No, I’m not talking about a doorway that takes us on a shortcut to becoming the Evil Overlord, sorry. It’s the doorway to Publishing Success, although not for me, a mostly-unknown fiction writer.
This is the side entrance into the historic Dayton Daily News building, at the corner of Fourth and Ludlow Streets, in downtown Dayton. The building itself has a storied history (insert groan here – pun intended). It’s a beautiful, classically- styled office building constructed in 1910.
The Dayton Daily News (then called the Dayton Evening News) was a failing newspaper, purchased by reporter James M. Cox in 1898. Cox changed the name after purchase, and within a few years, he’d turned the business around and was ready to move to a larger facility.
He approached several banks for a loan, but none would lend him money, claiming that newspapers weren’t a profitable business. He managed to come up with the money elsewhere (I couldn’t find where). In an effort to thumb his nose at the banks who’d turned him down, he had his building designed to look like one.
The building housed the staff and printing operations of the Dayton Daily News, as well as the other newspapers it absorbed, throughout the 20th century, until the new Print Technology Center was built about 15 miles south in Franklin. The Dayton Daily News bought the Dayton Journal and the Herald, two competing newspapers, and operated all three out of the DDN building (the Journal and the Herald were soon combined, and then rolled into the Daily News in the 80’s). These were the start of the media empire now known as Cox Enterprises, which is also the parent conglomerate of several other newspapers, dozens of radio and major network and cable television stations, and online classified advertising sites.
Advertising, editorial, customer service, and all other non-printing staff were relocated in 2007 to a newly-remodeled, former NCR office building about a mile and a half away on South Main Street. The historic building on Fourth Street now sits empty, its future unknown.
Does your hometown have any famous doorways?
More at the My Town Monday blog