewing, was a nature photographer and served as a News Star board member. Another Ewing relative, Edmund Graves Brown was a News Star executive who served as the assistant general manager until Gannett, an Arlington, Virginia, firm, purchased the combined News-Star-World. In 1980, “World” was dropped from the name, which became The News Star, without a hyphen.
The News Star often endorses conservative candidates. In 2004, it supported successful Republicans Rodney Alexander for the United States House of Representatives and David Vitter for the United States Senate. In 2007, the paper endorsed Royal Alexander, a former Rodney Alexander staff member (no relation), who unsuccessfully carried the GOP banner for Louisiana attorney general in the 2007 elections. Royal Alexander of Shreveport was handily defeated by Buddy Caldwell of Tallulah, after incumbent Charles Carmen Foti, Jr., of New Orleans was eliminated in the first round of balloting.
Notable staff members
- Charles E. Bever, former managing editor and later Gannett executive, now inRichmond, Virginia
- Craig Durrett (1955-2015), News Star city editor, 1983-1987; long career with The Shreveport Times
- Sam Hanna, Sr. (1933–2006), former political editor; later publisher of The Ouachita Citizen in West Monroe, Franklin Sun in Winnsboro]], and The Concordia Sentinel in Ferriday,
- Bert Hatten, former managing editor of The Morning World; later publisher of 'The Ouachita Citizen; mayor of West Monroe from 1966 to 1978
- Greg Hilburn, News Star political reporter; son of Wiley Hilburn
- Wiley Hilburn (1938-2014), former staffer and retired long-term head of the Journalism Department at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston
- Robert Townley "Bob" Mann, Jr., reporter in early 1980s; holds the Douglas Manship Chair of Journalism at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, author of political history
- Kathy Spurlock, general manager and executive editor who began career at The News Star as cub reporter
- Dale Thorn (1943-2014), journalist at The Monroe Morning World in late 1960s, former LSU professor, and press secretary to Governor Edwin Edwards
- Dictionary of Louisiana Biography - N - Louisiana Historical Association (lahistory.org), accessed April 17, 2021.
- Dictionary of Louisiana Biography - E - Louisiana Historical Association (lahistory.org), accessed April 17, 2021.
- Robert Ewing, III, obituary, The News Star, April 1, 2007.
- Edmund Graves Brown obituary, The News Star, May 13, 2008.
- "David Vitter for U.S. Senate," www.vitter2004.com; no longer on-line.
- Dhimmi This!: Monroe News Star Endorses Royal Alexander (October 16, 2007). Retrieved on April 20, 2021.
- John Andrew Prime (May 11, 2015). Craig Durrett, veteran journalist, dies. The Shreveport Times. Retrieved on May 15, 2015.
- Sam Hanna, Jr. (November 20, 2013). One fateful day in Dallas. The Ouachita Citizen. Retrieved on May 22, 2014.
- About Bob Mann. bobmannblog.com. Retrieved on October 18, 2013; no longer on-line.
- "Former News Star executive Edmund Brown dies," The Shreveport Times, May 13, 2008.
- Obituary - Dr. Jesse Dale Thorn. The Ouachita Citizen (May 14, 2014). Retrieved on May 17, 2014.