The Colored American (New York City)

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The Colored American
Issue of March 4, 1837
Type Weekly newspaper
Format Tabloid
Owner(s) Phillip Bell
Samuel Cornish
Charles Bennett Ray
Publisher Charles Bennett Ray
Founded 1837
Language English
Ceased publication 1842
Headquarters New York City
OCLC number 9858717

The Colored American was an African-American newspaper published in New York City from 1837 to 1842 by Samuel Cornish, Phillip Alexander Bell, and Charles Bennett Ray. When Cornish retired, James McCune Smith joined as co-editor.[1]

This is an announcement published in the newspaper

Initially published under the name The Weekly Advocate,[1] New York's Colored American was a weekly newspaper of four to six pages. It circulated in free black communities in the Northeastern United States.

The Colored American focused on the moral, social, and political elevation of free colored people and the peaceful emancipation of slaves. The newspaper had a wide spread of subscribers, and employed agents in various cities, as well as abolitionists, for its marketing needs. The paper also received help from African-American churches and local abolition societies by way of fund drives and donations. Occasionally, the newspaper received cash infusions from prominent white allies. All of the donations, fund drives and supplements helped the paper to publish 38 articles and survive through 1841. Thanks to the subscribers, the interesting articles and the extra funding sources, The Colored American became an important paper of its time.


  • January 7, 1837 - Samuel Cornish, Phillip A. Bell, and Charles Bennett Ray launched The Weekly Advocate.[2]
  • March 4, 1837 - Publisher Robert Sears changes the name to The Colored American.[1]
  • 1839 - Bell leaves the paper and Charles Bennett Ray became the sole owner of The Colored American.[1]
  • 1840 - The Colored American declared in favor of Liberty Party candidate James G. Birney.
  • December 25, 1841 - The last edition of the paper was published.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Penn, Irvine G. (1891). The Afro-American Press and its Editors. The Arno Press and The New York Times. p. 32–34. 
  2. ^ a b The Colored American/Weekly Advocate at

Further reading[edit]