Black-Owned Newspaper ‘The Dallas Express' Documented Black History for Decades

During Black History Month, NBC 5 is taking a closer look at the men and women who broke barriers and the people shaping the future for North Texas

A front page of The Dallas Express from Jan. 13, 1900.
The Portal to Texas History

The Dallas Express, formally known as the Dallas Bee, technically was started in 1892 by William E. King.

It was the only black-owned newspaper African Americans depended on for news from not just the North Texas community, but around the country and the world. While providing information to an underserved community was important, the newspaper also kept a record of black history as it was at that time.

The paper always promised to “cover the state like a blanket,” staying on a variety of topics and served as a way for African Americans to connect for more than seven decades. The Express ownership often referred to the paper as “the South’s oldest and largest Negro newspapers.”

During a time when black people were disenfranchised, the paper was a way to provide a voice to the voiceless. Their motto: champion of justice, messenger of hope.

The paper came out every Saturday and cost a nickel for a single issue. An annual subscription was $1.50.

The paper changed ownership a few times while it was in circulation and eventually closed up shop in the mid-1970s because of declining sales.

The Portal to Texas History contributed to this report.

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