Herald of Truth (Periodical)
Herald of Truth (1864-1908), the first religious periodical published in the Mennonite Church (MC), first issue January 1864, 4 pp., 10 1/2 x 15 1/2 in., published by J. F. Funk in Chicago, IL, until 1867, thereafter at Elkhart, IN, until its sale and transfer to Scottdale, PA, in 1908. At first a monthly, the journal finally became a weekly. In April 1864 it was enlarged to eight pages. With reduced size (9 x 11 1/2 in.) it was increased to 16 pages in January 1867. In May 1867 the place of publication was changed to Elkhart, where Funk had set up a printing establishment of his own. The printing had been done before this time by Charles Hess of 93 Randolph St., Chicago. In February 1869 Abram K. Funk entered into partnership with his brother and the publishing firm became John F. Funk & Brother. In 1875 a stock company was organized to take over the assets and work of the firm, the Mennonite Publishing Company. In 1878 the journal was enlarged to 20 pages, still a monthly. In January 1882 it became a semimonthly with 16 pages. In 1896 the page size was again enlarged to 10 3/4 x 14 1/2, while in 1903 it became for the first time a weekly with eight pages. For one year, 29 March 1906, to 21 March 1907, it appeared as a 10-page weekly, returning to eight pages for the rest of its career. The last issue appeared on 9 April 1908, after which it was combined with the Gospel Witness to appear as the Gospel Herald, published by the Mennonite Publication Board at Scottdale, PA. Editorial changes to be noted were as follows. J. F. Funk was sole editor to 1882, when the name of John S. Coffman appears as assistant editor. In 1889 the name of A. B. Kolb was added as second assistant editor. The name of Coffman was dropped at the end of 1895, and that of Funk in January 1897, so that from 1 February 1897, A. B. Kolb was sole editor. He was displaced from 15 February 1904, to 17 August 1905, by D. H. Bender. From this time on until the end J. F. Funk and A. B. Kolb were joint editors. Thus except for a brief period of less than nine years, Funk edited the journal. A German edition, Herald der Wahrheit, was published by Funk 1864-1901. Both journals had general circulation in Ontario.
The Herald of Truth had a very great influence upon the Mennonite Church and its development throughout the entire 44 years of its existence. Through it Funk promoted Sunday schools, evangelism, missions, Mennonite history, unity, and other good causes. The paper remained Funk's personal organ, but it became a common household paper throughout the Mennonite Church (MC) both east and west, both Mennonite and Amish, losing influence only in the last years of its existence when Funk got into trouble in his home district and lost general confidence.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 707. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: Bender, Harold S. "Herald of Truth (Periodical)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1955. Web. 19 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/H471.html.
APA style: Bender, Harold S. (1955). Herald of Truth (Periodical). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/H471.html.