The newspapers of Ames from the first issue of the Ames Reflector, early in 1868, to the present, have all given way to the clean, and well edited pages of the Intelligencer. The Reflector was the first, although it was published at Montana, Iowa, by J. White & Co., and issued by Rev. S. Gilbert, of Ames, now a well-known religious editor of the Congregational Church. Vol. 1, No. 21, was issued June 15, 1868, and is the earliest date obtainable. Its career closed about a year later, and another Republican paper made its appearance very soon after March, 1868, when Mr. A. McFadden, its editor, located at Ames. This was the Intelligencer, the first paper published in Ames. It began as a seven-column folio, and has ever since preserved that form, with slight change, varying from seven to nine columns at times. In 1875 W. O. Robinson became a partner, but the following year it passed into the hands of John Watts, who was associated at intervals with Messrs. Gilliland and Alexander for the next two years, and about 1882 disposed of the entire outfit with steam-power press, to J. E. Duncan. On January 1, 1890, the present owners and editors, H. and S. K. Wilson, assumed control. Mr. and Mrs. Wilson still preserve its Republican tone, and furnish another example of the eminent fitness of the feminine pen in the weekly press of Story County. The Intelligencer had a short-lived rival in the Ames Monitor, a Republican paper, whose first number was issued August 20, 1885, by E. W. Clark. It passed into the hands of H. R. Crenshaw & Son, in April, 1886, and expired in July, following. During this year, also, the Message, a religious monthly, issued by Editor Everly, published a few numbers.
The post-office established at the college in 1862 was called College Farm, its postmaster: being W. H. Fitzpatrick, appointed April 23, 1862; A. J. Travis, June 17, 1864, and H. F. Kingsbury, September 27, 1865. On January 15, 1866, the name was changed to Ames, and the following postmasters have been appointees under it: H. F. Kingsbury; L. Q. Hoggatt, April 13, 1869; S. L. Lucas, June 2, 1871; Mrs. Hattie Lucas, February 25, 1876; John Watts, February 4, 1884; Parley Sheldon, October 19, 1885, and John E. Duncan, January 9, 1890. The report of the week ending May 12, 1890, shows its growth in capacity-firstclass matter mailed, 2,636 letters and 460 cards; second-class, 713 pieces; third-class, 105, and fourth-class, 18.
Colo, with its wagons of produce backed up at the depot, its busy grain and stock shippers, its creamery and its lumber yard, was intended for business from the first. It had the honor of inaugurating railway trade in Story County and so beginning a new epoch in her history. It was the most western finger-tip of the railway iron-hands that reached out into Iowa in the winter of 1863-64, and with it John I. Blair, the Cedar Rapids & Missouri River Railway town-maker, pointed to this spot as the first station in Story County, with which to first dump that hungry crew of speculators who follow close upon the wheels of the last construction train. It was intended for business, and, as the terminus lay here winter-locked, he began to lay out a town on his railway swamp-lands, secured a post-office, and, it seems, named it affectionately after a pet canine, which his new railway had cruelly crushed. The new office was established May 18, 1864, with Oscar F. Gear as the first postmaster, and a depot on the site of the present one was the first building. These arrangements however, did not count on a counter-claim to this land held by Hon. J. L. Dana, now of Nevada, and the result was that defective title stopped everything until Mr. Dana's claim was made good, in 1865,