A daily newspaper located in Natchez, the Natchez Democrat was founded in 1865 by Capt. James W. Lambert and Paul A. Botto. A few months after the paper’s establishment, Lambert bought Botto’s interest and became the sole owner. Lambert and members of his family operated the newspaper until 1970, when it was purchased by James B. Boone Jr. of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The newspaper is currently published by Natchez Newspapers, which is part of the Boone Newspaper publishing group.
As the city’s leading newspaper, the Natchez Democrat has historically published local news and business and social information, celebrated local developments such as the Natchez Pilgrimage, and taken conservative stances on major political issues. Its editorials tended to fit historian Jack Davis’s argument that Natchez leaders envisioned their community as exceptionally peaceful, marked by affection and respect among all community members. In 1954 James Lambert criticized the Brown v. Board of Education decision for overstepping the proper role of the judiciary. Perhaps more unusual, during a 1965 civil rights boycott, Lambert ran short front-page editorials calling for calm, condemning lawlessness, and taking pride in Natchez’s white and African American community for avoiding riots and violence.
The newspaper is published every morning and covers Adams County and the nearby Mississippi counties of Franklin, Wilkinson, Amite, Claiborne, and Jefferson as well as Concordia Parish in Louisiana. Over the years the Natchez Democrat has established itself as an award-winning local newspaper. In the 2006 Mississippi Press Association Better Newspaper Contest the newspaper won twenty-four awards, including second place for general excellence in Daily Division B and a first-place award for best editorial page. In 2016 its daily circulation was about 8,500.
- Boone Newspapers website, www.boonenewspapers.com
- Natchez Democrat website, www.natchezdemocrat.com