Cleveland County Herald

In 1888, George H. Tisdale started the Cleveland County Herald at Rison (Cleveland County). It was a Democratic paper published on Thursdays. Sallie Irene Robinson worked briefly as editor for Tisdale and, by 1893, had purchased the paper. The Herald is the longest-running newspaper in Cleveland County.

Robinson learned the newspaper business from her uncle, Leon Roussan, who ran the Osceola Times (1870–) in Osceola (Mississippi County). Robinson moved to Rison in 1892 or 1893 and quickly took over the Herald. In 1895, she married lawyer William Joseph (Billie) Stanfield, becoming Sallie Robinson-Stanfield. She is the first recorded woman in Arkansas to hyphenate her last name after marriage. Together, they had five children, and Robinson-Stanfield taught them all the newspaper business. In 1897, Stanfield took over managing the newspaper while Robinson-Stanfield focused on raising their children. In 1906, Stanfield died suddenly, likely from tuberculosis. Robinson-Stanfield briefly resumed running the Herald before selling it to James Monroe Raines. Raines leased the paper to various editors.

In 1912, Sallie Robinson-Stanfield bought the paper back and again worked as manager and editor. In 1915, she married John Clayton Riley, editor of the Blade (which ceased publication in 1929) in Walnut Ridge (Lawrence County). At this point, she changed her name to Sallie Riley. She sold the paper for a final time to Henry Burgess Dixon Sr. in 1915 and moved to Walnut Ridge.

Dixon ran the Herald for a few years but died in the 1918 influenza pandemic. Annie L. Hughes Dixon, his widow, sold the paper to local businessmen, who published the paper under the News Publishing Company. Ethel M. Sumerow worked as editor until her death in 1922.

Sallie Riley’s son Calvin Alpheus Stanfield ran the paper for a year before selling it to Guy Mack Sadler and Harold Davis Sadler in 1923. The Sadlers sold their interest to Leland Callaway Ackerman by 1929, but in 1933 Guy Sadler bought the paper back. The Sadler family—Guy Sadler, William (Bill) Sadler, and Stan Sadler—ran the Herald until 2002, when they sold it to Britt Talent. Talent runs the paper as publisher and editor, with Stan Sadler staying on as editor for one of the weekly pages.

For additional information:
Allsopp, Frederick W. History of the Arkansas Press for a Hundred Years and More. Little Rock: Parke-Harper Publishing Co., 1922.

Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Southern Arkansas. Chicago: Goodspeed Publishing Co., 1890.

Cleveland County Herald. (accessed November 9, 2023).

Dougan, Michael B. Community Diaries: Arkansas Newspapering, 1819–2002. Little Rock: August House, 2003.

Staff of the Arkansas Digital Newspaper Project
Arkansas State Archives

A version of this entry was initially published on both the website of the Arkansas State Archives and the Library of Congress’s Chronicling America project and is used here with permission.



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