Wall Street Journal: Financial News since 1889

The front page of the first Wall Street Journal from 1889. (Dow Jones & Company via Wikimedia Commons)
The front page of the first Wall Street Journal from 1889. (Dow Jones & Company via Wikimedia Commons)

On this date in 1889, the Wall Street Journal was published for the first time.

Here are some things you may not have known about the newspaper.

The company started by publishing news bulletins delivered by hand to traders at the New York Stock Exchange in the early 1880s. Eventually, the updates would be combined into a publication called the Customers’ Afternoon Letter.

The Journal was started by Charles Dow, Edward Jones and Charles Bergstresser. Dow and Jones ran the company, while Bergstresser, who was the paper’s chief financier, was an otherwise silent partner.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was launched in 1896 which was originally an index of 12 industrial stocks. The index has since expanded to 30 companies. The only one remaining from the original list is General Electric, although it hasn’t been a part of the index the entire time.

On the first day it was published, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 62.76. On Thursday, the average closed at 17,895.88, which was down 22.74 points on the day.

The Dow Jones Company was purchased by Clarence Barron in 1902. Under Barron, the Journal’s circulation went from around 7,000 to 50,000 at the end of the 1920s. Between the 1940s and 1960s, the paper’s circulation increased to 1.1 million.

In 2007, Dow Jones was purchased by News Corporation for about $5 billion.

The Journal is known for its conservative, pro-business editorial page. The newspaper has won more than 30 Pulitzer Prizes for its reporting.

Our question: What day of the week was the Wall Street Crash of 1929?

Today is Air Force Day in Ukraine. If you’re looking to establish a national holiday, today would be a good choice. Not a lot of competition.

It’s unofficially Collector Car Appreciation Day, Cow Appreciation Day and Video Game Day.

It’s the birthday of actor Jeffrey Tambor, who is 72; celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck, who is 67; and musician Beck, who turns 46.

Because our topic happened before 1960, we’ll spin the wheel to pick a year at random.

This week in 1989, the top song in the U.S. was “Good Thing” by Fine Young Cannibals.


The No. 1 movie was “Batman,” while the novel “The Russia House” by John le Carré topped the New York Times Bestsellers list.

Take-home test winner

Jim Cardillo


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