The Pittsburgh Courier newspaper was founded in 1910 by Robert L. Vann. At its peak, The Courier recorded a national circulation of 250,000, employing over 400 employees in 14 cities. Well-known Black scholars and political activists, including civil rights giant Dr. W. E. B. DuBois and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston wrote for The Courier. Marcus Garvey, leader of the 1920 back-to-Africa movement, was a contributing columnist. Images of life in Black Pittsburgh were captured through the lens of Charles "Teenie" Harris, nicknamed "One Shot" for nailing a picture on the first try.
The Courier chronicled the meritorious accomplishments of Black enlisted men when acclaimed reporter Frank L. Bolden covered World War II overseas from the front lines of battle. The paper's aggressive stance on Jim Crow segregation laws led many Southerners to label The Courier as "contraband." National distribution continued through Black Pullman porters who smuggled the paper south of the Mason-Dixie line on train lines. Changing times, integration and dwindling revenue contributed to the end of The Pittsburgh Courier. The New Pittsburgh Courier reappeared in 1966 as part of Sengstacke Newspapers, now Real Times, LLC.
America's Best Weekly: A Century of the Pittsburgh Courier exhibit is on display at the Senator John Heinz History Center, 1212 Smallman Street, Pittsburgh, PA, 15222, February-September 2011.
The New Pittsburgh Courier is located at 315 East Carson St, Pittsburgh, PA 15219