Bees and Honey has been distinctly a western publication, although it has attracted considerable circulation in the eastern states. It started as a local organ for the Alameda California Beekeepers' Association, with Cary W. Hartman as editor, and for a time was composed of only a few pages. The first issue appeared in 1920. In November, 1922, it was taken over by George W. York and moved to Spokane, Washington, where for a time it was known as York's Bees and Honey. In that issue the new editor recalls his purchase of the American Bee Journal thirty years before, and stated that when he retired from that publication after twenty years as editor he had no intention of ever again taking up such work.
In January, 1924, the name again became Bees and Honey, as before. The year 1925 sees the publication issued from Seattle, where it remained until 1930. It was then moved to California, where it has since remained.
The California Apiculturist is of interest now only because it was the first bee magazine on the Pacific Coast. It was started in February, 1882, with N. Levering as editor. With the June number W. A. Pryal became associate editor and manager. It continued only until November.
At Rome, Georgia, in November, 1873, was launched Moon's Bee World, in charge of A. F. Moon. He previously had been associated with a man named King in the publication of the North American Bee Journal, at Indianapolis, which seems to have suspended publication with the tenth number in July, 1873. Thus the Moon's Bee World appears to have been the successor of that magazine, continuing until January, 1877.
It was never of special merit and never attracted support from the rank and file of men prominent in that day. Charles Dadant was a frequent contributor and wrote in his usual vigorous style. It is of interest principally because of the location of its office of publication, since little attention had been given to the stimulation of beekeeping in the South prior to that date.
It was not until April, 1919, when J. J. Wilder started The Dixie Beekeeper at Waycross, Georgia, that the Southeast had another bee magazine which established a large following. This publication ceased with the March, 1930, issue.
The California State Beekeepers' Association was responsible for the publication of the Western Honey Bee during the early years of its existence. It began in April, 1913, at Los Angeles, with George L. Emerson as editor. He was succeeded by J. D. Bixby in October, 1913, and the office moved to Covina. There were several years of prosperity under Bixby until his resignation in 1919. The September issue of that year appears with S. S. Knabenshue as editor, and the office was moved back again to Los Angeles. Knabenshue had been a teacher and for twenty years managing editor of the Toledo Blade, a widely known Ohio newspaper. Later he had spent five years in the consular service in Ireland, and five more in China, after which he had retired. Thus he brought a rich background of experience to the editorial desk of the little paper to which he devoted his declining years.
In March, 1924, Knabenshue resigned because of advancing age. J. W. Ferree then became managing editor for a time. This arrangement was short-lived, for in June, 1924, C. A. Wurth became editor and carried on until the magazine was sold to Helen Weightman in the spring of 1925. The magazine continued to appear with regularity until the close of 1929. Two numbers appeared in 1930, January and June, since when no more have been issued.
The fact that so many magazines devoted to bees have been started indicates the interest which was shown in that field during the years when the industry was undergoing its great transformation. To describe all the list in detail would entail the writing of a volume, much of which would be of but little interest or importance. Lack of advertising support was probably responsible for the death of many of these ventures. Others indicate little in the way of real contribution to the industry; hence there was no reason why they should have continued. The ably-edited magazine usually received recognition and continued during its time of usefulness.
Fortunately, a few copies of most of these magazines, and in some cases complete files, are available in the Miller Memorial Library at Madison, Wisconsin; the Cornell University Library, Ithaca, New York; the Library of the United States Department of Agriculture; the American Bee Journal, and other libraries. Most of them are valuable only because of historic interest. A few are extremely useful as sources of important beekeeping history.