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When Editor and Publisher W.W. Casteel produced the first edition of the Sampson Independent on March 13, 1924 he proved that he was a booster of both his own fledgling publication and of the Sampson County market. Casteel built his newspaper by both acquisition and competition. First he purchased the subscription lists of two predecessors, The Sampson Democrat, founded in 1894, and the Sampson News Dispatch, founded in 1908. Then he augmented this reader total through a subscription drive that culminated in one lucky subscriber winning a brand-new Studebaker Six Special automobile worth $1,624.