|Alternative title(s)||Reefton Courier and Inangahua Advertiser, Reefton Guardian, Inangahua Herald|
The Inangahua Times was published in Reefton from 1875 until it ceased publication in 1942. Initially it was issued three times a week, but by 1891 it came out daily.
The Times was started by William Joseph Potts. Potts had been involved with other newspapers on the West Coast. In 1873 he had edited Grey Valley Times at Ahaura. In 1874 he started the Reefton Courier but this didn't last out the year. Potts owned the Times until his death in 1901. His wife ran the paper after his death.
The Times had to compete with several other newspapers in Reefton. The main rival was the Inangahua Herald which had begun three years before the Times in 1872. The Times eventually absorbed the Herald in 1936.
In 1888 Reefton got a third daily newspaper, the Reefton Guardian. Reefton's population at this time was about 2,000 which was not enough to support three newspapers. The Guardian was the first to go under, probably in 1894.
It's not clear why a small town like Reefton had three daily newspapers. Certainly the 1890s was a flourishing time for newspaper publishing in New Zealand (newspaper publication peaked about 1910). Also it's likely that Reefton was seen as a town with prospects. It had been a boom town in the 1860s and 1870s. In 1888 Reefton became the first place in New Zealand to have its own public electricity supply and in 1892 it was connected by rail to Greymouth.
The Times, like many other small town newspapers in New Zealand, could not cope with the restrictions and shortages that the Second World War brought and it published its last issue on 6 June 1942.
The Times was revived as a weekly in 1946 under the title Inangahua-Murchison Times. This paper ceased in 1956.
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