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The McGregor Mirror ends 117-year run after death of longtime editor

Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 7:23 PM CDT
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MCGREGOR, Texas (KWTX) - The McGregor Mirror, a 117-year publication in Central Texas, is ending circulation after the death of Charles Mooney, its longtime editor.

Since the early 90s, the local newspaper had been owned and operated by Bonnie Mullens, brother Charles, and sister Mynette Taylor.

“We would’ve loved to have found a buyer and had a big party introducing them,” said Mullins, the managing editor, “But this was just a sad retirement.”

There was an old joke in the newsroom that some of the dust on the type set was 117-years-old. Now, with the closure of the Mirror, more dust could start to gather.

“I just think that’s the biggest blessing - that we were all able to work together,” Taylor said.

The newsroom operated in a building off McGregor’s Main Street. Some of the old printing equipment is still in the back room.

They were forced to cease publication after the sudden death of their brother.

“We know how important a newspaper is to a town,” Mullens said. “It was a very hard decision and it was like another death in our family.”

The of the Mirror’s publication run was also felt by McGregor residents who grew up in a generation that shifted from newspapers to electronic media.

Hope Lenamon was one of those who grew up with the paper. Having interned there for a year, she felt compelled to come back to the newsroom to help put together its final edition.

“You are connecting with students and kids, and adults who want to know about city council stuff,” said Lenamon, “But then you’re also getting calls from people who are wondering where they have to go to buy a permit for their garage sale.”

Though the publication has stopped, there is still hope someone else will find interest.

The family is still open to finding a buyer.

“There was a city council meeting Monday night and I was thinking, ‘Oh I’ve got to be there,’” Mullens said. “Then I was thinking, ‘no, I don’t have to be there.’”

The Poynter Institute for journalism estimates about 100 small newspapers a year close down.

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