Its predecessor, the Catholic Register, began publication August 11, 1905. It was a local paper for the church in Denver. Matthew Smith, who served as editor while a seminarian and then a priest, from 1913 to 1960, built the company into a chain of 35 local newspapers, as well as a national edition, which first appeared in 1927. As dioceses began to establish their own weeklies in the 1950s, the Register brand declined, sometimes converting to a diocesan paper and sometimes ceasing publication altogether. California businessman Patrick Frawley purchased the national paper in 1970 and moved it to Los Angeles. In 1995, a group of investors combined with a religious order, Legionaries of Christ, bought the Register and moved its headquarters to Connecticut.