The Gazette (Montreal)
The March 7, 2011 front page of The Gazette
|Managing editors||Catherine Wallace1|
|Sports editor||Stu Cowan1|
|Photo editor||Marcos Townsend1|
|Founded||June 3, 1778|
|Political alignment||Canadian federalism|
|Relaunched||August 25, 1785|
|Headquarters||1010 Saint Catherine Street West, Suite 200, Montreal, Quebec|
The Gazette, often called the Montreal Gazette to avoid ambiguity, is the only English-language daily newspaper published in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, with three other daily English newspapers all having shut down at different times during the second half of the 20th century.
Founded in 1778 by Fleury Mesplet, The Gazette is Quebec's oldest daily newspaper.3 The oldest newspaper overall is the Quebec Chronicle-Telegraph (coincidentally, also the only English-language newspaper in its city), which was established in 1764 and is published weekly.
Fleury Mesplet founded a French-language weekly newspaper called La Gazette du commerce et littéraire, pour la ville et district de Montréal on June 3, 1778.4 It was the first entirely French-language newspaper in Canada.4 The paper did not accept advertising aside for the various books Mesplet also published. The articles were meant to promote discussion, and focused on literature and philosophy, as well as various anecdotal articles, poems and letters.4 This paper was shut down in 1779, with Mesplet and the editor, Valentin Jautard, having been imprisoned for their participation in the American Revolutionary War.
Mesplet began a second weekly, The Montreal Gazette / La Gazette de Montréal, on August 25, 1785, which had a dual French-English bilingual format similar to that used by the Quebec Gazette.4 Its offices were located in the house of Joseph Lemoyne de Longueuil on rue de la Capitale.5 French columns were in the left-hand column and English columns in the right-hand column. The columns were originally written in French and translated to English by Valentin Jautard, who served as editor until his death in 1787.4 The columns were mostly on education, religion and literature, and after 1788 on politics.4 Foreign and local news made up the rest of the paper. The paper took a Voltairian and anti-clerical stance, wanted Quebec to have its own legislative assembly, and sought to import the principles of the French revolution to Quebec.4 The newspaper also introduced advertising and announcements, taking up half of four pages. It is the direct ancestor of the current newspaper. The newspaper did well, and Mesplet's operation moved to Notre-Dame Street in 1787. Mesplet continued to operate the newspaper until his death in 1794.4
Following Mesplet's death, his widow published the newspaper for several issues, but the paper ceased publication soon after. Two rivals, Louis Roy and Edward Edwards fought over the right to publish the newspaper over the course of two years.5 Edwards eventually won the printing press and newspaper, and continued operations until his assets were seized in 1808.5 The newspaper was then the property of James Brown for fourteen years. In 1822, it was sold to businessman Thomas Andrew Turner who converted into an English-only paper in 1822.53 Under Turner, The Gazette identified with the interests of anglophone business leaders in their fight with the Patriote movement.5
On April 25, 1849, The Gazette published a special edition in which its editor-in-chief, James Moir Ferres, called the "Anglo-Saxon" residents to arms after Royal Assent of a compensation law for Lower Canada.6 This is the lead event of the burning of the Parliament Buildings. Ferres was subsequently arrested.
For many years, The Gazette was caught in a three-way fight for the English newspaper audience in Montreal with the tabloid Montreal Herald and the broadsheet Montreal Star.7 The Gazette was second in circulation to the Montreal Star, which sold more newspapers in the city and had a significant national reputation in the first half of the 20th century. The Montreal Herald closed in 1957, after publishing for 146 years. The Montreal Star, part of the FP Publications chain (which owned the Winnipeg Free Press and, at the time, The Globe and Mail), endured a long strike and ceased publication in 1979, less than a year after the strike was settled.
In 1988, a competing English-language daily, The Montreal Daily News, was launched. The Montreal Daily News adopted a tabloid format and introduced a Sunday edition, forcing The Gazette to respond. After The Montreal Daily News folded in 1989, after less than two years in operation, The Gazette kept its Sunday edition going until August 2010.
