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Connecticut's largest and longest-published African American newspaper approaches 48th anniversary

Northend Agent's have already gone digital and will still honor having a tangible newspaper for as long as possible.

HARTFORD, Conn. — Northend Agent's is Connecticut's largest and longest-published African American newspaper and has been a staple in the Greater Hartford area and beyond for more than four decades.

"We figured out how to pivot and how to navigate and sustain ourselves," explained Editor in Chief Sasha Allen Walton. "I am just immensely proud of what we've created."

Allen Walton said it's been a journey as they continue the legacy her father started.

"It's crazy but great to imagine a Black man that grew up in an era of segregation and so many racial disparities, and to create something sacred for this community, which still has a value to this day in such an immense way; that means everything to me," passionately explained Allen Walton. 

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Since the paper's inception, the mission has been to create a safe space where the voices of marginalized communities are both celebrated and amplified. 

"We are such a fun and exciting way to share the stories of Black and brown people in a safe space that is uplifting, uplifting, and empowering to this community," said Allen Walton. 

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Michelle McFarland has written for the paper for 20 years and said she sees firsthand its impact in the community when shining people of color in a positive light.                                               

"Northend Agent's has made a huge commitment and doing that," said McFarland. "So it's important that we encourage our young people especially use your voice in a way that matters."

While Northend Agents is approaching its 48th anniversary in March, Allen Walton said the reality is newspapers may not be around for much longer. However, she said they've already gone digital and will still honor having a tangible newspaper for as long as possible. 

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"The writing's changed, the story's changed, but you know what? The love for the people hasn't," said McFarland.

Allen Walton agreed and said this is why the business will continue to work and give a voice to the voiceless. 

"It's a team of us working to ensure that this stays here and that this legacy continues," said Allen Walton.

Raquel Harrington is the race and culture reporter at FOX61 News. She can be reached at rharrington@fox61.com. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

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