The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, which has chronicled the news of the city since logs slid down its steep streets to the harbor and miners caroused in its bars before heading north to Alaska's gold fields, printed its final edition yesterday.
Seattle becomes the second major city to lose a newspaper this year, following Denver, as many US dailies face uncertain futures, battered by quickly declining ad revenue in the age of the Internet and a teetering economy.
Hearst Corp, which owns the 146-year-old P-I, said on Monday that it failed to find a buyer for the newspaper, which it put up for a 60-day sale in January after years of losing money.
The P-I's roots date to 1863, when Seattle was still a frontier town. It will now shift to another frontier for newspapers: entirely to the Web.
"Tonight will be the final run, so let's do it right," publisher Roger Oglesby told the newsroom.
The last print edition began rolling off the presses at a suburban printing plant shortly after 10 pm on Monday. The front page featured a headline saying, "You've meant the world to us," and a photo of the 9-m neon globe atop the P-I's building, which has a slogan rotating around the equator saying, "It's in the P-I."
Hearst's move to end the print edition leaves the P-I's larger rival, The Seattle Times, as the only mainstream daily in the city. The Times plans to deliver a copy of the newspaper to every P-I subscriber this morning, spokeswoman Jill Mackie said.
The Rocky Mountain News in Denver closed earlier this month after its owner, E.W. Scripps Co, couldn't find a buyer. In Arizona, Gannett Co's Tucson Citizen is set to close on Saturday, leaving one newspaper in that city.
And last month Hearst said it would close or sell the San Francisco Chronicle if the newspaper couldn't slash expenses in coming weeks.
The US newspaper industry has seen ad revenue fall in recent years as advertisers migrate to the Internet, particularly to sites offering free or low-cost alternatives for classified ads. Starting last summer, the recession intensified the decline in advertising revenue in all categories.