It all started on the wedding day of Meredith's founder, Edwin Thomas Meredith. His grandfather's nuptial gift was a fistful of $20 gold pieces that bought the controlling interest in his grandfather's newspaper, Farmer's Tribune. A note that said, "Sink or swim" was attached to the debt-laden balance sheet. Meredith turned around the fortune of the paper and sold it for a profit. With the proceeds, he decided to publish a journal that met his vision of what a helpful farm publication should be: a service magazine. In October 1902, the first issue of Successful Farming magazine was sold to 500 subscribers. By 1914, circulation was over the half-million mark.
In 1912, the 200-employee company moved into the core of the corporate headquarters building at 1716 Locust Street in Des Moines. Since then, seven additions have been made to the building, including a $40 million campus addition completed in 1998.
E.T. Meredith carved a niche for himself in both the publishing and civic arenas. He helped establish the 4-H Club and served on Woodrow Wilson's cabinet as Secretary of Agriculture. Early in 1928, he was considered as a Democratic nominee for president. Sadly, the publisher's health began to fail, and he died that year at age 51. His legacy continued, for E.T. Meredith's company became the well-respected corporation it is today.
Today, Merdith’s portfolio includes Family Circle, Better Homes and Gardens and Fitness magazines, 13 local television stations in markets such as Las Vegas, Kansas City and Atlanta, and numerous web-based media outlets.
Common Stock, issued in the 1980’s
Printed by the American Bank Note Company
8” (h) x 12” (w)
This certificate has vertical fold lines, punch hole and machine cancels in signature areas and body.