Celebrating the Giddings Times & News: A Cornerstone of Community Development

Celebrating the Giddings Times & News: A Cornerstone of Community Development Main Photo

6 Oct 2023


Giddings, a quaint Texan town, has been home to not one but several newspapers, each leaving its indelible mark on the community’s history. From the inception of the first newspaper in 1874 to the active Giddings Times & News of today, these publications have been instrumental in shaping local narratives.

Youthful Ambition: L.M. “Buddy” Preuss Takes the Helm

In 1961, the Giddings News transformed when Mrs. Ida Bloh Bloom hired 19-year-old L.M. “Buddy” Preuss as its editor. This daring move made Preuss the youngest editor ever in Texas at the time. His youthful energy and passion set the stage for the newspaper’s enduring legacy, working for Mrs. Bloom until 1965.

Harold Bredlow, who was not originally from the Giddings area, bought the Giddings News and Giddings Star in 1965. Buddy opted to not work for the new company and took a new job with the Bastrop Advertiser. Buddy commuted to and from Giddings to Bastrop. The residents and businesses of Giddings felt Mr. Bredlow’s company wasn’t properly representing the town, and they urged Buddy to start his own paper, which he did, a year later.

In July 1966, Buddy and his new wife Louise embarked on their journey by producing the first issue of the Giddings Times. Their new newspaper company produced the first issues out of Buddy’s father’s dry clean shop. Little did they know that this humble beginning would transform into a vital community institution.

One year later, Buddy and Louise bought out Mr. Bredlow in 1967, and merged all the papers into one publication—the Giddings Times & News. The Preuss family has proudly owned and operated the newspaper ever since. Upgrading from Buddy’s father’s dry cleaning shop to its current space in 1968, the 6,580-square-foot building has served as the headquarters of the Giddings Times & News.

Connecting Communities: The Giddings Times & News’ Influence

With a readership encompassing the town’s 5,000 residents, the Giddings Times & News enjoys strong circulation and sales at local grocery stores and newsstands. This newspaper is more than just ink on paper; it reflects Giddings’ heartbeat, discussing local government affairs and community events and fostering connections between law enforcement agencies and the community in Giddings, Texas.

Attracting Jobs and Industry to a Small Town

In a town where attracting jobs and industry is paramount, the Giddings Times & News play an indispensable role. It is a platform to promote local events, businesses, and economic development, ensuring Giddings thrives.

Unlike other newspapers struggling for survival, local businesses in Giddings, Texas, recognize the newspaper’s unique value. They understand that supporting the paper means supporting the community. This symbiotic relationship ensures that both the newspaper and local businesses flourish together.

“I’ve worked in other newspapers, and some of those were dying,” said Paul Schlesinger, reporter for the Giddings Times & News. “Businesses in those communities preferred to advertise on Facebook and social media because it’s free. They didn't care about supporting the newspaper, and they didn't see it as necessary. When it comes to the Giddings Times & News, the way this community and its businesses interact with the paper is different. For example, everybody knows that First National Bank is downtown, but the bank continues to advertise supporting the paper, which in turn helps us support the community.”

Unwavering Commitment of Buddy and Louise Preuss

Even at 80 and 75, respectively, Buddy and Louise Preuss work tirelessly at the newspaper they built from the ground up. Their unwavering commitment to the community is a testament to the enduring importance of the Giddings Times & News.

In celebration of National Newspaper Week, let’s remember local newspapers’ role in preserving the rich history, promoting community cohesion, and fostering economic development. The Giddings Times & News is a shining example of the vital connection between local journalism and thriving communities.

Giddings Economic Development Corporation

You know why businesses and families are choosing Giddings? Here’s a hint: Giddings offers the quality of life you want at a price that’s easier on the wallet. The flourishing city is ideally located between Houston and Austin, with access to advanced fiber-optic telecommunication networks, a skilled workforce, major transportation options, abundant groundwater, an Opportunity Zone, and several excellent properties for sale or lease.

Find out how the Giddings Economic Development Corporation can help you and your business take advantage of these benefits. Contact us today at (979) 542-2067, edcdirector@giddings.com, or staff@giddingsedc.com! Follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn!