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The Mirror Archives

Welcome to the world's largest archive of old Daily Mirror editions dating back as far as 1903 when this popular tabloid newspaper was first launched. An original Mirror newspaper is a fantastic commemorative gift for special occasions and offers truly unique insights into current events, and areas of interest, at the time of print. A popular choice in title due to the method of reporting, promising "to be entertaining without being frivolous, and serious without being dull", which still rings true today.

Anyone receiving a past issue of the Daily Mirror will not only love reading the headlines from the day they were born but also find the photography fascinating. The prominence of images is what makes a vintage Daily Mirror slightly different from other popular past titles, which tended to be more text heavy.

The Daily Mirror 1932

If you were born in 1932 then you also share your year of birth with actor Anthony Perkins and singer/presenter Des O'Connor. Interesting events likely to be covered in an old Mirror 60th birthday newspaper from this year include:

8th January 1932Church remarriage is forbidden by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
1st August 1932The Mars bar was born, developed specifically for the UK and set to rival a popular US chocolate bar, the Milky Way.
3rd October 1932British rule of Iraq ended and Iraq became a member of the League of Nations with years of conflict to follow.

The Daily Mirror 1942

Born in 1942? This was also the birth year of actress Elizabeth Taylor and evolutionist Bryan Clarke who is also celebrating his 70th birthdays this year. Some other interesting historical events from 1942 include:

1st January 1942The first edition of Desert Island Discs was broadcast by Ron Plomley, originally intended as 8 episodes it is now one of the longest-running radio programmes in the world.
12th June 1942Ann Frank makes the first entry in her new diary on her 13th birthday.
26th November 1942The movie Casablanca shows for the first time at the Hollywood Theatre in New York City.

The Daily Mirror 1952

Those born in 1952 also share their date of birth with entertainer Michael Barrymore and TV personality Sharon Osbourne, events appearing in The Mirror from this birthdate may include:

20th February 1952Compulsory national identity cards are scrapped by William Churchill, 6 days before the UK announced its first atomic bomb.
14th November 1952The NME announced the top 12 singles chart; this was compiled via an unscientific survey of numerous record stores around the company over the telephone.
5th December 1952Multiple factors contributed to the Great Smog which in turn brought about new legislation for air regulations. Unfortunately a little late for the estimated 12,000 that died as a result of this catastrophe.

The Daily Mirror 1962

Famous 1962 birth dates include journalist Vanessa Feltz and comedian Jack Dee, current news in The Mirror from the day you were born may include:

2nd April 1962The Panda Crossing was launched although required a little too much patience from drivers so was dropped just 5 years later.
1st May 1962The first ever Incredible Hulk comic book was released with inspiration taken from combining Jekyll and Hyde with Frankenstein.
13th July 1962Prime Minister Harold Macmillam dismisses a third of his cabinet in what the press dubbed 'the Night of the Long Knives'.

The Daily Mirror 1972

If 1972 is your birth year then it's also shared with actor Sid Owen (better known as Ricky Butcher from Eastenders) and Oasis singer Liam Gallagher. Whilst they wouldn't have been making the news just yet some historical events that may appear in archived Daily Mirror newspapers include:

30th January 1972The British Army kills 14 unmanned nationalist civil rights marchers in Northern Ireland, known as Bloody Sunday.
24th March 1972The first Godfather film is released, now regarded as one of the greatest films in world cinema of all time.
31st December 1972An extra leap second is added to the end of the year (23:59:60) to better align clocks with mean solar time.

A Brief History of the Daily Mirror

The Daily Mirror newspaper is part of Mirror Group Newspapers, which is a subsidiary of Trinity Mirror plc. It is printed in tabloid format and as of December 2008, it has an average daily circulation of 1,346,916 copies. The newspaper takes a centre-left political stance and it is the only national daily newspaper in the UK to have loyally supported the Labour Party from 1945 up to the present day.

The Daily Mirror was founded by Alfred Harmsworth (later Lord Northcliffe) of the Daily Mail on 2 November 1903, making it the UK's oldest surviving tabloid newspaper. Although it was printed in this format from the first edition, the Daily Mirror was originally a middle class paper. Alfred Harmsworth announced in the opening editorial:

'It is new, because it represents in journalism a development that is entirely new and modern in the world; it is unlike any other newspaper because it attempts what no other newspaper has ever attempted. It is no mere bulletin of fashion, but a reflection of women's interests, women's thought, women's work'it is only now that increased breadth in interests makes it possible for me to find the large staff of cultivated, able, and experienced women necessary for the conduct of a suitable newspaper.'

The Daily Mirror was intended to represent women's interests and was thus run by women. However, it was also designed with men in mind, as Harmsworth went on to write:

'The interests which it represents are surely as important to the world as those of finance, shipping, and sport, each of which have their representatives in the daily Press; and as I intend it to be really a Mirror of feminine life as well on its grave and lighter sides, I venture to think that no man to whom the reflection and progress of human affairs are of interest need to be ashamed to be interested in the Daily Mirror.'

