A special commemorative edition of the Mercury from Georgian times has been reprinted for Stamford’s first Georgian Festival weekend.
Organisers South Kesteven District Council worked with the Stamford Mercury Archive Trust to choose the edition of November 14, 1717.
Four thousand copies have been reprinted to mimic both the off-white colour and soft texture of early newspapers.
Copies have been distributed to every primary school child in Stamford and will be available at key festival locations over the weekend, including Stamford Arts Centre.
The Mercury possesses the largest archive of any provincial newspaper, containing more than 20,000 newspapers and complete from the middle of the 18th century.
It also holds substantial numbers of annual volumes and individual copies prior to that, dating back to 1714.
Since 2005, the archive has been in the care of The Stamford Mercury Archive Trust thanks to a Heritage Lottery Fund grant to undertake a five year conservation programme.
The archive trust has also put together an illustrated presentation called The Stamford Mercury, 1712 to the present: a Georgian newspaper.
The presentation is on at Stamford Library in High Street over the weekend.
It takes the newspaper from its foundation in St Martin’s in 1712 to the end of the Georgian period in 1830.
There were no such things as national newspapers in the early days and the Mercury, which served the whole of the East Midlands, was the only source of news for this area. In its heyday it served the whole of the East Midlands.