Founded in 1779 by settlers from Spain, the town of New Iberia was at the heart of Louisiana’s prosperous sugar-growing region by the 19th century. The area is perhaps best known today for its association with Tabasco hot pepper sauce, which has been produced at Avery Island, a few miles from New Iberia, since 1868.
The Iberian Publishing Association established the Weekly Iberian in 1894 after its predecessor, the Daily Iberian [LCCN: sn88064321], founded a year earlier, failed to attract enough subscribers to justify a daily edition. A typical, small-town Southern newspaper, the Iberian carried miscellaneous news reports from around the world, brief personal notes (including, in the 1890s, biographical sketches of prominent locals), the minutes of the Iberia Parish school board and police jury (similar to county councils in other states), information on the Louisiana sugar industry, news related to local entertainment venues such as the popular Elks Theater, marriage notices, obituaries, and a wide range of general-interest essays. Around 1914, sheet music provided by the American Melody Company of New York was published. Issues dating from the First World War contain information on the war’s effects on life in Louisiana.
The Weekly Iberian was published until 1946, when it was again issued as the Daily Iberian [LCCN: sn88064323], continuing under that title until 1964.