The town of Blackstone was incorporated in 1845. By 1847, citizens
were feeling the need for a local newspaper. At the town meeting
which was held on January 10, 1948, voters authorized the selectmen
to loan $700 of "surplus revenue money" to Oliver Johnson. Johnson
was a well-known journalist of the time from New York. The loan
was to be for one year, without interest charges. The town also
agreed to hold the mortgage on the printing press which Johnson
bought. The newspaper office was set up in the Arcade building on
Main Street. The four-page, first edition was published on February
26, 1848. The Blackstone Chronicle was the name of the newspaper.
At the time, it was described by area residents as good-sized, well-printed
and very readable.
For reasons not made clear in town history, the last edition of
the Blackstone Chronicle was printed in September of the same year.
The town took possession of the printing press. Unfortunately, there
are no known surviving copies of the newspaper. Several copies were
in the old town library on School Street and were lost in the fire
which destroyed it's contents.
In early 1882, the editor of the Franklin Sentinel tried to revive
the newspaper by printing a Blackstone edition of his Franklin paper.
Edward Savage Esq. was hired as the local editor. The Blackstone
Valley Chronicle, was published until March 1886. Some historic
accounts refer to this newspaper as the Blackstone Compendium.
Lack of a local paper does not mean that the early residents of
Blackstone were unaware of currant events. The Woonsocket Patriot
contained news of local interest. Trains coming through town daily
from New York, New Haven, Providence, Worcester and Boston all brought
newspapers from those cities to local readers.
Through the years, periodicals and newsletters, from various organizations
have circulated in town for brief periods of time. The Council of
Aging newsletter "A River Runs Through It" is an example of a small
publication which is mailed to a specific group sharing specific
With the June 2008 edition, the Blackstone Enlightener began it's
15th year as our hometown, monthly newspaper. Since its inception
in 1993, the Enlightener has brought "items and events of local
interest, delivered free to the citizens of the town." Published
by Paulette Boyko and edited by Michael Boyko, it is frequently
the only source of reference for local information and events.