111-year-old International Falls Journal to close

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The trend of newspaper disappearance continues in northern Minnesota.

The International Falls Journal, which has served the border town since 1911, will cease publication this month.

According to an ad on its website, the newspaper and “will close all its operations at the end of June, the last issue of the Journal being published on June 24”.

The COVID-19 pandemic played a major role in the decision, the announcement says:

Like many businesses last year, the impact of the pandemic on The Journal and North Star Publishing has been dramatic. These challenges, combined with other difficult economic trends, forced us to make this difficult decision.

As CBS Duluth notes, the International Falls Journal is one of the region’s only media outlets.

Minnesota has lost other newspapers since the start of the pandemic, most recently the Southwest Journal, which closed in late 2020 after serving southern Minneapolis for 30 years.

Prior to that, Growler Magazine published its last print issue in August. In June 2020, two Iron Range newspapers merged into one, and the previous month the Duluth News Tribune reduced its publishing days.

Other Minnesota newspapers that closed during the height of the pandemic last year include the Hastings Star Gazette and Bulletin of Woodbury and Cottage Grove, Lakeshore Weekly News and Eden Prairie News.

However, the coronavirus outbreak is not entirely to blame for the closures – which has been a trend over the past decades. About 1,800 newspapers in the United States have closed since 2004, according to Penny Abernathy’s topical deserts research.

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