The Palm Beach Post marks a milestone this year:
100 years as a morning daily newspaper. Why does that matter? Because your local newspaper is your neighbor, your watchdog and your business partner.

Thank you for letting us serve you for a century

By Tim Burke, Publisher

When The Palm Beach Post debuted as a morning daily 100 years ago, letters of praise poured in, including one from the Tallahassee Democrat: “It is a real up-to-date sheet in a live community.”

Other letters called The Post “a wide-awake daily” and “one of the brightest in the land.”

Lively, wide-awake and bright — some things haven’t changed in Palm Beach County or at The Post.

The best description of the early Post came from the owner of the paper himself, Joe L. Earman, a colorful man who served up jokes — called “Post Roasties” — alongside local news and dispatches from around the world.

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CMGd Single Player

Video by Joe Forzano and Thomas Cordy / Palm Beach Post staff.

'This experience instilled the work ethic I have to this day'

The Palm Beach Post asked former paperboys and girls to be part of our centennial celebration by writing their memories. We heard from almost 100, including Roger G. Thomas of Tequesta, who wrote this letter.

I celebrated my 70th birthday recently doing what I’ve done for the past 60 years — reading The Palm Beach Post.

I have been a general contractor for more than 40 years in Palm Beach County. Two years ago the company I founded in 1974 became a second-generation design-build firm based in Palm Beach County. I turned the reins over to my son, Christian Thomas. I still work in the business and now hold the position of CEO. We do a lot of work in Palm Beach County — from El Cid to Jupiter Island.

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The Centennial Collection

Bold images…amazing moments. The Palm Beach Post’s award-winning photo staff opens your eyes to the world.

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The storytellers behind the stories

By Frank Cerabino

In the part of the newsroom called “the morgue,” there are folders of desiccated paper clippings, rolls of microfilm and a cabinet full of index-card-sized plastic sheets of microfiche.

There’s a whole world in those cards and sheets, lifetimes of people compressed into two dimensions, countless stories of dire events rendered forgotten by time, and bulging envelopes of busy newsmakers who aren’t busy anymore.

For 100 years, The Palm Beach Post has been telling the stories of people outside the newsroom. And the morgue is a repository of that century of effort.

But it doesn’t tell the whole story.

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Best of The Palm Beach Post: 20 must-reads
1. Rob Hiaasen: Dr. Acer's Deadly Secret: How AIDS joined the lives of a dentist and his patients
Dr. David Acer decorated his Jensen Beach office with children's drawings, stick-figured kids playing under splashy suns. "To Daddy. Love, Mike," one crayon inscription read.

2. Paul Lomartire: Maggie, the poet prostitute
A T-shirt decorated with the words "Crack Whore" costs $16.95 on the Internet. Maggie Williams considers this, her head tilted like a confused terrier. "Who would buy that?" she asks in a raspy voice. "That's the stupidest thing I ever heard."

3. Bill Cooper: One year without Yasmin
Not too many men can say they've had the perfect family. But I can. A loving wife, two beautiful children, a future that seemed so bright, so good. Until Dec. 10, 1998, one year ago, the day my wife, Yasmin, died. She was 32.

4. Susan Spencer-Wendel: A final journey to help a sick wife live — and die — with joy
As Susan Spencer-Wendel faced the disease that would eventually end her life — Lou Gehrig’s disease, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) — she embraced life and took joy in the time she had. Including one last trip to Budapest.

5. Jan Tuckwood: Survivor of Delta Flight 191 crash tells her story — ‘I’m not a hero. I’m a survivor.’
On Aug. 2, 1985, Delta Flight 191 crashed on landing in Dallas. Of 163 people on board, just 27 survived, including Wendy Robinson Fernsell, a flight attendant from West Palm Beach. It has taken her 30 years to tell her story.

6. Barbara Marshall: Children put up for adoption in classified ads hope to put family back together
In 1948, a Lake Worth couple offered their children up for adoption. In a classified ad. Some of the Harvey children have found each other. But where are Billie, Diana and Thomas?

7. Paul Blythe: Offbeat author thrives ‘on his own terms’
Pete Dexter, a wandering newspaper columnist and author of three novels, has had an offbeat way of meeting the world since he was a reporter and columnist for The Palm Beach Post. Here, insight into his sense of humor and novel take on life.

8. Michael Browning: Losing a mother, into the gentle night
When Michael Browning lost his mother in 2003, he had just seen her alive an hour earlier. He tells the heartbreaking tale of how she dwindled over a year, the many steps that led to her end, and the “little joys, little satisfactions” that marked the happier days.

9. Carlos Frias: A trip to Cuba, and a people divided yet united
Shirtless boys, browned by the unrelenting sun, play baseball barefoot on the grounds of the fortress where Carlos Frias’ father was held prisoner. Frias went back in 2006, a painful journey that brought him closer to understanding his family, and his past.

10. Larry Aydlette: ‘Dad, we did the best we could and in the end, we understood’
Larry Aydlette always hated trying to find a Father’s Day card. They never fit the distant relationship he had with his father — until the year it didn’t matter anymore.

11. Ron Wiggins: Columnists go tribal during Munyon Island misadventures
The bugs. The heat. The urge to oust annoying fellow castaways. The plot of the television show “Survivor”? Or the story behind Post columnists' Munyon Island (mis)adventures in 2000? Enjoy this hilarious, heart-felt account of writers gone tribal. (“Think of postal but friendlier.”)

12. Eliot Kleinberg: The Forgotten 14, a story never told
Three days before Christmas in 1943, two hours past midnight, 14 men climbed into an airplane and lifted into the dark sky over the slumbering hamlet of West Palm Beach. Their journey lasted but a few moments, and killed every one of them.

13. Ron Wiggins: Starting with a new adventure with a last time
For writer Ron Wiggins, the “last time” was a thing to be cherished. He wrote dozens of columns about the last times of the childhood stages that mark not the beginning of a new stage, but the close of an old. In this column, Wiggins marks a significant last time: his final column for the Post.

14. Christine Evans: My Cambodia, an adoption story
One day, a photo pops up on the computer screen of a couple in South Florida. And there she is: a little girl, an orphan, who, with the proper signatures, soon could be their daughter.

15. Joel Engelhardt: How 'Old Man' MacArthur bullied, bulldozed and built North Palm Beach County
Fifty years ago this week, Palm Beach County met the man who would steer its future: John D. MacArthur.

16. Steve Mitchell: The Purloined Palm Beach mantra caper
I was sitting at my desk trying to decide whether to work or nip across the street for a couple of belts of snakebite remedy when a form that was unquestionably feminine appeared before me. It was clothed in a silken dress that clung lovingly in all the right places.

17. Dave George: Lake Worth's lost legend Herb Score
His career, seemingly bound for Cooperstown, was cut short by a stunning on-field accident. But he never wanted his life defined by what happened May 7, 1957.

18. Scott Eyman: “Papa” Hemingway’s journey
It was a good day to die. He rose at dawn, as was his custom. It was Sunday, July 2, 1961, and it promised to be a typical sunny summer morning in Ketchum, Idaho.

19. Dave George: Jack Nicklaus, “The Bear,” at 75
On milestone birthday, we can celebrate career of ageless achievements (especially one in 1986).

20. Val Ellicott: Long days, sleepless nights for William Kennedy Smith’s defense team
The defense never rested. William Kennedy Smith's attorneys often worked 20 hours a day during his 10-day rape trial and could not even remember clearly names of the condominium complexes where they had slept.