The paper became the property of John J. Wheeler in October 1880 and was published without interruption as the Lake County Star by the imitable "Captain Johnny" until 1917, then by his son Fred, who had virtually grown up in the business, until his death in 1949. The name Wheeler is carried with an almost reverent sense of responsibility in the name of the present editor.
Cordie Ragon, for so many years editor of the Lowell Tribune, as his father, H.H. Ragon, had been before him and his brother Elmer, told us this summer of the old Lowell Star files that he treasured through the kindness of C.W. Mulinex, who had learned the printer's trade on the Star and for 66 years edited the La Belle Star in La Belle, Missouri. His death occurred about five years ago, only a short time after Cordie had visited him there. In Cordie's thanks, as expressed here, Miss Sadie Wells was included. She had worked on the La Belle Star for more than 50 years and when it was sold saw that the two bound volumes of the Star were sent on to their "heir".
Cordie has other old papers connected with the early life of Lowell -- copies of the Lowell Enterprise from December 28, 1878, to September 1879. They were edited by Rae and Hewgill, the last of the papers carrying the name of Robert Rae, Jr.
There is one copy of the Crown Point Register in Cordie's enviable collection, the issue of October 11, 1866, after Harper and Beattie had taken over the county's first newspaper, started in 1857 by Col. John Wheeler, father of John J., several years before he went off to the war between the states that claimed his life on the field at Gettysburg.
Cordie has generously put his precious "old papers," the treasured volumes of the town's first one and the other copies mentioned in the Lowell Public Library, where they are kept in a cabinet for the use of interested patrons. Centennial visitors can see them there during library hours any weekday afternoon and evening through the holiday weekend celebration.
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