The San Francisco Examiner

The San Francisco Examiner is a daily newspaper distributed in and around San Francisco, California, published since 1863.

Front page, first edition, San Francisco Examiner, January 12, 1865
First edition, January 12, 1865
Announcement that W.R. Hearst has become owner of San Francisco Examiner, 1887
Announcement that William Randolph Hearst has become owner of the newspaper, March 4, 1887
1942.02.26 San-Francisco-Examiner
San Francisco Examiner front page, Friday, February 27, 1942
San Francisco Examiner
The Examiner

The longtime "Monarch of the Dailies" and flagship of the Hearst Corporation chain, the Examiner converted to free distribution early in the 21st century and is owned by the San Francisco Media Company LLC. The San Francisco Examiner was sold to Black Press Group, a Canadian media publisher, in 2011.[2] As of 2014, The San Francisco Media Company LLC is held under Oahu Publications Inc., a subsidiary of Black Press Group Ltd.[3][4]

The San Francisco Examiner
TypeDaily newspaper
Owner(s)San Francisco Media Company LLC, Oahu Publications Inc., Black Press Group Ltd.
PublisherJay Curran
EditorGregory D. Andersen
Founded1863, as Democratic Press
1865 as The Daily Examiner
Headquarters835 Market St., Suite 550
San Francisco, California 94103
  • 65,000 M/T/W/F
  • 155,011 Thursday
  • 255,002 Sunday



The Examiner was founded in 1863 as the Democratic Press, a pro-Confederacy, pro-slavery, pro-Democratic Party paper opposed to Abraham Lincoln, but after his assassination in 1865, the paper's offices were destroyed by a mob, and starting on June 12, 1865, it was called the Daily Examiner.[5][6][7]

Hearst acquisition

In 1880, mining engineer, entrepreneur and US Senator George Hearst bought the Examiner. Seven years later, after being elected to the U.S. Senate, he gave it to his son, William Randolph Hearst, who was then 23 years old. The elder Hearst "was said to have received the failing paper as partial payment of a poker debt."[8]

William Randolph Hearst hired S.S. (Sam) Chamberlain, who had started the first American newspaper in Paris, as managing editor[7] and Arthur McEwen as editor, and changed the Examiner from an evening to a morning paper.[5] Under him, the paper's popularity increased greatly, with the help of such writers as Ambrose Bierce, Mark Twain, and the San Francisco-born Jack London,[9] and also through the Examiner's version of yellow journalism, with ample use of foreign correspondents and splashy coverage of scandals such as two entire pages of cables from Vienna about the Mayerling Incident;[7] satire; and patriotic enthusiasm for the Spanish–American War and the 1898 annexation of the Philippines. William Randolph Hearst created the masthead with the "Hearst Eagle" and the slogan Monarch of the Dailies by 1889 at the latest.

20th century

Hearst Building, San Francisco (2013) - 1
Hearst Building, San Francisco

After the great earthquake and fire of 1906 destroyed much of San Francisco, the Examiner and its rivals — the San Francisco Chronicle and the San Francisco Call — brought out a joint edition. The Examiner offices were destroyed on April 18, 1906,[10] but when the city was rebuilt, a new structure, the Hearst Building, arose in its place at Third and Market streets. It opened in 1909, and in 1937 the facade, entranceway and lobby underwent an extensive remodeling designed by architect Julia Morgan.[11]

Through the middle third of the twentieth century, the Examiner was one of several dailies competing for the city's and the Bay Area's readership; the San Francisco News, the San Francisco Call-Bulletin, and the Chronicle all claimed significant circulation, but ultimately attrition left the Examiner one chief rival — the Chronicle. Strident competition prevailed between the two papers in the 1950s and 1960s; the Examiner boasted, among other writers, such columnists as veteran sportswriter Prescott Sullivan, the popular Herb Caen, who took an eight-year hiatus from the Chronicle (1950–1958), and Kenneth Rexroth, one of the best-known men of California letters and a leading San Francisco Renaissance poet, who contributed weekly impressions of the city from 1960 to 1967. Ultimately, circulation battles ended in a merging of resources between the two papers.

