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History of the Daily News-Record

The Daily News-Record and its predecessors have been the lifeblood of information for Harrisonburg and the Shenandoah Valley, as well as several counties in neighboring West Virginia, for over 100 years.

The first edition of our initial predecessor, The Evening News, was published on May 8, 1899, with some 5,000 copies hitting the street.

Today, the News-Record publishes over 23,000 copies a day for readers in the City of Harrisonburg, four Virginia counties, and three counties in West Virginia. Combined daily print and online readership is more than 70,000.

Under the News-Record flag, the paper has continued to be a window of the Valley, the state, the nation and the world for 100 years.

A 1913 merger brought together the Harrisonburg Daily News (the new name for The Evening News when it became a morning paper) with the Rockingham Daily Record. The first edition of the paper with its current nomenclature (as the Harrisonburg Daily News-Record) was June 4, 1913.

The Daily News-Record was not the only newspaper in town in 1913, but it was to be the only newspaper to last. The merger that brought the Rockingham Daily Record and the Harrisonburg Daily News together grew out of a political battle between owners of those newspapers and the Daily Times at a time when there was very little confidence that the area could support three daily newspapers.

No longer paying its own way, the Times folded late in 1912. That left the Record, the Harrisonburg Daily News and the Rockingham Register, the weekly edition of the Daily News, as the only newspapers in town. The weekly Register, which was first published in 1822, continued to be printed as a weekly edition of the Daily News-Record until 1914.

The Daily News-Record remained the lone survivor from the years of battling dailies in Harrisonburg.

In 1923, State Senator Harry Flood Byrd Sr. and associates bought the Daily News-Record.

In 1925, Byrd, manager and secretary of The Rockingham Publishing Co., was elected Governor of Virginia.

Byrd served as publisher of the News-Record from 1923 until 1939, when his son, Harry F. Byrd Jr., took the position. He served as publisher for over 60 years until retirement in 2001. Byrd's son, Thomas T. Byrd, currently serves as publisher.

The News-Record moved its operations from the Keezell building on Newman Avenue and South Main Street, where the Harrisonburg Daily News had been established, to South Liberty Street in 1941.

Rockingham Publishing Co., Inc. purchased The Valley Banner in Elkton in 1986.

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