The Southern Cross was an Invercargill newspaper, first published in 1893 by John Ward and Joseph Wilson. It was a weekly paper that came out each Saturday, and was a separate publication from both the Auckland Southern Cross (also known as the Daily Southern Cross) which ran from 1843 to 1876, and the Wellington-based Southern Cross, published between 1946 and 1951.
Both Ward and Wilson had previously worked on one of the major Invercargill newspapers, the Southland Times. Ward had also been a sub-editor at the other major Invercargill paper, the Southland Daily News. After their partnership ended on 28 February 1898, Ward carried on the paper with his brothers William and James, trading as John Ward and Co. James Ward had trained as a printer, also working on the Southland Daily News and then for Whitcombe and Tombs in Christchurch, before coming back to join his brothers on the Southern Cross.
The Southern Cross was described in 1905 as being independent in its political views but with Liberal tendencies, more in line with the Southland Daily News than the more conservative Times.
In 1911 Ward installed a photo-engraving plant and the newspaper became an illustrated paper from 18 March that year.
It remained a family-run newspaper. Ward himself died in February 1937, aged 81, leaving his half of the business to his wife. His will stated that he wanted his brothers to continue the business and be responsible for the policy and direction of the paper. They did, until William died in May 1942. James continued for another 4 years, but then sold the business in 1946. He died the following year. The Southern Cross folded shortly after it was sold, in November 1946.