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History of the Florida Flambeau and FSView

Lucille Freemen Yates
Lucille Freeman Yates suggested the name Flambeau when the paper first began publication in 1915.

     On January 23, 1915 the first issue of the weekly student newspaper, the Florida Flambeau, was published. Lucile Freeman Yates of Tallahassee suggested the name of the newspaper, Flambeau, which comes from the word torch.
     Ruby Leach, the newspaperís first editor, informed Milton Smith, editor of the Tallahassee Democrat, that there was not enough news about the Florida State College for Women in the paper. After this conversion she was hired to write two columns per week on campus activities, at $0.50 per column. Realizing that there was enough going on around campus to put out its own newspaper, President Conradi presented this idea to the students, and from there the Florida Flambeau was born. Their offices were located in the basement and first floors of the Education Building.
Flambeau Flier
In the 1930's students distributed the newspaper in a wagon they called the "Flambeau Flier."
     Faculty sponsors were responsible for supervising and evaluating all student publications, including the Flambeau. In the beginning the staff cautiously worded its editorials and rarely published commentaries. Dr. William George Dodd, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and also head of the Department of English, reviewed each edition before it was printed. After about a year in publication, an editorial occasionally voiced an opinion contrary to regulations but consistent with common sense. It wasnít until after WWI that the Flambeau dared challenge the administration out-right. As the Student Government Association gained strength and focus, so did the Flambeau, devoting much of their attention to campus issues. In 1920 an editorial challenged the habit of several faculty members skipping required chapel services. It asked, "Where are the professors in chapel? We meet every day at noon in the auditorium for a few minutes of devotion, yet a majority of the teachers are conspicuous for their absence."
1953 Flambeau new staff
Members of the 1953 Flambeau news staff.
     
      In 1932 a new and lucrative source of income became a possibility for the
Flambeau, cigarette advertising. The Executive Council composed of deans and college officials voted against the paperís request to advertise these products. However, by 1935 both Lucky Strike and Chesterfield cigarette ads appeared in the publication.
     The 1948-49 Student Handbook defined the Flambeau as ". . .a torch of expression: the studentís means of taking stands for and against all issues that arise; it is a torch of knowledge: the studentís way of knowing what is being done in every phase of life here; and it is a torch of progress: the means by which students may further new ideas and new plans for this university."
 
      For the next twenty years the Florida Flambeau remained on campus. Then in 1972, funding for the newspaper was cut. Struggling for survival, the Flambeau moved off campus. They proved their critics wrong while they continued to prosper as an independent paper. Until 1992 when many students, angered by what they considered to be biased reporting, spoke out against the Flambeau.
1953 Flambeau Editor-in-Chief, Bill Dunn
1953 Flambeau Editor-In-Chief, Bill Dunn.
From these protests a group of students decided to begin their own "non-biased" newspaper, and started the FSView. FSU alumnus and Seminole Boosters Executive Director Charlie Barnes created the idea for the name, short for the Florida State View.
 
  Due to financial difficulties, in January of 1998 the Florida Flambeau stopped printing. Six months later, the FSView purchased the Florida Flambeau in order to save the publications 83-year-old history and name. Now officially known as the FSView & Florida Flambeau, it serves as the official independent student newspaper for Florida State University.

*Click on pictures for larger image.

For the online edition of the FSView and Florida Flambeau, go to http://www.fsunews.com/index.shtml


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