For 35 years starting in 1965, the San Francisco Chronicle and Examiner operated under a Joint Operating Agreement whereby the Chronicle published a morning paper and the Examiner published in the afternoon. The Examiner published the Sunday paper's news sections and glossy magazine, and the Chronicle contributed the features. Circulation was approximately 100,000 on weekdays and 500,000 on Sundays. By 1995, discussion was already brewing in print media about the possible shuttering of the Examiner due to low circulation and an extremely disadvantageous revenue sharing agreement for the Chronicle.[12]

In its stylebook and by tradition, the Examiner refers to San Francisco as "The City" (capitalized), both in headlines and text of stories. San Francisco slang has traditionally referred to the newspaper in abbreviated slang form as "the Ex" (and the Chronicle as "the Chron").

21st century

Fang acquisition

Ted Fang

When the Chronicle Publishing Company divested its interests, the Hearst Corporation purchased the Chronicle. To satisfy antitrust concerns, Hearst sold the Examiner to ExIn, LLC, a corporation owned by the politically connected Fang family, publishers of the San Francisco Independent and the San Mateo Independent.[13] San Francisco political consultant Clint Reilly filed a lawsuit against Hearst, charging that the deal did not ensure two competitive newspapers and was instead a generous deal designed to curry approval. However, on July 27, 2000, a federal judge approved the Fangs' assumption of the Examiner name, its archives, 35 delivery trucks, and a subsidy of $66 million, to be paid over three years.[14] From their side, the Fangs paid Hearst US$100 for the Examiner.

On February 24, 2003, the Examiner became a free daily newspaper, printed Sunday through Friday.

Anschutz acquisition

On February 19, 2004, the Fang family sold the Examiner and its printing plant, together with the two Independent newspapers, to Philip Anschutz of Denver, Colorado.[13] His new company, Clarity Media Group, launched The Washington Examiner in 2005 and published The Baltimore Examiner from 2006 to 2009. In 2006, Anschutz donated the archives of the Examiner to the University of California, Berkeley Bancroft Library, the largest gift ever to the library.[15]

Under Clarity ownership, the Examiner pioneered a new business model[16] for the newspaper industry. Designed to be read quickly, the Examiner is presented in a compact size without story jumps. It focuses on local news, business, entertainment and sports with an emphasis on content relevant to its local readers. It is delivered free to select neighborhoods in San Francisco and San Mateo counties, and to single-copy outlets throughout San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Alameda counties, California.

By February 2008, the company had transformed the newspaper's domain into a national hyperlocal brand with local websites throughout the United States.[17]

Independent ownership

Clarity Media sold the Examiner to San Francisco Newspaper Company LLC in 2011. The company's investors included then-President and Publisher Todd Vogt, Chief Financial Officer Pat Brown, and David Holmes Black. Early, incorrect media reports stated that the paper was purchased by Black's company Black Press.[18] In 2014, Vogt sold his shares to Black Press. Present-day owners of the Examiner also own SF Weekly, an alternative weekly, and previously owned the now-shuttered San Francisco Bay Guardian.[19]

Examiner columnist Stuart Schuffman, also known as Broke-ass Stuart, was a candidate for Mayor of San Francisco in The City's 2015 mayoral election.[20][21]


In the early 20th century, an edition of the Examiner circulated in the East Bay under the Oakland Examiner masthead. Into the late 20th century, the paper circulated well beyond San Francisco. In 1982, for example, the Examiner's zoned weekly supplements within the paper were titled "City, "Peninsula," "Marin/Sonoma" and "East Bay." Additionally, during the late 20th century, an edition of the Examiner was made available in Nevada which, coming out in the morning rather than in the afternoon as the mothership San Francisco edition did, would feature news content from the San Francisco edition of the day before ~ for instance, Tuesday's news in the Nevada edition that came out on Wednesday ~ but with dated non-hard news content ~ comic strips, feature columnists ~ for Wednesday.

See also


  1. ^ "The Examiner Media Kit" (PDF). The San Francisco Examiner (Press release). 2015. Retrieved October 20, 2017.
  2. ^ Temple, James (2011-11-12). "SF Examiner to be sold to Black Press Group". The SF Chronicle. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  3. ^ Eskenazi, Joe (2014-05-06). "Todd Vogt, San Francisco Print Media Company President, Likely to Sell SF Weekly, Bay Guardian, Examiner". The SF Weekly. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  4. ^ Dudnick, Laura (2014-07-02). "New publisher named for San Francisco Media Co". SF Examiner. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  5. ^ a b Hart, James David (1978). A Companion to California. New York: Oxford. p. 441 – via Google Books.
  6. ^ "How Old Is The Examiner?". Archived from the original on 2004-06-01.
  7. ^ a b c San Francisco: The Bay and its Cities. New York: Hastings House. WPA Federal Writers' Project. 1940. p. 153. OCLC 504264488 – via Internet Archive.
  8. ^ "William Randolph Hearst, Journalist, Dies at 85". The New York Times. Associated Press. May 15, 1993.
  9. ^ "William Randolph Hearst, 1863-1951".
  10. ^ 1906 quake FAQ Archived 2006-04-14 at the Wayback Machine, Chinatown Historical Society
  11. ^ Images of the Hearst Building, San Francisco, California, by Julia Morgan
  12. ^ Mandel, Bill (March 1, 1995). "The Case For One Daily". SF Weekly.
  13. ^ a b Bryer, Amy (February 19, 2004). "Anschutz buys San Francisco newspapers". Denver Business Journal.
  14. ^ Seyfer, Jessie (July 27, 2000). "Judge clears way for Hearst to buy San Francisco Chronicle". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Associated Press – via
  15. ^ Maclay, Kathleen (April 4, 2006). "Bancroft Library receives vast archives of San Francisco Examiner". (Press release). University of California, Berkeley. Retrieved October 20, 2017.
  16. ^ Robertson, Lori (April–May 2007). "Home Free". American Journalism Review. Retrieved 2007-04-18.
  17. ^ Harden, Mark (February 27, 2008). "Anschutz's Clarity Media names online chief, recruits new editors". Denver Business Journal. Retrieved October 20, 2017 – via
  18. ^ Torres, Blanca (November 11, 2011). "San Francisco Examiner Sold to Black Press Group". San Francisco Business Times. Retrieved October 20, 2017 – via
  19. ^ Dudnick, Laura (July 2, 2014). "New publisher named for San Francisco Media Co". The San Francisco Examiner. Retrieved 25 April 2017.
  20. ^ Eskenazi, Joe (2014-05-06). "Todd Vogt, San Francisco Print Media Company President, Likely to Sell SF Weekly, Bay Guardian, Examiner". SF Weekly. Retrieved 2014-10-15.
  21. ^ Dudnick, Laura (2014-07-02). "New publisher named for San Francisco Media Co". The San Francisco Examiner. Retrieved 2014-10-15.

External links

1925 Stanford football team

The 1925 Stanford football team was an American football team that represented Stanford University as a member of the Pacific Coast Conference (PCC) during the 1925 college football season. In its second season under head coach Pop Warner, Stanford compiled a 7–2 record (4–1 against PCC opponents) and finished second in the PCC. Its only conference loss was against conference champion Washington. The team played its home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.In the first-ever meeting between Stanford and eventual conference rival UCLA, Stanford defeated the Bruins 82–0, which tied the record for Stanford's greatest margin of victory.Stanford's fullback Ernie Nevers was selected as a consensus first-team player on the 1925 All-America team. Nevers was later inducted into both the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Other key players included end Ted Shipkey and guard Fred H. Swan.

1947 Santa Clara Broncos football team

The 1947 Santa Clara Broncos football team was an American football team that represented Santa Clara University during the 1947 college football season. In its second season under head coach Len Casanova, the team compiled a 4–4 record and was outscored by a total of 158 to 109. The team played its three home games at Kezar Stadium at San Francisco.

