Wenhuibao was founded in Shanghai in 1938 by leftist leaning intellectuals around the writer and journalist Ke Ling. Over the next decade it was closed down twice for its political leanings.
In early 1956, ''Wen Hui Bao'' was forced to relocate to Beijing and was renamed Jiaoshibao . In the course of the Hundred Flowers Campaign, however, the paper was allowed to resume publication on 1 October, 1956. Under its editor-in-chief Xu Zhucheng, ''Wen Hui Bao'' became one of the most outspoken newspapers during the Hundred Flowers Campaign, but was attacked by Mao Zedong in July 1957 and punished.
In late 1965, ''Wen Hui Bao'' became an outlet for the Shanghai leftists around Jiang Qing and Zhang Chunqiao, who launched their attack on the writer on the pages of ''Wen Hui Bao''. This article became the starting shot of China's Cultural Revolution. On 4 January, 1967, the paper was taken over by radical Red Guards in the first power seizure in Shanghai.
In the 1980s, ''Wen Hui Bao'' re-emerged as an intellectually stimulating and widely read paper with mass circulation. When readership dropped in the 1990s, it was merged with the market -oriented Xinmin Wanbao newspaper into the Wenhui-Xinmin United Press Group.