On this day February 20, 1886
Belfast Weekly News
The Belfast Weekly News was published as a weekly spin-off from Belfast News Letter, the first newspaper to be published in Belfast. It was published every Saturday from 1855. Then in 1904, the paper was published every Thursday, instead of on Saturdays. The conservative paper reported extensively on the events and news of the Orange Order in its Orange Institution columns. Donald MacRaild in Faith, Fraternity & Fighting described the publication as, ‘the almanac and bible of Orangemen outside Ireland. Essentially a digest of the Belfast News-Letter, the News reported extensively on Orange matters. Each week the paper carried secretaries’ reports on the proceedings of Orange meetings in diverse places in England, Scotland and overseas.’
The Belfast Weekly News also reported on news across Ulster and foreign affairs. It published births, marriages, and deaths across Ireland. During the 1860s, the paper followed the American Civil War. On Saturday 27 April 1861, after the fall of Fort Sumter in South Carolina, the paper informed, ‘War in America! A war of which no one can foresee the termination, or limit the extent of its disastrous effects, has been commenced; blood has already been shed in this fratricidal conflict’. During the early twentieth century, the paper followed the escalation of the Home Rule crisis, taking a pro-unionist stand. It reproduced the speeches of many of those who opposed the Home Rule bills and reported at length on the events of Ulster Day, 29 September 1912, when thousands turned out to sign the Ulster Covenant.
For this newspaper, we have the following titles in, or planned for, our digital archive:
- 1855–1914 The Belfast Weekly News.
This newspaper is published by an unknown publisher in Belfast, Antrim, Northern Ireland. It was digitised and first made available on the British Newspaper Archive in May 13, 2016. The latest issues were added in May 26, 2016.