Ken Bishop, owner of B6 Up Pawn & Gun in Commerce, Texas and Texas A&M University-Commerce alumnus, has donated the earliest known addition of The East Texan back to the university. Bishop discovered the newspaper, which dates back to December 1915, when a woman brought a box of old papers into his pawnshop.
“A lady walked in with a box of stuff that she had found in the front yard of an elderly gentleman that had recently passed away here in Commerce,” said Bishop. “As I was looking through the box, I noticed a lot of old papers and down at the bottom was this copy of The East Texan.”
After discovering the paper, Bishop contacted the university and learned that this was the oldest edition of The East Texan on record. Previously, the oldest edition in the archives dated back to 1920s. The East Texan started in 1915, making this edition one of the first papers ever published. Featured in the paper were large advertisements for local businesses, the bookstore schedule, and how to make an appointment with Professor Mayo.
“The most fascinating thing to me about the whole East Texan was the advertising because it was so remarkably beautiful,” said Bishop.
The East Texan is a student run newspaper that is published eleven times per semester during the fall and spring. For more information on The East Texan, visit http://tamuceasttexan.com/.