Editorial: We thank you, Rowan

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 24, 2017

The season of giving is also a season of gratitude. There could be no better time to express heartfelt thanks to the people, businesses and institutions who have helped the Salisbury Post serve this community in 2017.

Thank you for trusting us with your stories. It’s said that everyone has a story; some people have many more. They range from heartbreaking to spirit-lifting, instructive to entertaining, eye-opening to affirming. The ability to share that information helps people in Rowan County understand each other and the forces shaping our county.

We at the Post today build on the strong foundation constructed by people who came before us. In 1912, James F. Hurley moved from Concord to buy and operate the Salisbury Post, founded in 1905. The Hurley family established a sense of community pride and service that remain part of the Post’s DNA. Continuing under the leadership of James F. Hurley Jr. and then James F. Hurley III — Jimmy to his many friends — the Post partnered with readers and advertisers to keep the community connected. Ownership has changed through the years. Evening Post Publishing Co. of Charleston, S.C., bought the Salisbury Post in 1997. In 2014 the Post became part of Boone Newspapers, with offices in Natchez, Miss., and Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Meanwhile, the Post’s focus on local news has remained constant. News of what’s happening within the 524 square miles of Rowan County — and the immediate surrounding area — is our specialty.

We are grateful to the many advertisers who make our work possible. The money they spend to spread their message through the Post helps keep the lights burning, the presses running and the website updating. We hope readers understand how vital these advertisers are to our mission of providing them with local news.

Subscribers are precious and deserve great thanks. When someone accuses the Post of wanting to sell papers, we can’t deny it. But we know it takes hard work, credibility and dependability to keep readers coming back day after day. Especially when many people expect to get the news for free, we appreciate those who place value on having access to local journalism reported by a dedicated news staff.

“The truth shall make you free,” reads the inscription on the Salisbury Post building. Reporting the whole truth is the greatest challenge for journalists, and we are far from perfect. We welcome your criticism as well as your praise. Those who broadly denounce our industry as purveyors of “fake news” play a dangerous shell game, however, as if only they know where to find the truth. We appreciate readers who seek to understand more than one side of a story.

This is a day, though, to focus on eternal matters — to leave behind worldly worries and experience the awe of Christmas. As candles glow and carols sound, we wish for  you the merriest of Christmases. May it be everything you hope for and more.

— Elizabeth Cook, editor