Where did this index originate?

St. Andrews Messenger Index, 1889-1891

The St. Andrews Messenger was probably the first newspaper published in what is now Bay County. It was published on Wednesdays in Panama City beginning 1 January 1887 under proprietor J. H. Hamilton. By 1890 W. H. Emmons apparently became the editor. The paper was later consolidated with the St. Andrews Buoy by W. A. Emmons and his son-in-law Lynch (no first name). For a short while before consolidation both the Messenger and the Buoy were published. The last publication date of the Messenger was probably around 1893. No copies of this newspaper are known to be extant other than those indexed here.

Only a few scattered issues survived long enough to be microfilmed by the University of Florida in 1995. A single microfilm copy survives in the Local History Collection of the Bay County Public Library. That copy has deteriorated so badly that it has been removed from public access. The Bay County Genealogical Society felt that this valuable source of Bay County genealogical history was sufficiently important to warrant extraction of a complete, every-name index to every event. The extraction was completed by Judy Bennett between January and September 2008.

Only six issues were microfilmed, but they contain an amazing quantity of information. As an example, the 6 May 1891 edition contains articles referring to nearly 700 names of early pioneers. The microfilmed issues include:
17 April 1889
27 November 1889
1 January 1890
8 January 1890
31 December 1890
6 May 1891

In total, the index contains about 1501 entries.

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