Daniel Fowle (1715-1787)

Daniel Fowle was born in Boston, where he maintained a printing shop for several years until he was arrested on a charge of libel against the government of Massachusetts.

In July 1756, with the encouragement of several gentlemen in Portsmouth, he moved his printing press to New Hampshire. In October of that same year, he began printing the first newspaper in New Hampshire, The New Hampshire Gazette, which he ran from October 7, 1756 to June 1785.

The New Hampshire Gazette, October 7, 1756 (Portsmouth: Daniel Fowle)

In September 1764, Fowle entered into partnership with his nephew, Robert Fowle. This arrangement held until 1774, when differences in political opinions caused their separation.

During the Revolutionary War, Benjamin Dearborn, who had been an apprentice under Fowle, published the newspaper and changed its name to The Freeman’s Journal. After a few years, Fowle returned as publisher of the paper, and continued until 1785. He then relinquished control to Melchor & Osborne, who published it for several more years.

The Excellency of the Word of God (Portsmouth: Daniel Fowle, 1756)

In 1756, Daniel Fowle printed the first book in New Hampshire, Jonathan Parsons’ collection of seven sermons, entitled Good News from a Far Country. The first printed individual sermon was Reverend Samuel Langdon’s The Excellency of the Word of God, delivered on the occasion of the ordination of the Reverend Mr. McClintock in Greenland, New Hampshire on November 3, 1756, and was printed that same year.

Fowle also took commissions from the government and printed a small number of almanacks and other pamphlets for sale in his shop, examples of which are shown below.

Acts and Laws of His Majesty’s Province of New-Hampshire (Portsmouth: D. Fowle and R. Fowle, 1771)

An Almanack for the Year 1758 (Portsmouth: D. Fowle, 1757)