The Tribune was founded in December 1894, with Republican George B. Lockwood among its co-founders. James Solomon Barcus bought the paper in 1902. In 1904, Barcus also bought the Terre Haute Gazette (which dated to around 1869) and merged it into the Tribune. (The combined paper was known, at least briefly, as the Tribune-Gazette.)
A 230-day strike shut down both theTribune and Star in 1964-65.
The Tribune and Star were sold to Ingersoll Publications in late 1982. Prior to the sale, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology owned a controlling interest in the papers. In May 1983, the morning Star and afternoon Tribune were merged to become the morning-published Tribune-Star, part of the nationwide trend of the period away from afternoon papers.
In 1990, Ingersoll sold a number of papers including the Tribune-Star to Thomson Corporation. In 2000, Community purchased the Tribune-Star and 16 other papers from Thomson, as a part of Thompson's exit from the U.S. newspaper business.