Museum Musings: The Prince Albert Herald

Photo from the Bill Smiley Archives. A parade marches by the location where the Prince Albert Daily Herald was printed between 1923 and 1950.

In my last column, I wrote about the early newspapers published in the Prince Albert area.  I was going to leave it at that until a conversation a few days ago.  One of the people involved mentioned the name Nestor Hryciuk.  Others joined in, but every one of them recalled only that Nestor had been the owner of Frank’s Cigar Store and then, afterwards, of Mills Brothers.  I found this curious, as my recollections were of Nestor as the editor of the Daily Herald.  It seems that the local newspaper of the past, and the people responsible, have faded from our memory.

A Directory of the City of Prince Albert For 1908 listed three local newspapers, none of which was The Herald or Daily Herald.  There was The Morning, listed as publishing “every lawful weekday morning”.  It had apparently been established on Oct. 1 of that year, and its office was located in the Ross Block on River Street.  Tom W. Davis was identified as the managing editor, and W.J. Mahoney was the business manager.

One of two weekly newspapers was listed as The Advocate.  It was published weekly, on Thursdays, from its office on Third Street (probably now 13th Street).  J.H. Harrison was the editor and, unlike The Morning, you could contact this newspaper by telephone.

The second weekly newspaper was listed as The Times.  It was also published every Thursday, by J.W. Young, the editor.  R.P. Laurie was the newspaper’s manager.  Its office was on Nesbit Street (later Eighth Street), and you would be able to contact this paper as well by telephone.

The first volume of The Henderson’s Directory published for Prince Albert was in 1909.  Under the heading Personnel of the Press, three newspapers were listed.  The Prince Albert Times, located at 132 East Eighth Street, was published every Wednesday by Young and Laurie, publishers and proprietors.  John W. Young was the editor, Reginald P. Laurie was the business manager, and J. McAlpine was the reporter.  Other staff included Allan D. Gow, the advertising manager; Burton C. Glenn, the accountant; and Ernest F. Collins, foreman.

Also published by Young and Laurie was The Daily News.

The Herald was published semi-weekly, on Tuesdays and Fridays, by Matheson and Scott.  J.R. Matheson was the editor, and L.M. Scott was the manager.  The news editor was J.S. Woodward, and R.S Gano was he advertising manager.

The second volume of The Henderson’s, published in 1911, listed three newspapers under the heading Personnel of the Press.  Again, The Times was published by Young and Laurie, with the former as the editor and the latter as the business manager.  Vernon Knowles was the news editor, and E.O. Wills was the accountant.  Ernie Collins was now identified as the superintendent.  The Daily News was also being published from the premises of The Times.

The Herald was listed as being published every Thursday by Herman, Armstrong and Lawrence.  W.F. Herman was the manager, G.P. Armstrong was the editor, and A. Waugh was the news editor.  The advertising manager was a man by the name of Porter.  At this time, The Herald was published from offices at 26 – 11th Street West

In 1913, The Henderson’s listed The Times and The Herald.  The personnel at both newspapers had changed considerably from that listed two years previously.  The Times’ proprietor and publisher was J.A. Aiken, once again from offices at 132 East Eighth Street.  Douglas Lawrence was designated as the editor, and George Heighway as the business manager.

The Herald was being printed by Daily Herald Printing, located at 111 – 11th Street West (a building now known as Rivercrest Apartments).  The publishers were listed as Allan Holmes, news editor; Harry Hueston, editor; and William G. Reid, manager.  Thomas A. Boright was the advertising manager. 

The next issue of The Henderson’s, issued in 1914, listed two papers, one English language and the other French.  The Herald’s office once again was at 111 – 11th Street West, with publication occurring daily and weekly.  Harry M. Hueston, Allan Holmes, and William G. Reid were the publishers.  Reid was the business manager; Hueston, the editor; and Holmes was the advertising manager.

The French language newspapers, Le Patriote de l’Ouest, was being published weekly from offices at Third Avenue and 13th Street West by La Bonne Presse Co. Ltd.  Reverend Father A. Auclair, OMI, was the editor, and Joseph P. Daoust was the business manager.  This paper continued operation from 1914 until 1941, at which point it had a name change to La Liberte & Le Patriote.

Through the years, staff at the French language newspaper included such names as J. Alph Fortin, J.E. Morrier, and Joseph N. Jutras.  The editors included individuals such as Father V. Langlois, Father Joseph Valois, and Father Tessier.  However, even with the name change in 1941, the paper did not survive beyond 1943.

