Looking Back


The News on Paper

We hear so much about the slow but sure decline of print media: people are choosing to get their news online rather than via paper newspaper; book stores are closing; start-up magazines aren't lasting very long.


Some of us can remember spreading out the huge newspaper that filled half the kitchen table and settling in for a good read. Now it's there on the tiny screen. Here's a look back at some of the old newspapers in the Onoway Museum and Archives collection.


The July 18, 1885 issue of the Edmonton Bulletin consists of one newsprint sheet folded into four 8"x11" pages - very tiny print, no photos or major headlines. A column headed "New Advertisements" has an ad using up one inch of space offering a $5.00 reward for a large, light grey Canadian horse that is lost. It is shod only on the front feet and has a leather halter on. How could you miss this 16 hands high beauty?! Another ad under "Hotels" tells of "Jasper House, north side of Main Street. The only brick building in Edmonton." First class weekly and daily board and good stabling are part of the package.

By the time Alberta became a province in 1905, the local newspaper was considerably larger. Ads (often with illustrations) were now advertising new-fangled long distance telephone lines but still soliciting buyers of first class clean coal.

Evening Journal September 2,
                                      Weekly December 5, 1923

Alberta a province - Evening Journal September 2, 1905

Saddle - Edmonton Journal Farm Weekly December 5, 1923

The Edmonton Journal Farm Weekly had a short lifespan in the twenties but was around earlier and still today as the Edmonton Journal. The Christmas supplement in 1923 advertised men's blue serge pants for $3.25. Heinzman & Co. suggested getting a baby grand piano for mother for Christmas and a cabinet phonograph (record player) for Dad.


The Edmonton Journal had the broadest base in this part of Alberta and survived over the years. Local, national and international news made the headlines. But things are changing. The to-your-door delivery in Onoway is history, as is the Sunday edition.


Print newspapers stay alive on the basis of advertising income. They need our support! Besides, their tangible existence helps us look back and learn from the past.

                                February 24, 1928
                                January 25, 1965

Deficit - Edmonton Journal February 24, 1928

Churchill Edmonton Journal January 25, 1965

Return to History Page

Return to Home Page
Last updated: June 23, 2019