In 1996, the Southam papers were bought by Conrad Black's Hollinger Inc. Then in August 2000, Hollinger sold the Southam newspapers, including The Gazette, to Canwest Global Communications Corp., controlled by the Winnipeg-based Asper family. In 2010, a new media group, Postmedia, bought the Gazette and other papers from the financially troubled Canwest.7
To celebrate its 150th anniversary, The Gazette published a facsimile of one of its earliest issues. Much effort was made to use a type of paper that imitated 18th century paper, with fake chainlines and laidlines to make the paper look old.8
Today, The Gazette's audience is primarily Quebec's English-speaking minority. The Gazette is one of the four dailies published in Montreal, the other three being the French-language newspapers (La Presse, Le Journal de Montréal, and Le Devoir).
In recent years, The Gazette has stepped up efforts to reach bilingual francophone professionals and adjusted its coverage accordingly. The current executive editor is Lucinda Chodan, the deputy editor is Katherine Sedgwick, and the managing editor is Catherine Wallace.1
On April 30, 2013, Postmedia Network announced that it would be eliminating the role of publisher at each of its newspapers, including The Gazette. Alan Allnutt, who was the publisher of The Gazette at the time, became the regional publisher of several newspapers in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Gerry Nott, former publisher of the Ottawa Citizen, was appointed to the position of regional publisher for several newspapers in Ontario as well as The Gazette.9
- Section A — Local, national and international news, opinion columns, editorials, editorial cartoon, letters to the editor, business news, sports news, arts and entertainment news.
- Section B — Sports (Mondays and Thursdays), Business (Tuesdays), Food (Wednesdays), Movies (Fridays)
- Section C — Driving and classifieds (Mondays)
- Section A — Local, national and international news
- Section B — Saturday Extra: Feature stories and opinion columns, editorials, editorial cartoon, letters to the editor.
- Section C — Business news and weather
- Section D — Sports
- Section E — Culture
- Section F — Homefront, classified, working
- Section G — Travel
- Section H — Weekend Life
- Section W — Diversions
- Mark Harrison (1977-1989)10
- Norman Webster (1989-1993)11
- Joan Fraser (1993–1996)12
- Alan Allnutt (1996–2000)
- Peter Stockland (2000-2004)
- Andrew Phillips (2004-2009)13
- Raymond Brassard (2010-2013)14
- Lucinda Chodan (2013-present)14
- La Presse
- Le Devoir
- Le Journal de Montréal
- Montreal Daily News (defunct)
- The Montreal Star (defunct)
- "Contact Us". Montreal Gazette. Retrieved 16 October 2013.
- Audit Bureau of Circulations e-Circ data for the six months ending September 30, 2011. Retrieved February 16, 2012.
- "About Us". The Gazette. Retrieved April 25, 2012.
- Galarneau, Claude (1979). "MESPLET, FLEURY". Dictionary of Canadian Biography (University of Toronto / Université Laval) 4. Retrieved 16 October 2013.
- "Montreal Gazette / La Gazette de Montréal en 1785" (in French). Vieux-Montréal. 22 April 2002. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
- Moir Ferres, James (April 25, 1849). "The Disgrace of Great Britain accomplished!". Wikisource. Retrieved April 25, 2012.
- Porter, Jessica. "Montreal Gazette". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 16 October 2013.
- "Document Doubles" in Detecting the Truth: Fakes, Forgeries and Trickery, a virtual museum exhibition at Library and Archives Canada
- Dobby, Christine (2013-04-30). "Postmedia eliminates publisher positions as part of wider restructuring". National Post. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
- Hustak, Alan (2007-04-03). "Gazette's former editor-in-chief dies". The Gazette. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
- Wells, Paul (2009-06-08). "The last two paragraphs of Norman Webster's May 29 Montreal Gazette column". Maclean's. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
- "Senator Joan Fraser — Liberal Party of Canada". Senate of Canada. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
- Faguy, Steve (2009-04-30). "Andrew Phillips to leave The Gazette". Retrieved 17 October 2013.
- "Note to readers: Raymond Brassard leaves Gazette". The Gazette. 2013-08-30. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
- Official website
- Official mobile website
- Digital microfilm archive 1878–1986 from Google news archive.
- bicentennial issue