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

"An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" (1890) is a short story by the American writer and Civil War veteran Ambrose Bierce. Regarded as "one of the most famous and frequently anthologized stories in American literature", it was originally published by The San Francisco Examiner on July 13, 1890, and was first collected in Bierce's book Tales of Soldiers and Civilians (1891). The story, which is set during the American Civil War, is known for its irregular time sequence and twist ending. Bierce's abandonment of strict linear narration in favor of the internal mind of the protagonist is an early example of the stream of consciousness narrative mode.

Ashton Stevens

Ashton P. Stevens (August 11, 1872 – July 12, 1951) was an American journalist regarded as the dean of American drama critics. His newspaper column appeared in The San Francisco Examiner and later in the Chicago Herald-American. He was theatre critic for the Hearst Newspapers for 50 years, 40 of them in Chicago. The character of Jedediah Leland in the film Citizen Kane is based on Stevens, a close boyhood friend of Orson Welles.

Bradley Inman

Bradley Inman (a.k.a. Brad Inman) is a journalist and entrepreneur who founded several media companies. Inman's knowledge of the real estate industry dates back to his days as a syndicated real estate columnist with the San Francisco Examiner. Inman is also the author of Livable Neighborhoods of the Bay Area. Inman grew up in Carlinville, Illinois and graduated from Boston University.

Ernest Thayer

Ernest Lawrence Thayer (; August 14, 1863 – August 21, 1940) was an American writer and poet who wrote the poem "Casey" (or "Casey at the Bat"), which is "the single most famous baseball poem ever written" according to the Baseball Almanac, and "the nation’s best-known piece of comic verse—a ballad that began a native legend as colorful and permanent as that of Johnny Appleseed or Paul Bunyan."

Gobind Behari Lal

Gobind Behari Lal was an Indian-American journalist and independence activist. A relative and close associate of Lala Har Dayal, he joined the Ghadar Party and participated in the Indian independence movement. He arrived the United States on a scholarship to study at the University of California, Berkeley. Later, he worked as a science editor for the Hearst Newspapers. In 1937, he became the first Indian to win the Pulitzer Prize.

Herb Caen

Herb Caen (; 1916–1997) was a San Francisco journalist whose daily column of local goings-on and insider gossip, social and political happenings, painful puns and offbeat anecdotes—"a continuous love letter to San Francisco"—appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle for almost sixty years (excepting a relatively brief defection to The San Francisco Examiner) and made him a household name throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

"The secret of Caen's success", wrote the editor of a rival publication, was

his outstanding ability to take a wisp of fog, a chance phrase overheard in an elevator, a happy child on a cable car, a deb in a tizzy over a social reversal, a family in distress and give each circumstance the magic touch that makes a reader an understanding eyewitness of the day's happenings.

A special Pulitzer Prize called him the "voice and conscience" of San Francisco."

Lester Kinsolving

Charles Lester Kinsolving, known as Les Kinsolving (December 18, 1927 – December 4, 2018), was an American political talk radio host, previously heard on WCBM in Baltimore, Maryland. He is known for being the first White House correspondent to ask questions about the HIV/AIDS epidemic during the Reagan administration; he continued to ask questions about the disease even though press secretary Larry Speakes and some other correspondents made light of it; Speakes joked that Kinsolving had an "abiding interest in the disease" because he was "a fairy". Kinsolving first asked questions about AIDS in 1982; President Reagan would not acknowledge the epidemic until 1985, by which time more than five thousand people had died from the disease.

Lewis H. Lapham

Lewis Henry Lapham (; born January 8, 1935) is an American writer. He was the editor of the American monthly Harper's Magazine from 1976 until 1981, and from 1983 until 2006. He is the founder of Lapham's Quarterly, a quarterly publication about history and literature, and has written numerous books on politics and current affairs.

London Breed

London Nicole Breed (born August 11, 1974) is an American politician from California who is the 45th mayor of the City and County of San Francisco. She formerly served as supervisor for District 5, and was president of the Board of Supervisors from 2015 to 2018.

