Southern Argus (1866-), Port Elliot
This is one of the state's oldest country newspapers, and one of the few still privately owned. For 140 years it has been run by the Elliott and Jones families. Geographical coverage has mostly concentrated on Strathalbyn and surrounding districts. In the nineteenth century the newspaper covered a broad area between Murray Bridge and Victor Harbour, which diminished as newspapers were established in these latter places. The Argus editors have not expressed strong political opinions except on rare occasions such as early moves towards a White Australia policy in 1893, comparing talk of banning ‘Asiatic’ hawkers as worthy of despotic Russia. (13 July 1893, p. 2) Country readers tended to be conservative voters, and reports of the ubiquitous Liberal Union branches are reported from 1911. Although the Argus supported Conscription during the First World War, it was more low-key than some sections of the country press. Issues relating to the River Murray featured from the start, through reports of the riverboats in the 1860s, the building of the locks from 1914 and Goolwa barrages in 1934, to the Hindmarsh Island bridge controversy from 1993. In 1930, 1981 and in 2001 concern was voiced about water levels, salt, and the future of the river, concerns that have been expressed by those living on the lower reaches of the River Murray since first settlement.