About Us

The Independent gathers Monroe County news around the clock 


“If it happens in Monroe County… It’s news to us!”

We serve the Monroe County, Illinois communities of Columbia • Waterloo • Valmeyer • Maeystown • Fults • Hecker • Madonnaville • Foster Pond • Fountain • Harrisonville • Renault • Wartburg • Tipton • New Design • New Hanover • Monroe City • Boxtown • Ames • St. Joe • Burksville • and the Monroe County Sides of Red Bud, Millstadt, Prairie du Rocher, New Athens and Dupo.

The Independent was founded March 17, 2001, by Monroe County natives Edward J. Wienhoff, Jr. of Waterloo and John J. Conrad, Sr. of Columbia. The two were born and raised here and have relatives living in all corners of the county. John Conrad's family was the longtime publishers of the Columbia Star, Monroe County Clarion and Millstadt Enterprise. "Ed-itor" Wienhoff learned the trade as the publisher of The Monroe County Peephole. 

The paper is published by the Independent Media Group Ltd., owned by John and Ed. "The I" is printed twice monthly, the first and third Fridays of the month. In addition, paid mail delivery subscribers are able to receive breaking news E-Newsletters. 

Editorial Office 
120 N. Main St., P.O. Box 407
Columbia, Illinois 62236.

Phone: 618-281-8000
Fax: 618-281-7969

E-mail: independent@htc.net