Like so many papers these days, the Washington Post's newspaper division is struggling. It's seen a 44 percent decline in operating revenue in the past six years.
Some workers Tuesday said selling to Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos might be the only way out.
"I think a lot of people are scared, but there also extremely excited at the same time," says staffer Francesca Etchegaray.
Rita Coopersmith, who has worked here in the advertising department almost 30 years, is supportive of the sale.
"This was the best move that they could do and the survival of the paper is very important," she says.
Indeed, as increasing numbers of newspapers cut back or close up shop completely, the Post has gone more to online subscription and advertisements.
Still, having an iconic family-owned paper go to a dot.com mogul is uncharted waters.
Tyrone Waiters reads the Express, a free Post-owned daily also part of the sale. But he gets most of his news online.
"I don't buy the Post or do anything like that. I don't pay for the paper but I do the freebies, just come out to the park," he says.
And free online makes it increasingly tough for the old-fashioned Post to survive.
David Yudin's daily morning ritual includes a cup of coffee and the Post was jolted by news of the sale.
"The Grahams (are) like an institution in Washington," he says. "That was an absolute shock to me."