Newspaper Carriers get a double dose of celebrations. Because of Barney Flaherty

Do you know Barney Flaherty? He’s not as famous as Martin Luther King, Warren Buffet or John Wayne but more on Barney in a few sentences.

International Newspaper Carrier Day is always the Saturday at the end of National Newspaper Week. This year, National Newspaper Week is October 3-9 so International Newspaper Carrier Day is Saturday, October 9.

But that brings up a question: If International Newspaper Carrier Day is always that same day, why is National Newspaper Carrier Day always celebrated on September 4?

Check it out on any calendar listing “special” national days.

And the September 4 designation as “National” Newspaper Carrier Day is all because of Barney Flaherty. Yeah, I didn’t know him either but he’s the reason.

Newspaper Carrier Day honors Barney Flaherty, the first newspaper carrier (or paperboy) hired in 1833, as well as all current newspaper carriers.

It is celebrated on September 4th, the anniversary of Flaherty’s hiring by Benjamin Day, publisher of the New York Sun.

I’m sorry it’s late for September 4 — should have used this last week — but here’s a little more info about NATIONAL Newspaper Carrier Day.

National Newspaper Carrier Day on September 4th recognizes the dedicated newspaper carriers who deliver the news in the wee hours of the morning.

A lot has changed since the first newspaper carrier. Not only have the routines changed, but their methods and the age of the people delivering has changed, too. However, the newspaper carrier still exists in some form. Each and every newspaper carrier owe their start to an enterprising young immigrant in New York City over 180 years ago. As the tradition gradually fades, their history becomes no less fascinating.

According to a captioned photo released by the Museum of the City of New York, The Sun‘s publisher Benjamin Day hired the first paperboy on September 4, 1833. A 10-year-old Barney Flaherty answered the advertisement that September day. And although the ad specified for “steady men” to apply, Flaherty so impressed the editor that Day was so impressed by the boy’s sincerity; he gave him the job.

Down on the corner, passersby soon heard Flaherty hawking his sales pitch. Eventually, the universal chorus of boys (and sometimes girls) calling, “Paper! Get your paper, here!” could be heard.

In 1960, The Newspaper Carrier Hall of Fame was created. It acknowledges some famous newspaper carriers in our nation’s history, too. Included in the Newspaper Carrier Hall of Fame are Martin Luther King Jr., Warren Buffet, and John Wayne.

And that brings up the question, Why did the man follow the newspaper carrier down the street?

He wanted to keep up with “The Times.”

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