Doan Treasury Graphic

Newspaper Serials

Sensational Serials for Newspaper Profits

This image was printed alongside a sensationalized newspaper serial on the Doan Gang and their activities. The serial appeared in the Doylestown Watchtower and Independent Democrat from January to March 1853. The Doylestown Watchtower was a weekly newspaper published in Doylestown, Bucks County. The serial was written by the editor, William P. Seymour. 

Newspaper serials like this, and what appeared in the Doylestown Democrat, were historically inaccurate. They were hyperbolic accounts of the Doan Gang's origin story and the robberies they committed. But they were successful with readers and helped to sell newspapers. In fact, it became a common practice for newspapers to print these stories when circulation was low and they needed to make money. These were not contemporary retellings of the events related to the Doan Gang. There were no Bucks County newspapers during the heyday of the Gang's activities. Newspapers reporting local events during and shortly after the Revolution were based in Philadelphia.