Established in 1899, The Independent is Kansas City’s longest-running magazine. In its more than 118 years of publication, The Independent has missed only one issue – in 1947 when the journal was beset by a typographers’ union strike. Unique in its field, it is the only publication to focus primarily on the cultural, philanthropic and social aspects of Our Town. Paid subscriptions to The Independent carry it primarily to the Kansas City area and across the country to subscribers who count on the magazine to keep up-to-date on all the happenings in Our Town. Copies of the publication are also available at Barnes & Noble on the Country Club Plaza and at Town Center Plaza.
The Independent was established in 1899 by George Creel, who became a nationally known writer, and Arthur Grissom, founder of Smart Set magazine in New York. Initially, The Independent had a strong political flavor, reflecting Mr. Creel’s opposition to the turn-of-the-century faction led by James Pendergast. Politics discreetly dropped from the Magazine’s pages in 1909 under the new ownership of Katherine Baxter and Clara E. Kellogg of Kellogg- Baxter Printing Company. Mrs. Gleed Gaylord, the former Martha Nichols, acquired the journal in 1939, becoming owner, publisher and editor, as well as president of Creel Publishing Company. She had worked on the editorial staff of the Magazine under Katherine Baxter and Clara E. Kellogg for a decade prior to acquiring it. Mrs. Gaylord sold The Independent to Robert P. Ingram in 1983, and Laureen Ingram, Mr. Ingram’s daughter-in-law, purchased the Magazine from him in 1996. The current publisher, Rachel Lewis Falcon, acquired the Magazine in 2017.
- The Independent is mailed to paid subscribers every other Saturday and is available at select newsstands.
- The subscription renewal rate for 2017 was 90 percent, with 56 percent of the circulation in Johnson County, Kansas, and 34 percent in Jackson County, Missouri.
- We publish 26 issues per year and Kansas City’s only annual Charitable Events Calendar.
- The Independent also produces the major performing arts playbills for Starlight Theatre, Kansas City Ballet, Lyric Opera, and Kansas City Repertory Theatre.
- Pass-along readership of The Independent is substantial because it is frequently read by other household members, extended family, friends, and routed through executive staffs of the most prominent and civically-active corporations. Reaching more than 27,000 readers, copies of The Independent can be found in the offices of physicians, dentists and attorneys because a large number of our subscribers are professionals.
- $342,163 average household income
- More than 45 percent of our subscribers have renewed for 10 years or more
- 46 percent are between the ages of 18 and 54; 54 percent are more than 55 years old