This article is subscriber-only content. To get access to this and the rest of, subscribe or sign in.

Thanks for reading! To enjoy this article and more, please subscribe or sign in.

Unlimited Digital Access

$1.99 for 1 month

Subscribe with Google

$1.99 for 1 month

Let Google manage your subscription and billing.

By subscribing, you are agreeing to the's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.
No thanks, go back

Are you a subscriber and unable to read this article? You may need to upgrade. Click here to go to your account and learn more.

About Us

About Us

The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette

10 Buck Island Road

Bluffton SC 29910


The Paper

Vision: The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette are the leading news and information sources for the Lowcountry of South Carolina. We take seriously our responsibility to provide essential, trustworthy information, with an eye toward preserving what is best about the region and heightening awareness of what can be better. We work energetically to extend our brand thorough innovation, creativity and by capitalizing on opportunities in our market.

Click to resize

Founded: (Island Packet) In 1970, real estate developer Tom Wamsley and former newspaperman and retired Foreign Service officer Ralph Hilton enlisted help and money from a third Hilton Head Island resident to start a newspaper. Jonathan Daniels, editor emeritus of the Raleigh News & Observer, which his family owned, agreed to write a weekly column; his wife, Lucy, provided $5,000 to get the newspaper started. The first edition — a 20-page tabloid — rolled off the press July 9, 1970. The paper came out on Thursday afternoons to the island with only 3,000 residents. As the island grew into a renowned resort, the Packet grew with it — from a weekly tabloid into a daily broadsheet newspaper. McClatchy Newspapers purchased the Packet in 1990, and by 1995 it had become a seven-day-a-week newspaper.

(Beaufort Gazette) William Elliott, a Beaufort attorney, founded The Beaufort Gazette in 1897. The first edition was a four-page, eight-column broadsheet. In 1907, the Gazette consolidated with the Port Royal-based Palmetto Post. The Gazette became a five-day-a-week, afternoon newspaper April 30, 1973. McClatchy Newspapers purchased the Gazette in 1990, which converted it to morning publication. By 1995, the Gazette had become a seven-day-a-week newspaper.

McClatchy News Ethics Policy

These ethical guidelines for McClatchy newsrooms outline the values and standards that guide our journalism. No policy can address every conflict that may arise in our day-to-day work. It’s the responsibility of each McClatchy journalist to use good judgment and confer with news managers if the answer to an ethical question is not completely clear.

Key Executives

Brian Tolley, General Manager/Executive Editor

Michelle Long, Advertising

General Hiring Contact: Human Resources Director Kimberly Gary,

Distinction: The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette are sister newspapers founded 80 years apart and serving southern and northern Beaufort County, respectively. The coverage areas are separated by the Broad River, and the county is reliant on a thriving tourist industry. Northern Beaufort County is home to USC Beaufort, an extension campus of the University of South Carolina serving thousands of students in the Lowcountry region.

Market: Beaufort County is well more than 50 percent water, lying in the southeastern corner of South Carolina along the Atlantic Ocean and the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. It is the heart of the area known as the Lowcountry and the Sea Islands. The region is a popular tourist destination, but also supports broadly varying demographics made up of families, young professionals and retirees, as well as three military bases — Marine Corps Recruiting Depot Parris Island, the Beaufort Naval Hospital and Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort. Each of our two coverage areas — “North of the Broad” and “South of the Broad” — maintains its own distinct regional identity, and it can be a challenge to balance reporting so that all feel represented. Hot topics include: public education, crime, military spending and environmental preservation.

Circulation Area: Home delivery is available to all of Beaufort County and parts of Jasper County. In addition, single-copy sales reach several more counties.

Site: An 80,000-square-foot main office is located at 10 Buck Island Road in Bluffton.

