After publishing for 41 years, the Moosehead Messenger of Greenville put out its last issue on Feb. 9. The weekly newspaper ceased publication due to economic factors and the owner’s desire to pursue other ventures.

“We certainly do not view our decision to cease publishing the Messenger as a defeat, but as a personal choice for us,” said Publisher Aggie Purinton in a statement about the paper’s closure. “Our journey has not been without obstacles along the way and many of them were too difficult to overcome.”

The Messenger has been managed by Bangor-based Hometown Newspapers LLC since January 2011.

Robert Pushard, publisher of Hometown Newspapers, said, “While we hate to see any newspaper close, we understand Aggie’s position and support her 100 percent. … These are very tough economic times, and the advertising revenue to support two independent weekly newspapers in a market that small just isn’t there.”

A second weekly serving the Greenville area, Moosehead Matters, began publication in 2007.

Some of the Messenger’s popular features will be carried in Hometown Newspapers’ new Highlands Journal-Moosehead Times, which will debut Feb. 16, including the American Legion Post 94 column, Milt’s Mutterings, the Moosehead Service Directory and stories by award-winning writers Fran Emmons and Shelagh Talbot.

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