The Colonial Williamsburg News was the official newspaper of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Publication began November 1940 under the title The Restoration News and was published under that name until February 1942. The title changed to The News of Colonial Williamsburg from February 1942 to May 1950. The name changed again in May 1950 to Colonial Williamsburg News. It is often collectively referred to by the abbreviated title CW News. Production switched to a digital-only format in 2018. The newspaper ceased production in 2020.
When using the CW News, it is important to remember that it reflects the realities of its time. For example, columns in the 1940s issues reported on the “News of the Colored People.” Separate reporting of African American and white social events was indicative of the segregation that was the legal norm in Virginia at the time.
The number of issues published every year varies. No papers were published between January 1943 and June 1, 1948. From August 1979 through May 1992, a supplemental publication titled Colonial Williamsburg News Extra was sometimes published to include additional information for staff, especially during those periods when the paper was published every other month. There are occasional Public Relations-style news releases published as CW News Telenews or sometimes just as Telenews.
The publication was produced principally for employees to inform them of important and relevant goings-on in a timely fashion. Although distributed fairly widely at CWF properties and now online, the paper covers topics including Restoration (and later Colonial Williamsburg Foundation) building openings, new programming, Historic Trades, special events, historical and architectural research, archaeological discoveries, new employee hires and retirements, employee activities and achievements, employee profiles and personal milestones, employee benefit and charity concerns, donor activities, museum exhibitions and acquisitions, film productions and book publications, educational initiatives, celebrity and VIP guest visits, restaurant and hotel news, product and reproductions releases, Merchant’s Square shopping, and relevant local area news.