The Nashville Banner will cease publication after 122 years of publication, the paper announced Monday.

Publisher Irby Simpkins announced the shutdown to the staff Monday. The final paper will come out Friday."It was a kind of shocked, stunned silence in the newsroom," said chief copy editor Mike McGee, who has worked at the paper since 1971.

"It's a sad day."

After the announcement, the staff went back to work putting out this afternoon's editions.

"Right now, we've got nine more papers to put out," McGee said.

The locally owned afternoon paper, which publishes five days a week, has a circulation of 39,838, compared with 63,000 10 years ago, Simpkins said.