Quincy Newspapers, Inc., is a family-owned media company that originated in the newspapers of Quincy, Illinois. The company's history can be traced back to 1835, when the Bounty Land Register was one of four newspapers in Illinois. Over the next century, a number of mergers followed. The company moved into radio in 1947 and began television broadcasts in 1953.
Owned by the Oakley and Lindsay families of Quincy, it has strong affiliation ties to NBC and ABC, but also owns a limited number of Fox and CBS affiliates.
The corporation was formed in Quincy on June 1, 1926, as a publishing company upon the consolidation of the Quincy Herald, direct descendant of the Illinois Bounty Land Register first published in Quincy in 1835, and the Quincy Whig-Journal, descendant of the Quincy Whig founded in 1838.
The Herald was purchased in September 1891 by three men from Rockford, Charles L. Miller, Hedley John Eaton and Edmund Botsford. Miller had earlier founded the Rockford Daily Register, that city's oldest newspaper. Subsequently, Miller brought to the Herald his brother-in-law and nephew, respectively, Aaron Burr Oakley and Ray M. Oakley, the first two generations of the Oakleys in the newspaper business in Quincy. Miller spent four years in Quincy, returning to Rockford in 1896 to join Harry M. Johnson in ownership of the Rockford Republic. He retired as editor of the Republic in 1913 and died in 1921. Hedley Eaton retired in 1913 and died in 1936. Eaton's son John Dewitt Eaton stayed with the paper as Advertising Manager until his retirement in 1955.
Two brothers from Decatur, Frank M. Lindsay, Sr. and Arthur O. Lindsay, Sr. bought the Quincy Whig in 1915, with Arthur Lindsay taking up residence in Quincy as president and manager. Frank Lindsay remained in Decatur with the Decatur Herald and formed an association with another Illinois newspaper family, the Schaubs. In 1920, the Lindsays consolidated the Whig and The Quincy Journal, founded in 1883.
QNI entered broadcasting in 1947, the year it started Quincy's first commercial FM station, WQDI. The following year QNI purchased Quincy Broadcasting Co. to operate WGEM, the city's second AM station. WQDI became WGEM-FM in 1953.