CWRU Links
Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

CLEVELAND SHOPPING NEWS

CLEVELAND SHOPPING NEWS

The CLEVELAND SHOPPING NEWS thrived between the two world wars on the concept of a newspaper consisting wholly of ads and delivered gratis. Though claiming to be the first of its breed, the paper had remote antecedents on the local scene in 2 pre-Civil War publications, the Commercial Gazette and the Commercial Advertiser (ca. 1856-61). From its initial issue of 15 Oct. 1921, however, the Cleveland Shopping News pioneered a formula eventually copied in 60 other cities. It was owned and operated principally by the large downtown department stores, which invited Edward L. Greene of the Cleveland Better Business Bureau to draw up a code of advertising standards to govern the publication. President of the Cleveland Shopping News Co. for much of its history was Chas. H. Strong of WM. TAYLOR SON & CO. After 1926, printing of the Shopping News was handled in its own plant at 5309 Hamilton Ave. Originally a weekly, the paper at its height was delivered twice a week by 1,200 carriers to 345,000 households. Excessive operating costs were blamed for the suspension of regular publication with the issue of 1 July 1954, although the name was revived thereafter for direct-mail advertising campaigns.