Paxton Media Group

Last updated
Paxton Media Group, LLC
Industry Publishing
Founded1896, Paducah, Kentucky
Headquarters201 South 4th Street, Paducah, Kentucky 42003 United States
Key people
David M. Paxton, President & CEO
ProductsNewspapers, Media
Footnotes /references
Sources: [1] [2]

Paxton Media Group of Paducah, Kentucky, is a privately held media company with holdings that include newspapers and a TV station, WPSD-TV in Paducah. David M. Paxton is president and CEO.

Paducah, Kentucky City in Kentucky, United States

Paducah is a home rule-class city in and the county seat of McCracken County, Kentucky, United States. The largest city in the Jackson Purchase region, it is located at the confluence of the Tennessee and the Ohio rivers, halfway between St. Louis, Missouri, to the northwest and Nashville, Tennessee, to the southeast. The population was 24,941 in 2017, down slightly from 25,024 during the 2010 U.S. Census. Twenty blocks of the city's downtown have been designated as a historic district and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

WPSD-TV NBC affiliate in Paducah, KY

WPSD-TV is an NBC-affiliated television station licensed to Paducah, Kentucky, United States, serving Western Kentucky's Jackson Purchase region, Southern Illinois, the Missouri Bootheel, Northwestern Tennessee, and far Northeastern Arkansas. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 32 from a transmitter in Monkey's Eyebrow, Kentucky. On cable, the station can be seen on Comcast Xfinity channel 5, Mediacom channel 6, and Charter Spectrum channel 10. There is a high definition feed provided on Xfinity digital channel 432, Mediacom digital channel 706, and Spectrum digital channel 785.


The company owns 32 daily newspapers and numerous weekly newspapers, mostly in the southern United States. Daily circulation totals 350,000. Holdings include The Paducah Sun , the High Point Enterprise in High Point, North Carolina, the Jonesboro Sun in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and the Daily Star in Hammond, Louisiana and The Daily Citizen in Searcy, Arkansas.

The Paducah Sun is a daily newspaper in Paducah, Kentucky, owned by the family-run Paxton Media Group. The paper was formerly known as the Paducah Sun-Democrat. The publisher is Jim Paxton. Matt Jones is the general manager.

<i>High Point Enterprise</i> daily newspaper in High Point, North Carolina, United States

High Point Enterprise is a daily morning newspaper that primarily serves High Point, North Carolina.

High Point, North Carolina City in North Carolina, United States

High Point is a city located in the Piedmont Triad region of the state of North Carolina. Most of the city is located in Guilford County, with portions spilling into neighboring Randolph, Davidson, and Forsyth counties. High Point is North Carolina's only city that extends into four counties. As of the 2010 census the city had a total population of 104,371, with an estimated population of 108,629 in 2014. High Point is currently the ninth-largest municipality in North Carolina, and the 259th largest city in America.


Paxton Media Group traces it roots to 1896, when a group of investors headed by William F. Paxton launched The Evening Sun by buying the assets of the failing Paducah Standard at 214 Broadway. The cost was $8,900, and the men started with $10,000 capital. The newspaper did not make a profit until 1918. In 1929, Paxton's son, Edwin J. Paxton, who had taken over as editor, bought out the rival News-Democrat. After the merger, the newspaper became The Sun-Democrat, and operations were moved to the current location at 408 Kentucky Avenue in 1934. The name changed to The Paducah Sun in 1978 at the request of Jack Paxton, editor at the time and grandson of Edwin J. Paxton. [1]

At 4:20 p.m. May 28, 1957, WPSD television, (the PSD stands for Paducah Sun-Democrat) went on the air as the company-owned television station based in Paducah. It is an NBC affiliate.

NBC American television and radio network

The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) is an American English-language commercial terrestrial television network that is a flagship property of NBCUniversal, a subsidiary of Comcast. The network is headquartered at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City, with additional major offices near Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia. The network is one of the Big Three television networks. NBC is sometimes referred to as the "Peacock Network", in reference to its stylized peacock logo, introduced in 1956 to promote the company's innovations in early color broadcasting. It became the network's official emblem in 1979.

