Newspaper Man- Santa Clara County, 1870's

 Bio-Pen Pictures

            Stephen W. De Lacy was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, May 3, 1843.  Here he learned the trades of ship carpentering and steam engineering.  In 1863 he removed to New York City, and in the summer of that year sailed via Panama for California, arriving in San Francisco ,July 2.  Proceeding at once to Santa Clara County, where his parents resided, he first settled in Almaden township, and remained for two years in the employ of the company then managing the celebrated quicksilver mines.  He then removed to the city of San Jose, and went into the business of contracting and building, which he followed for several years.  In 1870 he entered the ranks of journalism, as a reporter with the San Jose Daily Independent, and shortly, in conjunction with his brother, Hugh A. De Lacy (see his bio below), started the San Jose Weekly Reporter.  In 1872 he joined the Daily Record at Pioche, Nevada, remaining as its city editor for nearly a year.  Returning to San Jose in 1873, he became the city editor of the Daily Evening Patriot, and continued in the position when the name of that paper was changed to Herald.  Resigning in 1879, Mr. De Lacy began the publication of the Daily Morning Times, believing that the field was good for an independent newspaper.  In that enterprise he was associated with J. G. Murdoch, formerly foreman of the Herald; the editorial department being intrusted [sic] to F. B. Murdoch, a veteran journalist, formerly proprietor of the Patriot, who subsequently became a partner in the newspaper.  The firm name was Times Publishing Company.  Their first issue was on July 15, 1879, and the paper was favorably received.  On the first of January, 1880, Mr. De Lacy became sole proprietor by purchase of the interests of his partners.  From that time the success of the Times was remarkable.  The aim of the owner and manger was to present a paper which, in its treatment of local events, should be equally readable and reliable; in general, the implacable foe of wrong, the inflexible champion of right, and at all events independent in opinion, and fearless in its expression beyond the possibility of clique, faction, or sinister interest to influence.  In the realization of that ideal, his success was decisive and permanent.  But at the height of success, Mr. De Lacy conceived the idea that a daily newspaper founded and conducted on the principles of the Times would flourish in San Francisco.  Accordingly, on the sixth of September, 1883, he sold to C. M. Shortridge, proprietor of the San Jose Mercury, his entire interest in the Times, binding himself not to resume journalism in San Jose for three years.

            On the sixteenth of February, 1884, in connection with James H. Barry, a popular printer of San Francisco, Mr. De Lacy began, under what seemed favorable auspices, the publication of the Daily Evening Star.  Its principle was—in the expressive phrase of the day—“anti-boss, anti-monopoly.”  But powerful enemies and journalistic rivalry, and especially the spurious fidelity of the industrial classes, in whose interest the paper was conducted, proved too much for the enterprise.  On the nineteenth of June, 1884, having lost heavily, the Star Company suspended, promptly discharging all its obligations to a penny.  Mr. De Lacy returned to San Jose and engaged in various business.  On the sixth of September, 1886, upon the expiration of his bond, he pluckily re-issued the Daily Morning Times, meeting with great success in the enterprise of re-establishing it, conducting it upon its original plane, and pushing it up to its former position as a generous advocate of the rights of the people.

            Mr. De Lacy married, September 10, 1875, Clara J., daughter of J. W. Haskell, and has five children:  Edith Viola, Walter Haskell, Stephen Percival, Edward Ralph Merlin, and Clara Estelle De Lacy.

Pen Pictures From The Garden of the World or Santa Clara County, California, Illustrated. - Edited by H. S. Foote.- Chicago:  The Lewis Publishing Company, 1888.
Pg. 104-105
Transcribed by Kathy Sedler



The City Item/Evening News


            The City Item was established by H. A. De Lacy, in 1883.  Its name was changed, in 1885, to the Evening News, which name it still bears.

            The projector of the  journal, Mr. H. A. De Lacy, was born in New Orleans, September 23, 1845. He came to California in 1862, and went to work at the New Almaden mines as engineer.  In 1865 he came to San Jose and engaged in the business of carpenter and builder for several years.  In 1870 he was appointed deputy sheriff, where he developed great skill as a detective officer.  After his term expired as deputy sheriff, he was appointed on the police force of San Jose, and was afterward elected constable of the township.  In 1872 he published the Reporter, but discontinued it in order to devote his whole time to his professional duties.  But he had developed a taste for journalism that could not be wiped out, and in 1883 he established the City Item, intending to make it small and do all the work himself.  However, it met with such success that he was compelled to enlarge it and secure assistance in his work.  Mr. C. W. Williams, a young man of great business ability, was taken in as a partner and assumed the business management of the enterprise, Mr. De Lacy confining himself entirely to the editorial department.  This was a strong combination, and its effect was immediately apparent.  The business rapidly increased, and the paper has been enlarged no less than six times during the five years of its existence.  In 1885 the name was changed to the Evening News, which name it now bears.

Pen Pictures From The Garden of the World or Santa Clara County, California, Illustrated. - Edited by H. S. Foote.- Chicago:  The Lewis Publishing Company, 1888.
Pg. 105
Transcribed by Kathy Sedler


SANTA CLARA COUNTY The Valley of Heart's Delight