John W. White was one of the interesting journalistic persons in Knox County, Ohio, during the 19th century. He was born in Vermont and came to Knox County about 1840. Little information is available regarding his family.
He was active in community affairs, including the beginning of the first Knox County Historical Society, which was formed in 1849. For a few years (1849-1852) he edited The True Whig newspaper in Mount Vernon. John White died in Mount Vernon in 1865.
White was very much involved in political matters. He is especially known for a political satire, The First Book of Chronicles, first published in The Mount Vernon Republican in three installments in 1858, and then published as a 32 page pamphlet later the same year. The book was a sarcastic commentary on Democrats who were divided over the question of slavery in the new state of Kansas. The pamphlet is very rare, but Lorle Porter has reviewed the document in Ohio History, Summer, 1972. The entire title of the pamphlet is given below. He also published a three-act play in 1858. We have found no commentary regarding the drama.
The First Book of Chronicles Humorously Illustrated: Being a Faithful History of the Dissension among the Harmonious Democracy of the County of Knox, upon the Kansas Question! 1858
George Seymour: or Disappointed Revenge. A Drama. 1858