The Times-Journal was purchased by Patrick Graham from Southern Newspapers Inc. as of 9:00 a.m. Wednesday morning. The purchase by Graham, who was the managing editor of the Times-Journal from 1996 to 2000, will be a memorable one for the archives because the Times-Journal has been owned by the Walls family and Southern Newspapers Inc. for 63 years.

Texas Newspaper Hall of Fame inductee Carmage Walls formed Southern Newspapers. Inc. in 1951 and he and his wife, SNI co-founder Martha Ann Walls, managed it together. When Carmage Walls died in 1998, Martha Ann Walls continued operations until she died in 2014 and left the company to operate under their daughter, Lissa W. Walls, chairman and owner of Southern Newspapers Inc.

More than six decades later, the Times-Journal is parted from the Walls’ name and its legacy is entrusted to now continue under the ownership of Fort Payne Publishing Inc.

The Times-Journal is a familiar place for Patrick Graham, as he left his footprint here in 2000 when he journeyed to Albertville for a stint, then to Paris, Texas and also to Galveston. His coming back to add to that 20-year imprint is an exciting time for the Times-Journal staff. Wednesday at noon, many Times-Journal employees were introduced to Patrick Graham for the first time, and some rekindled connections that were made here years ago. Patrick has set high standards for the Times-Journal to reach to provide this community with a trustworthy news source. As a staff, we are prepared to adhere to and even raise those standards. We want our readers to understand that a change in ownership will not affect the Times-Journal’s renowned merit of providing its subscribers with a newspaper of the highest quality.

– Our View is the opinion of the Times-Journal’s editorial board, which includes Publisher Tricia Dunne and Managing Editor Kayla Beaty.

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