Reading Eagle

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Reading Eagle
Reading Eagle front page.jpg
The July 27, 2005, front page of the
Reading Eagle
Type Daily newspaper
Format Broadsheet (1867–2009; 2018–) Berliner (2009–2018)
Owner(s)Reading Eagle Company
Publisher MediaNews Group
Headquarters345 Penn St.
Reading, Pennsylvania 19603-0582
, U.S.
ISSN 2469-3448

The Reading Eagle is the major daily newspaper in Reading, Pennsylvania. A family-owned newspaper until the spring of 2019, its reported circulation is 37,000 (daily) and 50,000 (Sundays). [1] It serves the Reading and Berks County region of Pennsylvania.


After celebrating its sesquicentennial of local ownership and editorial control in 2018, the Reading Eagle was acquired by the Denver-based MediaNews Group's Digital First Media in May 2019. [2] [3] [4] [5]


The newspaper was founded on January 28, 1867. [6] Initially an afternoon paper, it was published Monday through Saturday, and a Sunday morning edition was added later.

In 1940, The Eagle acquired the Reading Times, which was the city's morning paper, though they remained editorially separate newspapers. [7] [8] [9] The staff of the two papers was combined in 1982. [10] In June 2002, the Reading Times ceased publication, and the Eagle became a morning paper. [10] [11] The two newspapers published a joint Saturday-morning edition since 1988.

Author John Updike worked at The Eagle as a copyboy in his youth for several summer internships in the early 1950s, and wrote several feature articles. [12] [13]

In 2009, the newspaper switched to a Berliner format and laid off 52 employees in late April of that year. [14] [15]

After celebrating its sesquicentennial of local ownership and editorial control, the family-owned newspaper suffered financial hardships, and cut 16 percent of its newsroom staff on May 23, 2018. Several months later, it reverted to its previous broadsheet size. [16] Less than a year later, the company announced it was filing for bankruptcy protection on March 20, 2019. [17] In May 2019, the newspaper was acquired by the Denver-based MediaNews Group's Digital First Media division in May 2019. [18] [19] [20] [21] As of July 1, 2021, MNG has laid off numerous employees from the newsroom, where no salary increases have been issued since 2008. MNG also doesn't contribute to a 401(k) plan.

Sunday edition

For many years, the Sunday Reading Eagle featured a banner on its Sunday comics section advertised as the "Biggest Comics Section in the Land", [22] and ran over 50 features until the late 1980s. Until 1995, it occupied two sections. It carried half pages of Prince Valiant , Hägar the Horrible , and Tarzan , and smaller versions of Dick Tracy , The Phantom , and other popular humor strips. On July 8, 2018, however, it followed the path of most dwindling American newspapers, and reduced the size of its comics section and of the strips it carries.

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  1. Rubinkam, Michael (May 22, 2019). "Bankruptcy judge approves sale of Reading Eagle to chain". Archived from the original on May 23, 2019.
  2. Fernandez, Bob. "Who will own the Reading Eagle? A bidder emerges, but will it get chosen?" Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: The Inquirer, May 17, 2019.
  3. Southwick, Ron. "MediaNews Group stands as lone bidder to buy Reading Eagle; auction canceled." Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: PennLive, May 16, 2019.
  4. Mekeel, David. "MediaNews Group in line to buy Reading Eagle's assets Archived May 22, 2019, at the Wayback Machine ." Reading, Pennsylvania: Reading Eagle, May 17, 2019.
  5. Mekeel, David. "After 151 years of local ownership, Reading Eagle readers reflect on community coverage Archived May 18, 2019, at the Wayback Machine ." Reading, Pennsylvania: Reading Eagle, May 2019.
  6. "Newspaper 'Morgue' Vital Need to Editorial Department". Reading Eagle. November 15, 1938. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  7. "Eagle Buys Reading Times". The New York Times. January 26, 1940. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  8. "Reading Eagle Co. to Install New $2.25 Million Color Press". Reading Eagle. December 21, 1969. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  9. George M. Meiser I.X. (July 20, 1983). "Newspaper History in Reading had its start in 1789". Reading Eagle. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  10. 1 2 "A Short History of Reading Eagle Company". Reading Eagle. Archived from the original on February 1, 2013. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  11. "Reading (Pa.) Eagle Joins with Times". AP Online. Associated Press. June 28, 2002. Archived from the original on November 3, 2012. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  12. Christopher Lehmann-Haupt (January 28, 2009). "John Updike, a Lyrical Writer of the Middle-Class Man, Dies at 76". The New York Times . Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  13. Bruce R. Posten (January 29, 2009). "Before the fame, literary giant John Updike was just a newspaper copy boy". Reading Eagle. Archived from the original on March 19, 2012. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  14. Strupp, Joe (May 5, 2009). "'Reading Eagle' Layoffs Offer No Severance". Editor & Publisher. Archived from the original on May 7, 2009. Retrieved May 6, 2009.
  15. "Reading Eagle reduces work force". Reading Eagle. May 1, 2009. Archived from the original on May 4, 2009. Retrieved May 6, 2009.
  16. "Reading Eagle reduces editorial workforce". Reading Eagle. May 23, 2018. Archived from the original on March 20, 2019. Retrieved March 20, 2019.
  17. "Reading Eagle Company files for bankruptcy protection". Reading Eagle. March 20, 2019. Retrieved March 20, 2019.
  18. Fernandez, "Who will own the Reading Eagle? A bidder emerges, but will it get chosen?" The Inquirer.
  19. Southwick, "MediaNews Group stands as lone bidder to buy Reading Eagle; auction canceled," PennLive.
  20. Mekeel, "MediaNews Group in line to buy Reading Eagle's assets," Reading Eagle.
  21. Mekeel, "After 151 years of local ownership, Reading Eagle readers reflect on community coverage," Reading Eagle.
  22. "Comics section". Reading Eagle. July 9, 2006. Retrieved March 5, 2010.