In another sign of growing civility, after the Civil War, editors overcame their frequent war of words and in 1867 formed the Michigan Press Association. Although the organization ceased to meet during World War I, it was reorganized in 1922.
The Michigan Publishers Association published an organizational circular in 1868 stating that the purpose of the organization was good fellowship, better acquaintance, and the promotion of the general welfare of the Press. “General welfare” meant many things, but one concern that was repeatedly discussed, well into the twentieth century, was a statewide rate for legal advertising and well as agreement about rates for other forms of ads. A few years later the group explicitly noted that “By the cultivation of friendly relations among ourselves we avoid the jealousies and embittered feelings that are liable to grow out of political differences, and reduce to a minimum the evils of an excited business competition.”
In order to promote membership the MPA in the latter part of the nineteenth century promoted extensive “excursions.” Described as educational opportunities by some, others called them junkets. While members debated whether the tours were educational or recreational, the excursions were clearly popular. In an era when only 25 or 30 members might show up for an annual meeting, 400 individuals participated in the 1885 in an excursion to Traverse City, Charlevoix, and Petoskey. Soon excursions went beyond the boundaries of the state. Excursions became so popular that the MPA discussed purchasing a permanent site for such activity, once seriously discussing purchasing land on Mackinac Island.