The Idaho Statesman is a U.S. daily newspaper serving the Boise, Idaho metropolitan area. The paper has a circulation of 61,000 daily, 83,038 Sunday, and employs about 300 people. It is owned by The McClatchy Company.
The paper was first published as the Idaho Tri-Weekly Statesman on July 26, 1864 by James S. Reynolds; it began publication from a log cabin on the current site of Boise City Hall. Reynolds owned and operated the paper for its first eight years, selling to Judge Milton Kelly in 1872. Kelly's 17-year run ended in 1888, with the expansion to daily publication, and a name change: The Idaho Daily Statesman.
That summer, Kelly sold the paper to the Cobb family - which went on to run the paper for 70 years. Calvin Cobb published the Statesman until his death in 1928, when control was transferred to his daughter Margaret Cobb Ailshie. The paper's history site says "Ailshie insisted on a lively editorial policy, deploring 'a dull newspaper.'"
Cobb Ailshie died in 1959, and general manager James Brown took control of the paper. Federated Publications bought the Idaho Statesman in 1963. It joined five other publications in Washington, Indiana, and Michigan. Federated merged with Gannett in 1971. The paper moved to its current home on Curtis Road in Boise in 1972.
On the early morning of March 21, 2004, Idaho Statesman's pressroom caught on fire. The fire left two of the newspaper's nine press units severely damaged and two units partially destroyed. Newspapers from other cities chipped in and helped deliver papers to Boise. The cities included Nampa, Homedale and Twin Falls in Idaho; Ontario, Oregon and even Reno, Nevada.
On August 3, 2005 Gannett agreed to sell the Statesman to Knight Ridder, along with the Bellingham Herald and The Olympian newspaper of Olympia, Washington. McClatchy bought Knight Ridder in 2006.
Due to an economic recession in 2008 and 2009, and failing 36 year-old presses at the Curtis Road office, the Idaho Statesman signed a contract with the Idaho Press-Tribune to have them print the Idaho Statesman with their new presses. This contract will last 20 years.