Black newspaper publisher Mary Alice Jervay Thatch, 78, dies


Mary Alice Jervay Thatch, the third-generation editor and publisher of a historic Black newspaper in North Carolina and a driving force behind the pardons of the Wilmington 10, has died. She was 78.

Thatch died Tuesday at Duke University Hospital in Durham, but a cause of death was not available, according to her cousin, Paul R. Jervay Jr., who considered her a “human dynamo.”

Thatch was the daughter of Thomas C. Jervay Sr., the publisher of The Wilmington Journal. Her grandfather, printer R.S. Jervay, started the newspaper as the Cape Fear Journal in 1927, decades after a mob of white supremacists burned The Daily Record, the African American newspaper, to the ground in the 1898 Wilmington Massacre.

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