The company operated only The Paducah Sun and WPSD-TV until 1989, when it began acquiring other newspapers.

In 1998, the company purchased Nixon Newspapers Inc which included the Wabash Plain Dealer, located in Wabash, Indiana.

Wabash, Indiana City in Indiana, United States

Wabash is a city in Noble Township, Wabash County, in the U.S. state of Indiana. The population was 10,666 at the 2010 census. The city is the county seat of Wabash County.

In 2007, Paxton Media Group purchased three Indiana newspapers: the Marion Chronicle-Tribune (in July) from the Gannett Foundation; the Huntington Herald-Press (in May) from the Quayle family; and the LaPorte County Herald-Argus from Small Newspaper Group (in September).


The Chronicle-Tribune is a morning newspaper for Marion, Indiana and surrounding areas.

The Herald-Press is the only daily newspaper published in Huntington County, Indiana.

Paxton purchased the Mayfield Messenger in Kentucky in June 2015. [3] In May 2016, Paxton purchased The Elkhart Truth in Indiana. [4]

In 2017, Paxton acquired the Grayson County News Gazette, the News Democrat Leader, and the Macon County Times from Civitas Media. [5] In January 2018, Paxton purchased the Daily Herald in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, from Wick Communications. [6] In June 2018, it purchased The Batesville Daily Guard in Arkansas from the Jones family. [7] In November 2018, Paxton purchased the Kentucky New Era . [8]

Business practices

Durham Herald-Sun

Paxton Media Group was criticized when it fired nearly 25 percent of the employees of The Herald-Sun, many of them longtime staples of the newsroom, the day it assumed ownership. Paxton defended the move by claiming that the newsroom was overstaffed and the salaries were causing the Durham, North Carolina paper to post annual losses. [1] [9] According to the Durham-based Independent Weekly , sources familiar with the Herald-Sun, Co.'s accounting ledgers, the company was operating profitably at least 6 months prior to Paxton's $124 million purchase. [10]

Allegations of lackluster and biased reporting by Paxton Media Group's holdings became news, again, with the dismissal of charges against the suspects in the Duke lacrosse rape case, when it became clear that The Herald-Sun editorial policy would not permit the paper to publish criticism of Durham district attorney Mike Nifong [ citation needed ], despite the fact that Nifong was facing ethics charges by the North Carolina State Bar and demands by the North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys that Nifong remove himself from the case. [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] In December 2016, Paxton Media sold The Herald-Sun to The McClatchy Company, owner of a competitor newspaper, The News & Observer of Raleigh, North Carolina. [16]

La Porte Herald-Argus

In September 2007, Paxton purchased the Herald-Argus of La Porte, Indiana amidst rumors that the paper would either be moved, merged, or have its staff severely cut, due to the recent acquisition of a number of rural newspapers in northern Indiana. [17] In order to allay those rumors, then-publisher John A. Newby wrote a column that firmly stated that the Herald-Argus was profitable and "lean" and therefore would not see any dramatic changes. [18] [19] Despite published claims to the contrary, in October, shortly after taking over operation of the paper, Paxton Media laid-off about half its staff at the Herald-Argus and moved its production location to that of the Paxton-owned Herald-Palladium in St. Joseph, Michigan, which by Paxton's own admission, has negatively impacted the paper's ability to publish timely local news. [20] [21] Reminiscent of the abrupt manner in which the Herald-Sun firings were conducted, at least one longtime Herald-Argus staffer was notified of her termination via certified mail while she recovered from surgery at home. [20] [22] The remaining Herald-Argus staffers and the staffers at other nearby Paxton-owned papers were specifically instructed not to publish information regarding the Herald-Argus staff cuts and production changes. [20] The Herald-Argus' website has also removed the 17 September 2007 column which promised that there would be no staff cuts or relocation of the paper's offices under Paxton's watch.

