Biography of Charles Levi Banta

Charles Levi Banta, born on April 10, 1883, in Urbana, Champaign County, Ohio, is the editor-manager of the Guernsey Times, the only Republican newspaper in Guernsey County. He is the son of John A. and Emma R. Banta. Banta graduated with honors from Urbana High School and pursued business training independently. His journalism career began with reporting for the Springfield Press-Republican and continued with the Zanesville Times-Recorder. In May 1907, he joined the Guernsey Times, becoming editor and part-owner within six months. Banta married Minnie E. Snyder on October 25, 1905.

Charles Levi Banta, of Cambridge, is the editor-manager of the Guernsey Times, the only Republican newspaper in the sterling Republican county of Guernsey. The birth of the subject occurred in Urbana, Champaign County, Ohio, on April 10, 1883. His parents were John A. and Emma R. Banta. His boyhood was spent in this beautiful town in the heart of Ohio’s agricultural garden spot. His education was secured in the public schools of Urbana, unexcelled in Ohio, and his graduation from the Urbana High School was with honors fitting him for entrance to any of Ohio’s colleges without further question. Business training was sought of his own accord, and before school hours, after school, and after supper hours were spent in a department store, vacations being spent likewise, maintaining himself as the youngest of a large family until his high school education was completed, his study hours running into the night while others slept.

An undertaking of no small effort resulted in a high school annual being published by his graduating class, the only one of its kind ever attempted, that today is regarded as a gem in the public school history of Urbana. He was made business manager and editor-in-chief of this work, put through without donation or appropriation from the school or school authorities. Before the next college year was opened, Mr. Banta was found reporting for the big city papers the speeches of the great Marcus A. Hanna and the renowned William Jennings Bryan and many other lesser notables at the Urbana Chautauqua. This correspondence brought him a position on the reportorial staff of the Springfield (Ohio) Press-Republican, later on the Springfield Morning Sun.

In February 1903, Mr. Banta entered the reportorial realms of the Zanesville Times-Recorder, when that paper had just begun to attain its strong hold in Muskingum County Republican homes under the present able management. Before coming to Cambridge, Mr. Banta had succeeded to the city editor’s desk on this publication. The Guernsey Times was founded in 1824, being the oldest publication in Guernsey County. It attained a position that excited the envy of its many contemporaries during the ownership and able editorial writings of the late Hon. David D. Taylor.

In May 1907, Mr. Banta became associated with the Guernsey Times, and in less than six months, he was editor, manager, and part-owner. Looking back to this time, the accomplishments made with the Guernsey Times are many. A new linotype machine has been added, doubling its capacity, and today it is the only Cambridge newspaper owning these marvelous inventions of the modern newspaper life. On March 1, 1909, the Guernsey Times was moved to a ground floor location on Wheeling Avenue, the Republican Press being combined with the Weekly Guernsey Times. With new and increased mechanical equipment, that has been maintained to a high efficiency, wonderful strides have been made toward giving the citizens of the Guernsey Valley a big city newspaper. Telegraph news service by special wire has been installed, market quotations daily by wire, official city and county printing, the official organ of the United States district court, all tell of exclusive features that make the Guernsey Times a home paper. Mr. Banta saw to it that the Times secured membership in the Ohio select list of daily newspapers and maintains for his paper a salaried eastern representative in New York City, also a western representative in Chicago.

On October 25, 1905, Mr. Banta married Minnie E., daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. J. Snyder, at their home in Springfield, Ohio. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. One child, a daughter, born to this union, died in infancy. Since attaining his majority, Mr. Banta has been ever affiliated and in his profession and possessions ever earnest in the cause of the Republican Party. In addition to being editor-manager, Mr. Banta


Sarchet, Cyrus P. B. (Cyrus Parkinson Beatty). History of Guernsey County, Ohio. Vol. 2, B.F. Bowen & Company, 1911.

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