John H. Copeland, 13th president, was editor and publisher of the San Antonio News in the 1890s. He participated in a train excursion to the National Editorial Association convention at Boston, Mass., in June 1890. Enroute, the group visited Sedalia, Mo., and received a small write-up mentioning Copeland specifically on page 8 of the June 24, 1890, edition of the Sedalia Weekly Bazoo.
In the San Antonio City Directory of 1891, Copeland was listed as an attorney at law and editor and proprietor of the Texas Tribune. At the ninth annual convention of the Texas Press Association, Copeland was listed as being with the San Antonio Tribune. References in F.B. Baillio's TheÂHistory of the Texas Press AssociationÂshow Copeland associated with the San Antonio Chronicle. Various sources credit Copeland with founding San Antonio's first circulating library. Copeland was a San Antonio alderman, Fourth Ward, from Jan. 9, 1882, to Jan. 8, 1883. The July 14, 1887, edition of the Austin Weekly Statesman includes a story recounting a public speech Copeland gave in opposition to a proposed constitutional amendment to ban the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages in Texas.
The Galveston Daily News edition of May 11, 1893, provides a record of the Texas Press Association annual convention. Under the multi-deck headline: Faber Pushers of Texas / They Are Entertained at Oak Cliff College. / The Shorthand Man Mingles With the Brethern and Jots Down All He Gathers Concerning Them / and under the dateline, Dallas, Tex., May 10, states: "President John H. Copeland was born in England. He came to Texas at 3 years of age. After living at San Antonio some years, where his folks settled, he was sent abroad to school. Then he saw much of the old world. He turned up again in Texas and and after a time joined the press. Copeland weighs 225 pounds, is a good specimen of a Britisher, takes things as they come, and has been around long enough to be able 'to get there' when he sets out. He has much interest in the press association and punctuates his rulings beautifully with the gavel."