The Putnam Standard Folds


Longtime Newspaper Ceases Publication

It is with great regret that we must report that after 145 years of service to Putnam County, The Putnam Standard, formerly The Putnam Democrat, ceased publication April 2nd, 2015. Its sister newspaper, The Cabell Standard, also folded. Websites for each paper no longer function. Both were weekly publications.

"While we appreciate the support of many people in the community, unfortunately we've been unable to grow to a sustainable level," The Standard published on its front page. "We would like to thank the numerous people for their support-advertisers and organizations who supported a local business and believed in community journalism; coaches and teachers who were generous with their time and showed great respect for our newspaper; our readers who were devoted and kept us in check; the Putnam County youth who allowed us to follow their achievements and document them in the newspaper; our freelance photographers, Jack Rose and Eddie Ferrari; and our staff who were diligent and hard working.

"We appreciate the long tradition of this newspaper, starting with the Putnam Democrat and Putnam Post almost 146 years ago."

While the newspapers existed for more than a century, it was only since August of 2013 that they were properties of Stadelman Publishing LLC, which is owned and operated by Kelly and Christopher P. Stadelman. He was a longtime editor of The Charleston Daily Mail and is currently the Communications Director of West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin.

Though some may have considered The Putnam Standard to be a competitor of, we never felt that way. Our view is that it is most important for communities to have multiple news sources, news viewpoints, and that such diversity is a benefit to everyone. While The Putnam Standard focused on more "soft" news and covers a larger blend of "hard" news and "soft" news, we respected The Putnam Standard's work and place in Putnam County and hate to see it go away.

When first learned that The Putnam Standard was planning to shut down, we contacted owner Kelly Stadelman and tried to find a buyer to keep the newspaper in business and save jobs. Unfortunately, we were not able to make that happen.

The last couple of decades have been tough on newspapers. Many have ceased publication or merged with other papers in order to survive. Legal advertising keeps many alive as sponsorships dwindle. Internet news sources and cable television channels have cut into newspaper readership. is online only and does not benefit from government-mandeted legal ads.