The Bertie Ledger-Advance – a historic newspaper dating all the way back to the 1800s – recently stepped into a new adventure.
The newspaper, for the first time in its 123 years of consistent publishing, launched a website at the end of last year – www.bertieledgeradvance.com.
“Our website was just the first step in changing how we do business at the Bertie Ledger-Advance,” BLA Editor Thadd White said. “We will strive to use our website to basically become a daily news source.”
Rather than waiting until Thursday, a lot of stories on the website will be posted in “real” time. Meetings of local boards that are covered by newspaper staff will be up the next day, as will sports contests.
“Our goal is to make the Bertie Ledger-Advance more of a daily online newspaper with a weekly print edition,” White stressed. “We know this will be a change for many of our readers, but the website is an important part of keeping this historic newspaper relevant in the changing world of journalism.”
In addition to the items in each edition of the newspaper, the staff of the Bertie Ledger-Advance will have some “online only” content, which will include editorial columnists and some stories from the Associated Press wire service. This week, for example, hockey fans could have read the AP Sports preview for the upcoming Carolina Hurricanes hockey season.
“In addition, we will partner with our APG daily newspapers – the Rocky Mount Telegram, The Daily Advance and The Daily Reflector – to provide regional news and sports coverage on the website,” BLA Publisher Kyle Stephens said. “We think this will be especially exciting for our East Carolina University fans.”
As the changes take place online, the readers who still love holding the printed edition of the Bertie Ledger-Advance need have no fear – it will continue showing up in the mailbox and newsstands throughout the county.
The newspaper has published almost every day of the week and – at times – multiple times per week, but it has always continue to provide the best in news coverage to the people of Bertie County, and that will continue.
The newspaper was formed in its current state – Bertie Ledger-Advance – in 1926 when the Windsor Ledger and The Aulander Advance were consolidated into one publication. It has been under the umbrella of the Parker Brothers, the Whichard Family, Cox Newspapers Inc., and Cooke Newspapers.
Currently, the newspaper is owned by Adams Publishing Group.
“We have a strong history and are looking forward to a promising future,” Stephens said. “This is just the next logical step in giving the staff of the Bertie Ledger-Advance more tools to serve the county.”
The website launched to the public on Dec. 24 of last year, and will remain open for a free trial through Jan. 21. During that time, anyone can visit the site and read the articles available there.
Those who currently have a subscription can also go ahead and set up their online account to have access once the paywall goes live on Jan. 21. Those wishing to subscribe can choose to get the print edition and the website or just a digital only subscription. Call 252-329-9505 for details.
“When I came here nine years ago, I was excited to be editor of my hometown newspaper,” White said. “I also made a commitment that we would be ‘fiercely local’ while offering our readers as much content as possible. Thankfully, the website gives us the chance to do both and do it in a more timely manner.”