The first issues of the Daily Mirror carried advertisements on the front page, which helped pay towards the costs of running the newspaper. However, the publication was transformed into a pictorial paper on 26th January 1904. It featured engraved pictures on the front cover and was briefly renamed 'The Daily Illustrated Mirror', but this title only remained until 27 April 1904, after which it reverted back to the old name of The Daily Mirror. Several other changes took place on the publication at this time, as it searched for increased readership. The female journalists were replaced and 'A paper for men and women' was added to the masthead. Furthermore, the price of the newspaper was reduced to a halfpenny. The Daily Mirror's circulation subsequently flourished from 38,540 copies at the end of November 1903 to 120,000 copies by February 1904.

In January 1914, Harold Harmsworth (later Lord Rothermere) purchased the Daily Mirror from his brother Lord Northcliffe (Alfred Harmsworth, 1st Viscount Northcliffe). The average daily sale by that time had reached more than one million copies. Lord Rothermere sold his shares in the Daily Mirror between 1931 and 1935, but this did not mark the end of the Harmsworth dynasty's influence on the newspaper.

Cecil Harmsworth King (Lord Rothermere's nephew and Advertising Director) together with Harry Guy Bartholomew (Editorial Director) pioneered a revolution at the Daily Mirror during the 1930s and 1940s, transforming the publication into a left wing paper for the working class. Guy Bartholomew was appointed Chairman of the Daily Mirror in 1944, which supported the Labour Party for the first time at the General Election of 1945. By the late 1940s, circulation had overtaken the Daily Express and risen to an average daily sale of 4.5 million copies, therefore making the Daily Mirror the United Kingdom's biggest selling newspaper.

In 1951, Cecil King replaced Guy Bartholomew as Chairman of the newspaper. King added the Scottish Daily Record and the Sunday Mail to Daily Mirror Newspapers Ltd in 1955. He subsequently acquired Amalgamated Press (later renamed Fleetway) in 1958 and Odhams (publisher of the Daily Herald newspaper) in 1961, to form the International Publishing Corporation (IPC) on 31st December 1962. As Chairman of IPC between 1963 and 1968, Cecil King now presided over the world's largest publishing enterprise. Meanwhile, the Daily Mirror became the world's largest selling paper with a record average daily sale of 5,282,137 copies in 1967.

On Wednesday 4th October 1969, the Daily Mirror became the first daily newspaper in the UK to produce a free weekly colour magazine. However, this was printed for only nine months.

In 1970, IPC was taken over by Reed (which it part owned) in a reverse takeover and the new company was named Reed International. In 1974, Reed separated the company into two groups - IPC (the magazines titles) and Mirror Group Newspapers (the newspaper holdings). Mirror Group Newspapers was subsequently sold to Robert Maxwell on 12th July 1984, who was proprietor of the Daily Mirror until his death in November 1991.

The Daily Mirror began to regularly print colour photographs on 2nd June 1988. It moved to full colour production on 2nd April 2008, as the newspaper was redesigned with a new look, introducing new headline and copy fonts.

The Daily Mirror was relocated to its current premises at 1 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, by David Montgomery (Chief Executive 1992-1999) during March 1994. Subsequently in September 1999, Mirror Group Newspapers was taken over by Trinity (the regional newspaper publisher) to form Trinity Mirror.

The Daily Mirror Supplements

On 11th October 1997, the Daily Mirror launched 'Look' magazine. This was the second time a colour insert had accompanied the newspaper and the first time a magazine was issued alongside the Saturday edition. It included television listings, reviews and celebrity interviews, in addition to features on fashion, shopping and cooking.

On Tuesday 2 November 1999, another insert was launched. 'M' was a mid-week magazine for women, which incorporated features and advice on beauty, fashion, food, health and relationships. On 10th February 2001, 'M' was moved to the Saturday edition of the paper, therefore accompanying 'Look' and providing readers with two magazines for the weekend.

The final editions of the 'Look' and 'M' magazines were printed on 9th August 2003, in the year of the paper's one hundredth anniversary. They were replaced by the 'We Love Telly' magazine one week later, which contained television listings, reviews, interviews and a puzzle page.

There are several regular supplements that currently accompany the Daily Mirror. During the week, the two main additions are 'Mania -We love football' on Mondays (during the football season) and 'The Ticket' entertainment guide on Fridays. Two regular supplements also accompany the Saturday edition of the newspaper - the football themed 'Mania on Saturday' (from August to May) and the 'Winner - We Love Racing' horse racing supplement. The weekly 'We Love Telly' magazine is also still printed on a Saturday.

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