In July 2008, Paxton consolidated operations even more, making the publisher, managing editor, and other editorial management the same for both papers.

High Point Enterprise

On 15 November 2007, reports indicate that Paxton dramatically cut the staff of the High Point Enterprise in High Point, North Carolina, which Paxton took control of in 2004. [23] This is the third round of layoffs since 1999, when Paxton first purchased a stake in the paper. Senior Enterprise staff frequently criticized Paxton's management of the paper, arguing that there was a quantifiable reduction in local coverage. [24]





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  1. 1 2 3 Clemmons, Laura A. (2005). "Paxton Media Group extends its influence far beyond its Western Kentucky base". Institute for Rural Journalism & Community Issues, University of Kentucky. Retrieved 2007-06-05.
  2. "Paxton Media Group LLC Company Profile". Yahoo! Finance. Retrieved 2007-06-05.
  3. "Paxton Media Group Acquires Mayfield (KY) Messenger". Editor & Publisher . June 4, 2015. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  4. "Paxton Media Group Acquires Elkhart Truth". Editor & Publisher . May 2, 2016. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
  5. "Quarterly Updates - 3rd Quarter 2017". Dirks, Van Essen & Murray. 2017-09-30. Retrieved 2017-10-28.
  6. "Paxton Media Group purchases The Daily Herald". The Daily Herald. 2018-01-31. Retrieved 2018-05-10.
  7. "Paxton Media acquires Batesville paper". Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. 2018-06-05. Retrieved 2018-10-05.
  8. "Kentucky New Era sells to Paxton Media Group". Kentucky New Era. 2018-11-30. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  9. "Veteran Employees Surprised By Rapid Firings When Paxton Buys Herald-Sun". National Press Photographers Association. 2005-01-05. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
  10. Morgan, Fiona (2005-01-12). "Paxton may have overpaid for Herald-Sun". The Independent Weekly.
  11. "Duke Rape Suspects Speak Out". 60 Minutes . 2006-10-15.
  12. Neff, Joseph (2006-08-06). "Lacrosse files show gaps in DA's case". The News & Observer. Archived from the original on 2006-09-28.
  13. "Nifong's move". The News & Observer. 2006-12-23.[ permanent dead link ]
  14. "Investigate the investigation". The Charlotte Observer. 2006-12-23. p. 12A.
  15. "The prosecutor is guilty". The Star-Ledger. 2006-12-30. p. 022.
  16. Murawski, John (2016-12-21). "McClatchy buying Durham Herald-Sun newspaper in North Carolina". McClatchy DC Bureau. Retrieved 2018-05-10.
  17. "Paxton Media Group buys another Northern Indiana paper, getting monopoly on dailies in county". The Rural Blog. 2007-09-09. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
  18. Newby, John A. (2007-09-17). "Sale of H-A does not impact a legacy!". Herald-Argus. Google Cache. Archived from the original on 2013-01-25. Retrieved 2007-12-20.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  19. "Huntington (IN) Herald-Press Sold to Paxton Media Group". Suburban Newspapers of America. 2007-05-01. Archived from the original on 2007-08-11. Retrieved 2007-12-20.
  20. 1 2 3 Staff (2007-11-08). "Paxton Reported to be Cutting Dozens of Jobs in LaPorte, Ind". Editor and Publisher. Retrieved 2007-12-20.[ permanent dead link ]
  21. "Speak Out!: About those lottery numbers/Where're the stocks?". Herald-Argus. 2007-12-19. Retrieved 2007-12-20.[ dead link ]
  22. Craig, Randy (2007-11-09). "Things Fall Apart". Readership 101. Archived from the original on 2012-03-22. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
  23. Robinson, John (2007-11-15). "Layoffs in High Point". Greensboro News & Record . Archived from the original on 2007-12-18. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
  24. Morgan, Fiona (2004-12-08). "Herald-Sun becomes a link in chain". The Independent Weekly.
  25. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2005-09-09. Retrieved 2007-06-05.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)