While Pavlov was studying conditioned reflexes and the Lumiere
brothers first marketed color photography, 1907 saw the birth of the
coastal area's first newspaper, the Newport News.
In the years following, many papers were born in the harbor area.
Larger, financially dominant papers, including the Daily Pilot,
absorbed nearly all.
"When I started at the Pilot, in 1962, there was us [originally
called the Costa Mesa Globe-Herald] and the News-Press [originally
called the Newport Harbor News-Press before it merged with the
Pilot]," said former Pilot photographer Lee Payne.
The Pilot covered Costa Mesa while the News-Press covered the
harbor news. The News-Press was at 2211 Balboa Blvd. in Newport
"In the early days, the Pilot was a tri-weekly and each paper was
identical except with different front pages, as this was done to
accommodate the Newport Beach readership," said Payne. "Our
circulation [in 1962] extended from Seal Beach to San Clemente."
Late in 1962, the two papers were officially joined under one name
-- the Pilot.
"Newport-Mesa was a quiet area then," Payne recalled. "We could
get a front-page story about painting white lines down the center of
Many often wonder how the Pilot got its name.
In 1955, the Globe-Herald launched the Marina, a small Seal Beach
newspaper. The Marina acquired the small Coast Pilot of Southern
California newspaper, also in Seal Beach, from its founder, former
Navy Admiral John R. McKinney. In 1957, McKinney sold the name Pilot
to the Globe-Herald for $1, asking if they liked the name and would
use it well. Thus was born the Globe-Herald and Pilot that in turn
become the Orange Coast Pilot
There have been various mastheads used for the Pilot: the Orange
County Daily Pilot, the Orange Coast Daily Pilot, the Newport Daily
Pilot and the Daily Pilot. In 1961, Times Mirror acquired the Orange
Coast Publishing Co. [Orange Coast Daily Pilot], but later sold it.
For 15 years, the principal owner and publisher of the Orange
Coast newspapers and chairman of the Board of Orange Coast Publishing
Co. was Walter Laughlin Burroughs who, in 1957, moved the plant to
its present location on Bay Street.
In June of 1960, the Pilot went daily -- by 1971, 850 boys had
jobs as Daily Pilot carriers.
Burroughs remained at the helm of the Pilot until 1968 when he was replaced by Bob Reed. In January 1989, the Pilot became a morning
publication and, in 1993, Times Mirror re-acquired the paper as part
of Coast Community News.
Today, the Daily Pilot and the Current, published by the Orange
County Register, are the only two remaining papers in Newport-Mesa.
* LOOKING BACK runs Sundays. Do you know of a person, place or
event that deserves a historical look back? Let us know. Contact us
by fax at (949) 646-4170; e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org; or mail
at c/o Daily Pilot, 330 W. Bay St., Costa Mesa, CA 92627.