Archives Moment: The St. Albert Star/L’Etoile de St. Albert newspaper collection

 

The Musée Héritage Museum Archives has a large collection of newspapers. We certainly have the St. Albert Gazette in all its transformations over the years, but we also have some early papers that circulated in the early 1900s.

First as we retrace the history of newspapers in St. Albert, the period from 1909 to 1915 saw as many as three different newspapers circulating in St. Albert, and all of them were published in French. This time period is often known as the golden-age of French journalism in Alberta. The first paper in St. Albert was Le Progrès starting in 1909, founded by Wildred Gapiépy to initially give himself a means of making his electoral program known to the people. It would eventually move its printing to Edmonton and become Le Progrès Albertain. We have a copy of the last edition of this newspaper in our archives from August 19, 1915.

St. Albert also had a paper called the Saint Albert News for a very brief period. The St. Albert Star, also known as L’Etoile de St. Albert, was the third newspaper during this time period. We have almost a full set of this newspaper in our archives. It was published from 1912 to 1914. As you will see in the video above, it was a bilingual paper in English and French, making it a unique publication. The uniqueness went down to the articles which were often tailored to each language of the paper. So you would often have articles appear in one language and not in the other. By 1914 the paper changed its style when they removed the two sections for the paper and just printed one paper called L’Etoile/The Star that had both French and English articles mingled throughout rather than have separate sections for each, as you will see to the right from this front page of the paper from March 4, 1914.

Searching through these newspapers can provide valuable information about events in our history and how in general the times were like in our town. Manual searching is possible, however, we are happy to note that the St. Albert Star/L’Etoile de St. Albert has been digitized and made available through the Peel’s Prairie Provinces website. You will see each year listed and you can search through each individual paper or do keyword searches through the whole collection.As always, please get in touch with our archives at archives@artsandheritage.ca or 780-459-1528 if you are interested in learning more about our newspaper collections or have any other questions regarding our archives.