Raised in poverty in the Western Addition neighborhood of San Francisco, Breed worked in government after college. She was elected to the Board of Supervisors in 2012 (taking office in January 2013), and elected its president in 2015. As president of the Board, Breed, according to the city charter, became the acting mayor of San Francisco following the death of Mayor Ed Lee. She served in this role from December 12, 2017 to January 23, 2018.

Breed was the winning candidate in the San Francisco mayoral special election held on June 5, 2018. Breed is the first black woman and second woman overall to be elected mayor of San Francisco. She was sworn in as mayor on July 11, 2018.

Michael Sragow

Michael Sragow (born June 26, 1952 in New York) is a film critic and columnist who has written for The Orange County Register, The Baltimore Sun, The San Francisco Examiner, The New Times, The New Yorker (where he worked with Pauline Kael), The Atlantic and Salon. Sragow also edited James Agee's film essays (for the book Agee on Film), and has written or contributed to several other cinema-related books.

Rachel Elson

Rachel F. Elson is an American journalist and editor-in-chief of Financial Planning Magazine and its associated website She was previously managing editor at and CBS She is a recipient of the 2009 Gerald Loeb Award for Online excellence in business journalism for the story "Middle Class Crunch".A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Elson was previously an editor at MSN Money, the New York Post, and

She has been a freelance editor and reporter whose articles have appeared in Time Out New York, The Washington Post,,, the New York Post and The San Francisco Examiner.

Scott Rosenberg (journalist)

Scott Rosenberg (born 1959 in Queens, New York is an American journalist, editor, blogger and non-fiction author. He was a co-founder of Salon Media Group and and a relatively early participant in The WELL.

Rosenberg's first book, Dreaming in Code appeared in 2007. It offers a detailed perspective on collaboration and massive software endeavors, particularly the open source calendar application Chandler (PIM).

His writings at, The San Francisco Examiner and elsewhere have ranged from theatre and film criticism to technology reporting and political commentary.

In 2009, he published a book on the history of blogging, Say Everything.In 2010 Rosenberg founded, a "service for reporting specific, correctable errors and problems in media coverage." In an interview, he explains, "We'll try to alert the journalists or news organization involved about your report and bring them into a conversation," which may get the error corrected. It is funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation as part of their News Challenge. In September 2012, at the end of the funding period, he explained in a blog post that 'Much of the public sees media-outlet accuracy failures as "not our problem." The journalists are messing up, they believe, and it's the journalists' job to fix things.'

Significant Others (novel)

Significant Others (1987) is the fifth book in the Tales of the City series by American novelist Armistead Maupin. It originally was serialized in the San Francisco Examiner.

The Boarded Window

"The Boarded Window: An Incident in the Life of an Ohio Pioneer" is a short story by American Civil War soldier, wit, and writer Ambrose Bierce. It was first published in The San Francisco Examiner on April 12, 1891 and was reprinted the same year in Bierce's collection Tales of Soldiers and Civilians. The setting for the story is that part of Ohio where Bierce's family lived until 1846.

The Little Bears

The Little Bears was an American comic strip created by Jimmy Swinnerton, regarded as a progenitor of the funny animal genre, as well as one of the first American comic strips with recurring characters – the titular bears. The feature debuted in 1892 in the San Francisco Examiner and ran through 1896.

The San Francisco Call

The San Francisco Call was a newspaper that served San Francisco, California. Because of a succession of mergers with other newspapers, the paper variously came to be called The San Francisco Call & Post, the San Francisco Call-Bulletin, San Francisco News-Call Bulletin, and the News-Call Bulletin before it was finally retired after being purchased by the San Francisco Examiner.

Wesley Morris

Wesley Morris (born 1975) is an American journalist, film critic and podcast host. He is currently critic-at-large for The New York Times, as well as co-host, with Jenna Wortham, of the Times podcast Still Processing. Previously, Morris wrote for The Boston Globe, then Grantland. He won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Criticism for his work with The Globe.

Canadian newspapers
United States newspapers

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