The Henderson’s Directories were not published during the First World War, so the next edition came out in 1919.  Again, the Prince Albert Herald was being published by a company called the Herald Printing Co. Ltd.  Harry Hueston was responsible for the Press and was the editor, Allan Holmes was the secretary-treasurer and business manager, and Frank Tees was the circulation manager.  The advertising manager was J.B. Creighton, and Thomas Wayling was the city editor.

In 1921, Allan Holmes and Harry Hueston relocated to Ontario, where they entered into partnership with A.D. McKenzie as publishers of The Galt Reporter, the Sarnia Observer, and the Welland Tribune.  H.J. Foster was also a partner in the Welland newspaper.  As a result, Holmes and Hueston entered into an agreement in February, 1923, to sell the Daily Herald and The Herald Press to W.L. Davis and John Eagle.

The sale resulted in the appointment of John Eagle as the new president and editor of The Herald.  Florence Eagle was now the secretary-treasurer and business manager, W.L. Davis was the advertising manager, and William Eagle was the circulation manager.  The city editor was now A.D. Gordon.

Some change had occurred at The Herald by 1927.  John Eagle had assumed the role of managing director, and A.D. Gordon had been promoted from city editor to editor. 

In that same year, a new English language newspaper, the Prince Albert News, had commenced publication at 48 West 10th Street.  S. Lorne Small, owner of a printing firm located there, was the manager of the new newspaper.

The Prince Albert Herald had some staff changes in 1929.  John Eagle remained the managing director, and William Eagle was the secretary-treasurer, while Gordon Campbell had assumed responsibility for circulation, William L. Davis was the advertising manager, and Edward N. Davis had become the editor. 

In 1932, The Herald had a new circulation manager, Robert Collings.  Lorne Small’s newspaper had disappeared.

In 1934, The Herald had moved to the corner of 10th Street and Central Avenue (where Fresh Air Experience is now located).  William Eagle continued as the business manager, while William Davis was the advertising manager, and Edward Davis was the editor. 

Meanwhile, the Prince Albert Herald continued to be a stable publication.  No personnel changes occurred until 1947, when Burton Lewis assumed the position of editor.  William Eagle continued to run the paper with William Davis, although Davis now held the title of president.

By 1950, The Herald had moved off Central Avenue to 30 – 10th Street East, its current location.  And in 1951, the newspaper appears to have lost its status as a locally owned and operated newspaper.  Still printed by the Daily Herald Printing Company, the new general manager was R.H. Robichaud, and the editorial page listed offices in both Toronto and Montreal.  Burton Lewis, who had been editor since 1947, left the newspaper in January of 1951, and was not replaced until September, when J.F.A. Calder was appointed.

It was 1953 when Western Publishers bought the Prince Albert Daily Herald, and Colin J. McConechy assumed the position of editor.  He did not last long, however, being replaced in 1958 by Farmer Tissington.  Herbert Cowan also replaced Robichaud, lasting as general manager of the Herald until 1966.  Tissington left The Herald and went on to the Ottawa bureau at the start of the 1960s.  He was replaced in 1961 by Ray Guay.  Guay also went on to Ottawa and was a noted political columnist.  He died in Richmond, B.C., in 2010.

Guay was followed by a local man, Nestor Hryciuk.  Having started at The Herald in 1954 as a reporter, Hryciuk worked his way up to the position of city editor before becoming the paper’s managing editor.  He left The Herald the end of August, 1970, at which time Jack Denhoff was the publisher.  Denhoff had come to Prince Albert in 1967, and remained here until 1972 when he was replaced by John Friesen. During Denhoff’s time here, and after Hryciuk left the paper, there was no managing editor until Jim Martyn was elevated to the position from the city editor’s desk in October 1971. Martyn was editor until April 1973. John Friesen had a similar situation to Denhoff’s, with no editor in May, prior to the arrival of Dick Wright in June of 1973.

Friesen left The Herald in 1974, and Clarence Wiseman arrived in January 1975.  Dick Wright stayed with the local paper for a year with Wiseman, and when he left he was replaced at the editor’s desk by Oren Robison.  Wiseman and Robison worked together until 1977, at which time Robert Gibb was appointed publisher and Wayne Roznowsky was appointed as managing editor.  Gibb and Roznowsky worked together until 1995, even though the take-over of The Herald by the Canadian Newspaper Co. Ltd. (Can-West) in the mis-1980s, and by the Thomson chain in 1992.

When the Hollinger group bought The Herald in 1996, Gibb was still the publisher, and Barb Gustafson was the managing editor.  Gustafson was the newspaper’s first female editor.  She remained in that position until 2000, including in 1999 when Curt Duddy was appointed as the publisher.

Prince Albert was well served by our newspapers during the 20th century; some would say particularly when it had people from the community sitting at the editor’s desk.