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Centre College Cento

The Centre College Cento broke the pattern of rapid mortality suffered by all other nineteenth century student publications. First appearing in 1891 as a magazine published by the literary societies, it evolved through several stages into the college newspaper which continues publication today under the original title. Good relations between the magazine and the faculty may have contributed to its initial success. Gone is the tone of hostility expressed in the Centre College Courant, and references to faculty encouragement and support are often found in the early issues. The Cento also proved popular in other quarters. In an editorial in the June 1898 issue there is praise for the Board of Trustees for their financial support of the magazine. However, the publication could not escape the struggle between the literary societies and the fraternities. Competing fraternities sought to elevate their own members to positions of prestige, and the editorship of a literary magazine was one of those.

In 1898 the Cento still proclaimed itself as being published by the literary societies, but in November of 1903 there is an abrupt change. The masthead no longer lists the literary societies, but reads "Published Monthly by the Students of Centre College." In 1905 the name was changed to The Cento-News, reflecting a change of mission as the publication began its rapid evolution into a modern college newspaper. Gone was the control by the literary societies as The Cento-News announced that "The staff has been chosen by the Faculty Committee on Publications, and while the immediate management is `non-frat', it represents so many of the interests in college life that the same treatment is assured to all."