Readership: Daily: 59,317 / Sunday: 63,772 (based on AAM audit of paid circulation September 2013 and March 2014)

Circulation: Monday-Saturday: The Island Packet: 18,683, The Beaufort Gazette: 5,460; Sunday: The Island Packet: 20,260, The Beaufort Gazette: 5,834 (Based on AAM audit March 2016 for The Island Packet and September 2017 for The Beaufort Gazette)

Carrier Force: Independent contractors

Website: |

Average Monthly Page Views/Monthly Unique Visitors:

• 6,106,000+ page views

• 1,093,000+ unique visitors

Location: Beaufort County is located at the southernmost tip of South Carolina, sandwiched between Jasper County to the west and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. It is located 25 miles east-northeast of Savannah, 92 miles southwest of Charleston, 188 miles southwest of Myrtle Beach, and 145 miles south of the state capitol, Columbia.

Climate: Temperatures are generally moderate in Beaufort County, with pleasant-to-hot summers and cooling onshore breezes. Snowfall is rare. The average annual temperature is 65ºF and average rainfall is 49.4 inches. Average low temperature in winter is 43 degrees, and the average summer high is 85. Hurricanes and tropical systems are considered a threat, although Beaufort County has seen many near-misses and few direct hits.

Tourist Attractions: The RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing (South Carolina’s only PGA Tour event), the annual Beaufort Water Festival, 12 miles of Hilton Head beachfront along the Atlantic Ocean, the Concours d’Elegance car show, the Sea Pines Resort and Country Club, Coligny Plaza Shopping Center, Shelter Cove community park, zip line canopy tours at the Broad Creek Marina, Disney’s Hilton Head Island vacation club resort, the Coastal Discovery Museum at Honey Horn, the Old Sheldon Memorial Church ruins, Harbour Town Golf Links and many other golf courses, and numerous food, wine, and cultural festivals and celebrations.

Recreation: Golf, fishing, boating, kayaking, surfing, camping, hiking, swimming, biking, tennis

Nightlife: A variety of restaurants and bars; the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina; movie theaters, including the Highway 21 Drive-In theater; the Station 300 bowling alley; concerts and events at Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park.

Claim to Fame: Movies filmed in and around Beaufort County include “Forrest Gump,” “The Big Chill,” “The Great Santini,” “The Prince of Tides,” and “GI Jane.” The region is also notable for being home to the Gullah culture and particularly its dialect, a regional creole language spoken by 250,000 people in coastal South Carolina and Georgia.

Famous Citizens: Author Pat Conroy, boxer Joe Frazier, musician Duncan Sheik, golfer D.J. Trahan, and singer Candice Glover.

Trivia: More than 250 species of birds are permanent residents of Beaufort County, seasonal visitors or visitors that pass through the area. Beaufort County lies along the Atlantic Flyway, a primary bird migration route extending from the Canadian Maritimes to the Gulf of Mexico. The oldest known European settlement in what is now the United States of America was established in Beaufort County by French Huguenot Jean Ribaut in 1562. His moated colony was called Charlesfort on what is today Parris Island. U.S. Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island in Beaufort County graduates about 17,000 recruits per year, including all female Marines. Marines were first stationed on Parris Island in 1891, and it has been a boot camp continuously since 1915. Semper Fi!

Other McClatchy Markets: Belleville (Ill.) News-Democrat | Biloxi (Miss.) Sun Herald | Bradenton Herald | Charlotte Observer | (Columbus, GA) Ledger-Enquirer | Fort Worth Star-Telegram | Fresno Bee | Idaho Statesman | Kansas City Star | Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader | The (Macon, GA) Telegraph | McClatchy Washington Bureau | Merced Sun-Star | Miami Herald | Modesto Bee | Raleigh News & Observer | Sacramento Bee | The (San Luis Obispo, CA) Tribune | (State College, Penn.) Centre Daily Times | The (Columbia, SC) State | The (Kennewick, Wa.) Tri-City Herald | The (Myrtle Beach, SC) Sun News | The (Olympia, Wa.) Olympian | The (Tacoma, Wa.) News Tribune | The Bellingham (Wa.) Herald | The (Rock Hill, SC) Herald | Wichita Eagle

Area Information:

Beaufort County Government

Official Site

Recent Issues of the Newspaper:

The Island Packet/The Beaufort Gazette Circulation Department

10 Buck Island Road

Bluffton, SC 29910


Get unlimited digital access

Subscribe now for only $1

Copyright Privacy Policy Do Not Sell My Personal Information Terms of Service